As a woman, it is important to take the time to take charge of your personal hygiene. A woman’s personal hygiene is a bit different compared to your regular hygiene routine because your intimate area is delicate and prone to infections. The vagina has an acidic pH, so you need to develop proper intimate habits to avoid upsetting the pH balance and keep good bacteria healthy and bad bacteria out of your lady parts. From wearing breathable underwear to proper cleaning and a well-balanced diet, there are a few basic rules you should follow in order to keep your private parts infection-free.
Disclosure: This post is for informational purposes only. Please contact your primary care dr or OB/GYN for additional help.
Properly Wash Down Below
Considering that your vagina naturally cleans itself with an internal lubricant, you don’t need to use any of the feminine intimate hygiene products. Intimate washes can upset the pH balance in your vagina, which is why you should only use warm water to wash your intimate area. Furthermore, it’s essential that you don’t spray the vagina with water, i.e. douche, because that will only affect the vagina’s natural pH balance, causing yeast infections and bacterial vaginosis.
If there’s a vaginal infection that you don’t know about, douching will only worsen the condition, as the spraying process can cause the bacteria to move into the reproductive organs. A simple rinse around the intimate area will be enough to keep your private parts fresh and clean.
Gentle, unperfumed pH-neutral products or soaps can also be used, as long as you wash them out thoroughly. Soaps and shower gels you use to clean the rest of your body can cause recurrent infections, dryness, and odor, so warm water is the best wash for your private parts because it’ll perfectly freshen up your vagina.
Make sure you wash and dry your private area and change your underwear after exercising or a swimming session. Damp or moist clothes are a breeding ground for bacteria.
After Sex Routine
It’s vital that you wash your intimate area before and after sex to avoid harmful infections spreading from your partner to you and vice versa. We suggest that you wash your genitals before intercourse. It will ensure that you are fresh and clean down below. According to studies, not only is a condom a great contraceptive, but it also keeps the vagina’s pH balance in check and prevents the spread of sexually transmitted diseases.
You should also empty your bladder after intercourse because this will help remove any bacteria that maybe exists in your urethra, and prevent cystitis. Furthermore, every time you go to the toilet, remember to wipe from front to back, to prevent the bacteria from spreading.
Always Wear Breathable Underwear
The choice of fabric your underwear is made of can highly affect the situation in your private parts. It’s imperative that you wear comfortable women’s underwear that’s preferably made of natural materials such as cotton. Because it’s breathable and absorbs moisture, cotton underwear will always keep your intimate area fresh.
You can wear lace or silk from time to time, considering they usually have a strip of cotton precisely in the crotch to ensure breathability. However, try not to wear them constantly, because silk and lace can often feel uncomfortable as they can limit airflow since they don’t stretch either.
Stay away from nylon and synthetic materials because these fabrics are the perfect bacteria-growing environment since they offer no breathability to your vagina. Even though panty liners were made to protect your underwear from vaginal discharge, it’s not recommended that you wear them daily. If you begin to wear a panty liner on a daily basis, you will be at a much greater risk of getting a yeast infection and vulvar irritation because they trap moisture. If you must wear one, do change your panty liner every few hours.
Don’t Skip Your Well Woman Exam
Women should have an annual pelvic exam on a yearly basis unless you notice any symptoms that aren’t normal for you. You could have a yeast or bacterial infection or even a sexually transmitted disease if you are sexually active. Keeping up with your well-woman exam on a yearly basis is an important part of your overall health, including your personal hygiene. During your exam, remember it is a great time to mention any problems down below, heavy or irregular periods, or even contraceptives. It is important that you are brutally honest with your Gyn, they can’t help you prevent problems if you aren’t honest.
Watch Your Diet
The food you’re eating affects every aspect of your body, including vaginal health. That’s why you should try to enrich your diet with foods that make your intimate parts fresh, smell nice, and keep the bacteria away. Some of the foods to help you stay fresh down there are curb spicy foods, onions, garlic, cauliflower, cabbage, dairy, red meat, broccoli, and asparagus.
Citrus fruits are also perfect for a fresh-smelling scent, so feel free to eat a lot of oranges, grapefruit, and pineapple, or make refreshing juices out of them. Hydration is vital for your vaginal freshness, which is why you should try to drink as much water as possible during the day. Drinking plenty of water helps flush toxins out from your body, preventing bad odors in your intimate area. If you need something with more flavor, drink green tea instead of water, because it’s believed to reduce foul smells.
Taking care of your personal hygiene is as important as maintaining proper oral hygiene or making sure the rest of your body is always clean and fresh. Therefore, don’t use aggressive body washes on your intimate area, eat well and invest in quality comfortable underwear to keep your vagina clean and infection-free.