Vaginas are amazing so it shouldn’t come as a surprise that they clean themselves! In order to stay clean and healthy, they have their own pH balance. It means that they regulate the number of bacteria they produce.
Cleaning your vagina with soap disrupts this balance and can cause lots of side-effects. Soaps can make your vagina itchy and uncomfortable and give you yeast infections, which can create a burning sensation. All you need to do to keep your vulva clean is to rinse it with water in the shower.
A douche squirts water (sometimes scented) inside the vagina in order to ‘clean’ it. However, it can cause health problems. The pH balance (bacteria) in the vagina is very fragile and squirting water into it not only introduces unwanted bacteria in the vagina but can also push bacteria further up into the reproductive organs.
Research suggests that douching significantly increases the chances of Pelvic Inflammatory Disease, which affects the uterus, fallopian tubes, and ovaries. If left untreated this can cause infertility.
Although you may not realise it, certain edible things that you use to spice up your sex life like chocolate sauce and whipped cream are full of sugar. Sugar feeds bad bacteria and things like chocolate sauce can dry your skin. Putting sugary things into your vagina can cause infections and irritations. It’s best to use sugary sauces over your upper body.
Related: Why Is My Vagina Dry?
Flavoured condoms were created for oral sex and not for penetrative sex. They usually contain sugar (which makes them taste so nice) and are usually scented to suit their flavour (which makes them smell nice too). However, both sugar and scent can cause vaginal infections so unless you really like them for oral sex, it’s best not to use them at all.
Putting a banana into your vagina may seem like a fun way to spice things up or a cheap alternative to a sex toy. But your vagina may not feel the same way! Even if you wash the fruit or vegetable beforehand, it could still carry bacteria causing infections that are harmful to your vagina.
A safe alternative is putting a condom on any penis-shaped fruit or vegetable to prevent direct contact. Any other type of food play should avoid your vagina entirely.
Sex toys can be a great addition to your sex life. There are hundreds of variations to suit everybody’s needs.
However, jelly rubber sex toys are not always safe in the long run. Preliminary research has found that they could cause infections. This happens when the sex toy wears out and small cuts and holes appear. Even if you clean the sex toy well after each use, bacteria can stay inside these small holes and cause infections next time you use it. Instead of buying jelly rubber sex toys, go for silicone, stainless steel, or hard plastic.
People have been found to use drugs and alcohol in their vaginas. There has been a craze in America of putting a vodka-soaked tampon into the vagina to get drunk quicker. This can be dangerous.
Drugs and alcohol are full of chemicals and still pose the same, if not higher risks if you put them in your vagina than any other method of consumption. Absorbing alcohol through your vagina can increase the risks of alcohol poisoning as it is absorbed directly into the bloodstream without being filtered through the liver first.
The vagina is also very sensitive. These chemicals cause painful burning sensations, whilst killing the healthy bacteria that keep your vagina clean and healthy. Using high amounts could cause anything from an infection to an overdose and should not be risked.
Lastly, you may feel tempted to try fairness creams around your vagina but don’t! Fairness creams, in general, can be very dangerous as many contain mercury. It can cause psychosis and peripheral neuropathy, which damages nerves.
You may believe that brand creams are less dangerous but studies have found that this is not the case. So not only should you not use these creams around your vagina but you should avoid using them on your body altogether.