You're not alone—70% of women experience vaginal dryness at some point in their lives. Dryness occurs when the internal and external vaginal tissues become pale, thin, dry, and fragile, with a loss of secretions and elasticity. This change is typically linked to a drop in estrogen levels, which help lubricate and maintain healthy vaginal walls. Without moisture, the tissue becomes vulnerable to trauma, infection and bleeding, which leads to pain and discomfort. Birth control, breastfeeding, childbirth, hormonal disorders and perimenopause can all lower estrogen levels. Taking antihistamines and being dehydrated also contribute to dryness.