Women's Sexual Health and Diabetes
According to the American Diabetes Association, approximately 10 percent of women in the United States over the age of 20 have Type 1 or Type 2 diabetes. That’s a huge number of women affected and just about on par with the number of men who have diabetes – 11 percent of the American population.
Diabetic women need to be especially aware of certain diabetes-related complications that have a different affect on them than on men.
Yeast Infections and UTI's
Women with diabetes are more prone to developing chronic yeast and urinary tract infections (UTI's) because of the excess blood sugar in their bodies. The excess sugar is the perfect breeding ground for these bacterial agents. Yeast infections can also contribute to vaginal dryness, which can make sex uncomfortable or painful.
Vaginal dryness in women with diabetes can be due to a yeast infection or diabetic neuropathy or even mental states. Vaginal dryness can be easily remedied with lubrication, but many women are embarrassed and seek to avoid sex because they don’t know why sex is painful or uncomfortable. Open communication with your partner and with your doctor will alleviate some of this unwarranted embarrassment.
Communication with Medical Professionals
Many medical professionals do not address diabetes’ effects on sexual health. Be sure to initiate an open and honest dialogue with your gynecologist or diabetes specialist about any sexual dysfunctions you may be experiencing. They may check for hormonal imbalances, improper levels of glucose, or any number of easily remedied issues. Don’t forgo a healthy sex life because of your diabetes.
Sources: American Diabetes Association, Life Script