Vaginal care: 18 key ways to look after your down there
1. Avoid overusing perfume
Gynecologist Tania Adib says it’s typically not a good idea to over-perfume the vagina, so steer clear of body washes with strong scents.
She says, “Keep it simple.” The mucous discharge that all women experience does an excellent job of keeping the vagina healthy and clean, so it’s vital to keep this in mind. Numerous of these strongly scented feminine fresh style items can alter the vagina’s normal pH balance.
Try this, says the gynecologist: When bathing your vulva and vagina, use unfragranced soaps or very faintly scented body washes.
2. Workout what works for you
Did you realize? Adib asserts that items like scented toilet paper, sanitary towels, and tampons can all cause irritation.
Try this: The best course of action is to identify what upsets you in that area and then stop doing it. Period cups could be an excellent substitute for pads if they irritate you.
3. Select cotton.
Adib also suggests becoming knowledgeable about the materials used to make your underwear and sanitary items, and avoiding lacy and scented items if feasible.
Wearing synthetic thongs that rub on your vulva and vagina can cause irritation and soreness in a short amount of time, according to doctor Deborah Lee of Doctor Fox Online Pharmacy. “Don’t underestimate the benefits of wearing loose cotton underwear,” she advises.
Do this: Try to use unscented feminine hygiene products, preferably made of organic cotton. I suggest Callaly since they offer a variety of organic cotton pads, tampons, and panty liners,” says Adib.
4. After intercourse, urinate
For your information, the gynecologist says that after having sex, going potty is the most crucial thing you can do.
She adds, “If you are prone to UTIs, this is very crucial as it helps flush out the troublesome bacteria that causes them from the urethra.
Do this: Even if you only engaged in a little foreplay or utilized your favorite sex toys during your session rather of a full-on penetrative position, make it a practice to get up and use the restroom afterward. Your likelihood of developing a UTI is considerably decreased by cleaning the region.
5. Avoid wearing tight clothing
According to Adib, wearing tight clothing might make vaginal health problems like UTIs worse.
Try this: She advises using breathable materials wherever possible if you work out frequently or have a profession that requires you to wear tight-fitting leggings on a regular basis. She says, “Sweating in the vulva area might result in bacterial infections.”
6. Don’t use feminine hygiene products.
or so claims Deborah Lee, a doctor. Since your vagina naturally cleans itself, they are mainly useless and a waste of money.
7. After peeing, wipe from front to back.
According to Dr Lee, this has been demonstrated to lower the risk of urinary tract infections because you’re less likely to contaminate your vagina with any feces (you want it to be moving away from your urethra as much as possible FYI).
Do this: If you typically wipe back to front, try switching it up; it’s excellent practice and lowers your risk of contracting infections. It’s among the easiest methods for performing vaginal care.
8. When having sex, use a sufficient lubrication.
According to doctor Lee, there are many excellent lubricants available. Our list of the finest lubes may help you decide which kind and brand is ideal for you.
The doctor says, “Lube can substantially help decrease friction and stress to the vaginal epithelium.” Additionally, it might make sexual activity more joyful and comfortable.
Do this: Start with a non-scented lube and work your way up to experimenting with more exotic mixtures, if you want.
9. Exercise caution when having sex.
According to doctor Lee, this entails using a condom sensibly with any new sexual partners and undergoing routine STI testing.
STIs can affect people of any age, and while they are most prevalent in those under the age of 25 in recent years, older adults over the age of 50 have seen the highest increase in infection rates.
Unbelievably, the majority of STIs have no symptoms, therefore getting tested is the only way to find out whether you have one. The doctor emphasizes that the sooner a STI is identified, the better the prognosis will be for you.
10. Remember to perform pelvic floor exercises.
All women should perform daily pelvic floor exercises, according to doctor Lee.
According to Lee, the uterus, ovaries, bladder, and vagina are all supported by the pelvic floor, which is a band of muscle located between the hip bones. For healthy pelvic and sexual function, these muscles must be strong and in good condition. Incontinence, uterine prolapse, and prolapse of the vaginal walls occur when they begin to weaken, she explains.
Propose this: make pelvic floor exercises a part of your regular regimen.
11. Steer clear of internal douching
According to doctor Datta, internal douching with potent chemicals or fragrant solutions is simply unnecessary because your vagina cleans itself.
Try washing the outside of your vagina with warm water; the doctor emphasizes that this is all that is necessary to maintain a healthy balance of bacteria in your vagina.
12. Frequently replace your sanitary products
Use menstruation cups, pads, or tampons? Then, Datta advises making sure you change them frequently. By doing so, you can prevent harmful bacteria from altering the pH of your vagina.
Try this: Only ever use clean hands to insert tampons, and never use sanitary goods that have fallen to the ground. Doctor Datta suggests washing your menstrual cup in hot water after each cycle.
13. Frequently monitor your sexual health
Regular sexual health exams may seem obvious and, for those of you in committed relationships, superfluous, yet they are crucial for vaginal health.
Do this: Before engaging in sexual activity, “whenever possible, make sure both you and your partner have a clear sexual health screen,” advises Datta. “As an alternative, use condoms to shield yourself from harm as much as you can.”
14. Participate in your cervical screenings
This provides your doctor the chance to examine your vagina while also taking a smear, according to Datta.
She reveals that they simultaneously check for issues like warts.
Try this: don’t put off getting your smear test; they usually only need to be done every three years or so and take only a few minutes. Please read our instructions if you are concerned about what will happen during a smear test.
15. Ensure you are not allergic to sperm.
You might not be aware that some women are allergic to sperm.
Semen allergy, also known as seminal plasma hypersensitivity, is less frequently discussed but typically affects women more than males, according to Adib. “It’s brought on by antibodies that recognize semen as dangerous in a woman’s body and go into overdrive.”
Even though the illness is relatively uncommon, one study found that up to 12% of women may be affected.
Adib typically advises sticking to condoms for ladies who experience semen allergy.
16. Be cautious when having sex, especially if you recently gave birth.
Respect that the vaginal canal may need some recovery time after giving birth because having a baby puts it through a significant exercise.
There is no one “optimal” time to start sex after giving birth; it varies depending on the individual, says Adib. Generally speaking, it just depends on when you feel ready and comfortable.
17. If you just had a baby, choose pads.
Adib encourages women who have recently given birth to use pads instead of tampons and to make sure the pads are unscented.
Keep a watch on the color and smell of the discharge; it should be red and have an iron-like scent; if it is brown and unpleasant-smelling, this could be a symptom of an infection. You will probably have lochia, a form of vaginal discharge.
A natural and breathable pad is a simple vaginal care tip to help preserve comfort if you’ve had sutures, she says.
18. Don’t feel ashamed about dry vaginal skin
According to Adib, women of all ages might have vaginal dryness.
Due to fluctuating oestrogen levels, this is a common postpartum occurrence for many women. Because of the change in female hormones, having sex and working out can be difficult.
Do this: Adib suggests supporting the body with a supplement like Omega 7 Sea Buckthorn Oil and using a vaginal moisturizer like Replens. According to studies, this oil boosts vaginal lubrication and supports the health of mucosal membranes.