Vaginal dryness is a side effect of decreased estrogen, which can lead to thinner, less elastic tissue—and an itchy feeling or painful intercourse. Fortunately, it's easily countered with both over-the-counter and prescription lubricants and creams. Start with basic OTC brands like Astroglide or K-Y Jelly, which solve the problem for many women. (Petroleum jelly degrades latex and isn't recommended if condoms are used.) If these are insufficient, ask your doctor about topical estrogen cream prescriptions (Premarin, Estrace), vaginal tablets (Vagifem) or the vaginal ring Estring which can be inserted by the doctor or you and changed every three months. Vaginal estrogen is more targeted in countering vaginal dryness and doesn't have the same potential risks as oral estrogen.