Twelve top things you should never do to your vagina
12 Things You Should Never Do to Your Vagina to Keep It Happy
The vagina and all other things sex-related were a sacred topic growing up in my conservative home. However, this just made me all the more curious about it.
Early on, I sought all the information I could on this seemingly little organ -from all the names (some funny) it can be called, to the very many (and there are a lot) functions it can carry out.
For instance, did you know the vagina is the most acidic part of your body and that it is so to keep infections away? Or that there are 8,000 nerve endings in the clitoris (guess this accounts for why we have a longer-lasting orgasm of around 20-35 seconds compared to men’s average of six seconds).
However, did you know that beyond these fun facts, the vagina is also a very sensitive organ and should be treated with the utmost care?
The vagina, like most other organs in the body, is a living, breathing organ and you want to go the extra mile to keep it healthy and happy.
Taking good care of your vagina makes it happy and a happy vagina is a healthy vagina, one that works optimally.
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12 Things You Should Never Do to Your Vagina
Here are twelve ways to care for your vagina to keep it in top shape
1)Avoid Washing with Soap
Every vagina has its own distinct smell and that’s because your hormones are forever working to secrete fluids that keep things working as they should down there.
However, it is not uncommon for some women to get bothered by this smell, thinking it is offensive, and attempt to wash regularly to keep the smell under control.
While it’s perfectly normal to want to keep that part of your anatomy clean, it is unnecessary as the vagina is actually a self-cleaning organ and will do a good job of it.
When you try to wash with soap, you do a lot of harm as you disrupt the natural flora of good and bad bacteria coexisting down there, leaving you prone to infections.
Washing with just water is fine to keep you feeling clean, however, if you feel uncomfortable washing without soap, then you want to do so with a bar of unscented soap and also do so sparingly.
2) Opt for Breathable Cotton Underwear
Bacteria love moisture and thrive a lot in such conditions. They replicate easily in such an environment, which is why you always want to go for cotton underwear.
The cotton fabric is breathable and traps less moisture than other clothing types.
You also want to ensure your underwears aren’t too tight as, beyond chafing you, toght undies compress the stomach, promoting acid reflux and heartburn. They also reduce blood flow to your upper thigh region.
3) Change Your Underwear Often
Again, a clean vagina is a happy one and your vagina will be clean, not to mention healthy when you change your underwear often.
Several reasons might bring about not being able to change your undies as often as you should, including being stuck in a remote region.
However, if not restricted, then you should change your panties daily, twice daily even, especially at that time (around your ovulation and fertile days) of the month when you have more discharge to keep your vagina in optimal health.
A good alternative to changing twice is to use a panty liner daily and change this 2-3 times during the day. Beyond keeping moisture away, some brands also come with the added advantage of being treated which can help manage several infections.
4) Wipe the Proper Way
Unlike the penis, the vagina is quite “open”, which means some unwanted things could get in, especially when we are not looking.
One of such times is when we wipe after doing the royal squat.
When you take a dump, there is a right and also a wrong way to wipe. Doing it the wrong way leaves you susceptible to bacteria that could travel from your rectum to your vagina as you wipe.
To prevent this, you want to wipe from front to back and do this a few times until you are satisfied.
5) Cultivate the Habit of Peeing Right After Sex
Sometimes, bacteria get trapped in your urinary tract system after sex which could easily lead to an infection if left.
To prevent this, you should pee immediately after sex so they get flushed down your urinary tract and out of your system.
It might not be comfortable doing so. Actually, I don’t think anyone finds it so comfortable getting up right after, however, you want to think of your health and push yourself to do so. Cf
6) Avoid Douching
I’ve never exactly been a fan of douching. All that squirting liquid into my lady part has never appealed to me.
It does to a lot of people though, since it is believed to keep you clean down there. The belief is that it deep cleans you, prevents pregnancies, removes odor, and also helps manage STIs.
On the contrary, though, The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists warns against it, revealing findings from research that women who douche increase their risk of PID (pelvic inflammatory disease).
Douching might make you feel “clean” for the moment, however, the long-term health risks just aren’t worth it.
7) Avoid Leaving a Pad or Tampon for Too Long
How long should you wear a pad or tampon?
The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) recommends going no longer than 4 to 6 hours. Depending on the severity of your flow, you should change your pad at least every 4 to 8 hours.
