Dry Everything!

A wooden spoon with yellow cod liver oil capsules on it

If you look at the list of symptoms on the page of The Menopause Diaries, the following are listed:

  • Brittle nails
  • Dry skin, eyes or mouth
  • Dry skin on back of hands
  • Vaginal dryness

Back in March 2016 I blogged about dry hands and skin, and even shared images of my dry hands. I mostly have that under control now, not with hand creme, but with something totally different. I use Oil of Olaz day creme on my face every day, and ever since I started putting a bit more on my face and rubbed the excess into my hands, the dryness disappeared. No hand creme ever helped, but the Oil of Olaz does. My legs, however, remain as dry as they ever were, but to be honest, I am not very good at using body lotion. I should start using baby oil under the shower again, as that had seemed to help in the past.

However, I am suffering from more dryness nowadays.

Vagina

This is not something I have suffered of before, but in the past year or two I have noticed that it takes me longer to get wet than it did before. Maybe part of it is because we are having much less sex than we used to, but on those occasions when something sexy happened, no matter how excited I was, it took me longer to get dry, and longer to reach my first orgasm.

Once I reach my first orgasm, it can go two ways. Either I get wet and stay wet until we are done, or I go wet, a bit wetter and then I start to go dry again. When the latter happens, I get sore. It gets tender down there, to the point where I want to stop with sex, where the pain is taking away all the joy of sex. The next day I will still be sore, and one time I even developed a slight vaginal infection.

I now know that I need to have lube next to my bed, always. Where in the past this was only for anal sex, I now need to use it for vaginal sex too, or suffer the consequences during the night and the next day(s). There was a time where I felt it was a ‘shame’ if I don’t get wet, because obviously it must’ve meant that I am not excited, but that time is far behind me. I do hope the dryness eventually passes though, but if not, at least I can still have pleasurable sex.

Mouth

When I looked at the list of ‘dryness’ symptoms, I had a light-bulb-moment.

Mouth!
There are so many mornings that I wake up with my mouth intensely dry, and sometimes it seems that no matter what I drink or how much, the dryness will not disappear. At first I thought this was because I slept with my mouth open (pretty sexy huh?) and then I wondered if it might not be some kind of illness (yeah, I know). I wasn’t worried enough to do anything about it, though, since there are more…

Eyes

Two years ago I started having problems with my eyes. They would be teary, and at the same time felt like I had gotten sand in them. It gradually got worse, until in the summer of 2019 I was so tired of it, that I went to the doctor and asked to be sent to an allergist. I thought it might have something to do with the allergies I have suffered of for most of my adult life. I got a referral and obviously was tested for many things. The end result was that I am no longer allergic to pollen and grass, I am moderately allergic to cats and dogs, and I should stay far away from horses as they can cause me an instant shortness of breath.

But, no allergies that affected my eyes. The allergist — bless her — sent me to the eye specialist. They did a couple of test and discovered that I suffered from, what they call, severe dry eye syndrome. I was prescribed eye drops for daytime and eye gel for the night. It took a couple of tries to find the right eye drops as some of them worsened my problems, but finally I had the right ones. This was November 2019, and I have the meds at the office (where I have to use the drops 4-5 times during the day) and here at home.

Interestingly enough with working from home, I have barely had to use the meds. I think in the 2.5 months of not having been to the office, I might have used it about 5 times, as I have little to no problems. I know this has to do with the airco, and have been thinking if my eyes get as bad as they were when we return to the office, I might apply to work from home 50% of the time. Dry eyes can damage the cornea, and obviously I want to prevent that.

Nails

It was roundabout the time that I was diagnosed with the dry eye syndrome that a acrylic nail spontaneously popped off. I thought this was my fault, as we had been building Ikea cupboards for the studio. With the next set of nails, within two weeks after having it done, two nails popped off. I spoke to the nail stylist, and they took extra care with the next set of nails, but once again I lost two nails in less than two weeks from when my nails were done.

Once more the beauty salon was really professional about it. We decided instead of acrylic nails, we would try gel nails (which I fell in love with). Sadly, once more, within two weeks a nail popped off. The next solution they came up with was both to switch to another stylist, and to use a different technique: liquid pour. Two weeks in the nails started cracking and popping off. By then we were just into the semi-lock-down, so nothing could be done with it anyway.

