Menopause marks the end of your menstrual cycles and the end of your childbearing years. While some women find relief at the idea of not having to manage their monthly periods, others lament the numerous unpleasant side effects and symptoms that come with this milestone. At Park Avenue Women’s Center, we offer a laser procedure called MonaLisa Touch® to treat some of these symptoms.
Menopause symptoms usually start during perimenopause, which is the time leading up to menopause. Women often think of perimenopause as menopause. Technically, menopause is your final menstrual period, which we recognize after 12 consecutive months without bleeding.
During perimenopause, your period starts to become irregular and symptoms such as hot flashes and vaginal dryness may begin. The average age at which women experience menopause in the United States in 51.
After menopause, your ovaries produce a diminished amount of the hormones estrogen and progesterone. During perimenopause, which can last from two to four years, your hormone production can fluctuate.
This reduction or fluctuation in hormones can lead to hot flashes, mood swings, and problems sleeping. Other symptoms of reduced estrogen production are the thinning and drying out of your vaginal walls. This condition is also called vaginal atrophy.
Lower estrogen production and the subsequent changes in your vaginal walls can also lead to sexual and genital problems. These issues may be embarrassing or difficult to discuss and can negatively impact your daily life. Symptoms include:
- Vaginal dryness
- Vaginal itching
- Painful sex
- Low libido
How MonaLisa Touch provides menopause symptom relief
MonaLisa Touch uses fractional laser technology, also called micro-ablation. The laser works much like lasers used to revitalize facial skin. MonaLisa Touch promotes the production of collagen, which are proteins that help skin look younger and your vaginal walls act younger.
MonaLisa Touch achieves this by increasing moisture and lubrication, which helps your vaginal walls become more elastic, firm, and less dry. The MonaLisa Touch can also improve genital circulation. This quick and painless treatment helps alleviate many sexual and genital-related menopause symptoms so you can enjoy a normal, healthy, and pleasurable sex life well into your golden years.
What you can expect during MonaLisa Touch treatment
This in-office FDA-approved procedure is painless with very few risks. Your OB/GYN inserts a wand that is attached to a laser device into your vagina. This wand emits laser energy into your vaginal walls to help stimulate healthy tissue growth, without damaging surrounding tissue.
The procedure entails three treatments, spaced six weeks apart. It takes several months to feel the full effects of the laser treatment, but you should notice an improvement after the first treatment. For the second and third treatment, a numbing cream is applied to make the procedure more tolerable.
The procedure lasts just three minutes, and you can resume normal activities, except for sexual intercourse, immediately after the treatment. You should avoid sex for a few days after each treatment.
For more information on how MonaLisa Touch can help reduce symptoms of menopause, call Park Avenue Women’s Center on the Upper East Side or make an appointment online.