What happens when you wear a pad too long?
When you wear a pad or tampon longer than eight hours, you increase your risk of developing an infection, since the trapped moisture becomes a suitable breeding ground for bacteria.
There’s also the risk of developing Toxic Shock Syndrome(TSS), which, if left untreated, has been known to bring on other health complications like difficulty concentrating, memory loss, emotional disturbance, seizures, and organ failure.
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8) Using Certain Substances as Lube
You might need to use a lube sometimes if you don’t lubricate easily and most people just turn to any available oil around. However, research has shown this to be dangerous.
Besides the fact some oils could increase your risk of an infection, some oil-based lubes are quite thick and could take a while coming off the vagina.
Going deeper, if you are trying to get pregnant, then you want to stay off silicone-based oils as these are known to impact sperm motility and vitality.
9) Put Weed Up There to Relieve Pain
It might sound weird, but some people go to the extreme to get a solution for period pain and discomfort.
As someone who suffered dysmenorrhea (extreme period pain) in my teenage and early ties, I can relate to this extreme need for a solution. Thank God I never went this far though.
There are people who put weed up their coochies to get relief from period pain.
A company called Foria has made this “crazily” a lot easier by inventing marijuana capsules to help target the source of the pain directly.
Sadly, this drug is not just illegal, there is also no evidence to suggest it works. Which means you could get into trouble for nothing.
Proven effective remedies for period pain or dysmenorrhea include:
- Trying some yoga poses.
- Use a heating pad around your lower abdomen.
- Using stronger known painkillers like ibuprofen and naproxen.
- Undergoing acupuncture to help relax your nervous system.
- Trying out herbal teas like peppermint and chamomile.
- Increasing your magnesium intake through your diet or via a supplement.
- Opting for an abdominal massage using essential oils.
- Exercising to release the feel-good hormones, endorphins, which also double to help relieve pain.
- Go on birth-control pills of intrauterine devices
10) Pee Before Sex
Who would have thought using the loo right before the do was actually harmful to your vaginal and overall reproductive health? However, health practitioners have confirmed this to be true.
New York urologist David Kaufman reveals peeing right before sex actually increases your risk of UTIs. He also states it is the number one cause of post-coital UTIs as doing so produces a weaker stream after sex or the complete absence of the need to go.
So, if you aren’t so pressed, you want to delay peeing until after the moment or do so and wait a while to get chummy with your partner.
11) Sharing Undies
You would think this would never happen. I thought so too until I saw this done between two friends.
In their defense, they explained this practice helped deepen their bond. But to me and everyone else looking, it also helped deepen their risk of passing infections and other STIs between each other.
12) Sleeping in Your Underwear
Health practitioners recommend sleeping without undies.
Besides the heavenly feeling you get from sleeping commando (when you feel air touching you down there), it also allows that region to breathe and reduces moisture, reducing your risk of infections.
Frequently Asked Questions About Toxic Shock Syndrome (TSS)
What is Toxic Shock Syndrome?
Toxic Shock Syndrome is a rare bacterial infection that could become fatal. It happens as a result of the release of toxins from an overgrowth of the staphylococcus aureus or staph bacteria.
It is common to menstruating women, especially if you use super-absorbent tampons, although It has also been known to affect women who use menstrual sponges, cervical caps, and diaphragms.
How Common is Toxic Shock Syndrome?
There are fewer than 2,0000 reported cases of toxic shock syndrome and of this figure over one-third happen to women under 19 years of age.
Does Toxic Shock Syndrome Kill?
Toxic shock syndrome could become fatal if not managed in time as your body responds to the toxins released, leading to hypotensive shock where the heart and the lungs stop working.
What Are the Symptoms of Toxic Shock Syndrome?
Symptoms of this infection include:
- A high fever that could spike suddenly
- Low blood pressure
- Frequent throw-ups
- Watery stool
- Muscle aches
- Red eyes, mouth, and throat
How Long Does it Take to Get Toxic Shock From Tampons?
Symptoms could present as early as 3 to 5 days in women who use tampons.
Can Toxic Shock Syndrome Go Away on its Own?
Being a potentially fatal condition, TSS should be treated as a medical emergency and you want to seek medical help as soon as you notice the symptoms.
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