New Pharmacy Times Readership Survey Provides Pharmacist Perspectives on Feminine Hygiene Products
A recent survey shows pharmacists provide consultations to customers more than 12 times per week and about 90% of those consultations include OTC discussions.
New Jersey (August 13, 2015): A recent survey shows pharmacists provide consultations to customers more than 12 times per week and about 90% of those consultations include OTC discussions.
“We provide recommendations for feminine hygiene products constantly”, says Larry Weiner, 30+ year veteran pharmacist with Lexington Avenue Pharmacy. “Our female customers seem comfortable discussing feminine hygiene and vaginal health issues with us, so it’s important to be knowledgeable not only about their prescriptions, but also about Women’s Feminine Health products as well. I review clinical studies and FDA approved products, as well as feminine hygiene, vaginal health and reproductive health products.”
Across product categories, vaginal antifungals were the most asked-about by customers, followed by feminine probiotics, vaginal moisturizers, and cleansers.
A 2012 study by the
Consumer Healthcare Products Association
shows the value of over-the-counter (OTC) medicines to consumers and the U.S. Healthcare System as a whole. The study,
which measured the aggregate cost savings of OTC medicines as used for the seven most common self-treatable conditions in the United States, reported that OTC drugs provide a value of $120 billion annually; that’s a savings of $6-$7 for every $1 spent on over-the-counter medicines. "The Value of OTC Medicine to the United States"
identifies OTC medicines as the key to avoiding 450 million annual doctor visits, a savings of $23 billion in potential workforce productivity benefits.
“Over-the-counter medicines are people’s first line of defense,” the
National Alliance for Hispanic Health President and CEO Jane Delgado
said. “The availability of safe and effective OTC medicines empowers patients to take a more active role in their personal healthcare management.”
“More than 240 million Americans take advantage of over-the-counter products each year. But walking down the drug store aisle often creates confusion due to the sheer number of options,” says Weiner. “Many consumers just don’t have the facts or understand what questions to ask or what to look for when purchasing such products. For example, feminine odor and discomfort can occur when vaginal pH is unbalanced. I let my customers know that several triggers can throw off a woman’s normal pH of 3.5 to 4.5 including menstruation, sex and certain types of medication and hormonal changes.”
Fortunately, affordable, over-the-counter solutions help women to take control of their vaginal health:
- RepHresh Vaginal Gel is clinically shown to maintain a healthy vaginal pH and eliminate feminine odor and discomfort. RepHresh Gel is fast acting, long lasting and available without a prescription and can be used after your period, after sex, or after douching.
- RepHresh pro-B provides probiotic lactobacillus that is clinically shown to balance yeast and bacteria to maintain feminine health.* Just 1 capsule per day helps maintain vaginal flora in a normal, healthy range.*
Millions of women experience vaginal dryness that can affect and interfere with daily life. Dryness can occur at any age and can be a symptom of menopause, breast-feeding, childbirth, tampon use, medications, excessive exercise and stress. Replens Long-Lasting Vaginal Moisturizer goes to work immediately to provide relief for women with vaginal dryness by replenishing vaginal moisture and helping to rejuvenate dry vaginal cells to enhance comfort.
- A silicone lubricant like Replens Silky Smooth can be used to alleviate painful sex.
Dr. Mary Jane Minkin, OB/GYN and Professor at Yale University, suggests, “Understanding the medical properties of the product available for sale is vital to getting the over-the-counter care you need.” Weiner agrees, “I am always available to help my customers make informed decisions about the different solutions for their health challenges and make it easier to traverse the local drug store.”