Genitourinary Syndrome of Menopause
Definition of GSM
Several uncomfortable symptoms define genitourinary syndrome of menopause (GSM), yet you might not recognize them right away. If your vagina and vulva feel dryer than before, irritated, or itchy, sex may not feel like it used to. Women who are experiencing these bodily changes often struggle with urinary frustrations like burning sensations or the need to urinate more often.
Many women know that as they approach menopause in their 50s, hot flashes or night sweats could become their new normal for a while. Fewer women connect their sexual dissatisfaction, dryness, and vaginal laxity to the hormonal shift that they’re experiencing. Unfortunately, many feel too shy to seek treatment.
At Sovereign Female, you can see medical aestheticians, urologists, and cosmetic gynecology experts along with our renowned plastic surgeons in one convenient downtown location. Here, we offer personalized, caring assessment and treatment of GSM along with expert guidance to look and feel your healthiest.
Intimate concerns can be tough to talk about, but we understand. And we have safe, life-changing solutions.
What Is Genitourinary Syndrome of Menopause (GSM)?
Genitourinary syndrome of menopause is linked with severe menopause symptoms. It can accompany systemic physical and psychological changes related to the dramatic hormonal shift that women experience during this phase of life.
It may also worsen over time. Decreased estrogen levels in women contribute to vaginal atrophy, characterized by intimate dryness, irritation, and pain during sexual intercourse.
GSM describes a collection of vulvovaginal symptoms along with urinary frequency, stress urinary incontinence (SUI), and painful urination. GSM affects roughly 50% to 70% of post-menopausal females and is often connected to more frequent urinary tract infections.
Sometimes the various aspects of GSM seem to be unrelated for patients. They may seek advice or help for a lack of enjoyment during sex, then discover that their uncomfortable urinary symptoms are caused by the same underlying problem. At Sovereign, our specialists provide detailed, private consultations to understand and treat you holistically, often improving several areas of concern at the same time.
Common Symptoms of Genitourinary Syndrome of Menopause (GSM)
- Thinner, dry tissue that tears or bleeds more easily
- Bleeding or spotting after sexual intercourse
- Less elastic vulva skin with decreased lubrication
- Pain during sexual intercourse and pelvic exams
- Increased vaginal infections and odour due to altered pH levels within the vagina
- A shorter and narrower vagina
- Involuntary tightening of pelvic and vaginal muscles (vaginismus)
- Decreased labial fullness and tone, appearing deflated
- Decreased sexual satisfaction or avoidance of sex, which may harm intimate relationships and quality of life
Non-Invasive, Drug-Free GSM Treatment at Sovereign Female
Sovereign Female offers solutions ranging from nutritional and hormone therapy to non-invasive laser vaginal rejuvenation. With a comprehensive combination of treatment modalities, we’re able to target visible signs of age in intimate areas while improving circulation and increasing lubrication and sensation. Urinary symptoms are typically improved through laser tightening, which addresses the tone and resilience of the intricate musculature around the urinary tract.
Sovereign is pleased to provide the game-changing IntimaLase, a Fotona laser. It was designed with the complex female anatomy in mind.
This popular laser treatment for GSM is comfortable and convenient. Without incisions or scars and completely drug-free, this gentle laser system generates dramatic tissue rejuvenation quickly and painlessly.
Using precision thermal energy, IntimaLase stimulates circulation, improved muscle tone, elastic skin, and increased lubrication.
The IntimaLase Er:YAG laser therapy is a powerhouse, photothermal tightening device that is comfortably applied in the privacy of our relaxing treatment suites. It’s so effective that patients often report visible and functional results after just one session! Yet they don’t need to fear pain or a lengthy recovery after their laser GSM treatment.
The safety of Fotona Smooth and IntimiLase are backed by multiple clinical studies. These laser treatments have successfully treated vaginal relaxation syndrome, SUI, and atrophy for over a decade.
How is GSM treated?
Genitourinary syndrome of menopause (GSM) is a term that is often interchangeable with vulvovaginal atrophy (VVA).
Because a loss of estrogen during menopause causes physiological changes, the standard treatment approach typically involves hormone replacement therapy. Various pharmaceutical treatment options aim to restore and rebalance the body. However, some of these are known to have systemic effects that can be undesirable.
Your family doctor may prescribe a topical cream to combat some symptoms of menopause-related vaginal atrophy.
Vaginal lubricants can reduce discomfort during sex.
Pelvic floor exercises such as Kegels help strengthen weak vaginal muscles.
Vaginal dilators are sometimes advised for women whose vaginal canal has tightened uncomfortably.
Conventional treatment might not address the changes in the appearance of the vulva that many women notice. These include a loss of fat, collagen, and skin firmness in the area.
Before menopause, the majority of cells in the mucosal vaginal skin are intermediate and superficial. Blood flow is abundant. After menopause, parabasal cells increase, blood flow diminishes, and collagen production tapers off. Natural lubrication may diminish drastically. Therefore, a combination of functional and aesthetic concerns can be troubling for our patients.
Unfortunately, sexual problems for women may not always be treated with the same concern and diligence as the urinary dysfunction aspect of GSM. Though vaginal dryness or a loss of libido might be viewed as a normal part of aging for women, they don’t have to be.
Sovereign Female provides multifaceted treatment solutions for GSM.
Whether you are interested in bioidentical hormone therapy, stress urinary incontinence treatment, solutions for vaginal laxity or prolapse, we invite you to learn about our approach to restore comfort, body positivity, and sexual enjoyment again.
Are You a Candidate for Laser GSM Treatment?
At Sovereign, we love that IntimaLase is considered safe for diverse skin types and tones. Unlike some laser technology, this device uses precision thermal energy directed accurately to specific tissue layers. IntimaLase avoids the problem of surface damage, discoloration, or burns that dark skin types may be wary of.
The treatment is described as a slight warming sensation by some patients. Other women find that they can’t feel it at all. However, they do report rave reviews about their results and a reduction in symptoms.
When you visit your Sovereign practitioner for a consultation and assessment, they’ll recommend a series of treatments for you based on your personal needs and goals. A plan to undergo 1 to 3 sessions spaced 5 weeks apart is most common.
During your treatment, a smooth, gentle, hand-held laser wand will be vaginally inserted to direct thermal energy pulses throughout the canal and then to the external vulva and urethral tissue.
The entire appointment usually takes less than 30 minutes!
A benefit of IntimaLase for our busy patients is that no downtime is required. In fact, you could have your GSM treatment over a lunch break and return to work or your favourite activities. You will be advised to avoid tampon insertion or sexual intercourse for a short time following your session.
Book Your GSM Treatment Consultation at Sovereign Female
If you’re suffering from the unpleasant intimate changes that menopause brings, we’re here to help. You don’t have to live with dryness and irritation, urinary symptoms, and uncomfortable, unsatisfying sex. The latest laser technology at Sovereign Female is designed for women like you. Take the first step to get back to yourself. Call today!
Quality – Aesthetics – Professionalism
If you would like to learn more about what this incredible team of beauty advisors and medical professionals can offer you, please contact Sovereign Female today to start your journey towards the very best that Canada has to offer!