I soaked the nails off and noticed how incredibly dry my nails are. I have to keep my nails super short, because even when there’s just a bit of growth, it cracks. It’s so very brittle, and so incredibly dry. I think what happened with the acrylic and gel nails is that my nail itself dried out so much, that the glue they use couldn’t stick anymore.

I have therefore decided, for the time being, to just have ‘natural’ nails, and wait for this ‘dry phase’ to pass, and for my nails to become stronger again.

Cod Liver Oil

A wooden spoon with yellow cod liver oil capsules on it
Cod liver oil tablets

Now of course I have been reading about all this dryness and what I can do to treat it, especially my eyes. I am not fond of the eye drops, so any other and more natural treatment is preferred. In doing some research, I found that cod liver oil with omega-3 helps with dry eyes, dry skin and dry nails. I have started taking it, and hope to report back in a couple of weeks.

Master T, who has been given a spoon of cod liver oil once a week when he was a child, actually said “then my mother wasn’t crazy after all” when I told him that cod liver oil might help.

Of course I have chosen to take the cod liver oil in tablet form!

© Rebel’s Notes
Image from Pixabay

The Menopause Diaries

13 thoughts on “Dry Everything!

  1. I think I’ve read before that when you get older you get less wet? I kind of have what you describe sometimes though. Sometimes I’m wet and then it might just ease off and then I’m really dry and it stays that way even though a session may not be done. Maybe it’s to do with exhaustion on my side? The wrong kind of pain can also cause it for me.
    It’s interesting that your nails are now drying out. I actually knew about cod liver oil that it helps the nails as a friend used it for hers haha.

    1. Yes and yes! Before menopause I sometimes also went dry, either from exhaustion or the wrong kind of pain. And sometimes when I tried to ‘force’ being ‘in the mood’. That was before Master T 😉
      The cod liver oil already seems to work, which I am very happy with!

  2. This is a great post Marie
    Re – cod liver oil – well old wives tales were true. it will help with dryness. As will flax seed oil and buckthorn oil capsule are good to take for for vaginal dryness
    I feel a post coming on!
    May xx

    1. Yes, May, do the post! I would love to read more. And I have to say, it seems the cod liver oil is starting to work 😉 xox

  3. These body changes which sneak up on us without flamboyant announcements cause me to feel like a detective continuously sleuthing and a crone (plus whatever the male version is) continuously in search of healing wisdom, creams, potions, and rituals. Like you many of us are becoming more aware of our physicality.
    I never thought when I was younger that when I got older I’d need to be swimming in lube and oil. Or that common topics for conversation would be “adult’ on sharing helpful body wisdom.
    Thank you for your sharing your experiences and discoveries.

    1. Thank you for reading and commenting, David. I guess even though we all had parents who went through the same ‘getting older process’ we all have to discover things for ourselves. I couldn’t ‘build’ on my mom’s experiences with menopause, as she used hormone replacement therapy since she was 36 until 5 months before she passed. I just have to discover these things for myself, and indeed, talks with friends or colleague of the same age seems to quickly go into the direction of bodily ‘discomforts’.

  4. Thank you so much for sharing, at almost 51 I’ve started hot flashes about a year ago here and there now they are much more frequent. We have lube by the bed to and that helps prolong to fun since sometime half way through I might dry up like a puddle on a Florida day. It’s very helpful to hear someone point out things that you usually only get from a doctor. So thank you again!!

    1. Hi Leanne, thank you for reading, and commenting. I believe in putting experiences out there, because we all need to know we’re not alone in our ‘suffering’ right? Let’s hope menopause doesn’t last too long for us 😉

  5. Nicely put, my wife is at a similar stage as a result of chemotherapy but the dry everything sort of resonates ; in her words having to moisturise ‘everywhere for the first time in my life’ is a real pain otherwise the itching starts. There definitely should be much more taught to men about this so some of the bullsh*t can be pushed away.

    The one that usually is the issue is body heat – one minute cold the next so hot it is unbelievable and the uncomfortableness that comes with in…

    1. Thankfully my husband is very understanding about the dryness and the potential itchiness, which is a relief, as in previous relationships I was too afraid to mention something like this. Back then of course it wasn’t because of menopause, but other things. And indeed, the hot and cold; that really is a pain in the…

    1. Oh that is good to know. I now take a tablet every day and have for about 2 weeks now and my nails already seems to be stronger, so I really hope this helps!

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