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8 tips to keep your vagina happy and healthy

By Sraboni Basu October 3, 06:00 am
Your vagina is home to many friendly bacteria. A change or imbalance in these bacteria can lead to infections. Read our simple tips to keep your vagina healthy.

The vagina, like the rest of our body, needs to be kept clean. All it takes are a few simple changes to be followed regularly. Vaginal health depends upon your overall health and immunity. Besides these tips, a healthy diet, regular exercise, sound sleep, and reduced stress are essential for good health.

Yeast infections

Excessive growth of yeast can trigger infections. They are quite common. Yeast is naturally present in the vagina. Symptoms of vaginal yeast infections are itchiness, soreness, burning sensation while passing urine or during intercourse, or white or colourless discharge.
You can also catch yeast infection if your immune system is down or if you take antibiotics. 

Yoghurt and probiotics help counter yeast infections as they have anti-fungal, antibiotic, and antibacterial properties. However, one must immediately consult a doctor if any of these symptoms occur.

Birth control and yeast infections

If you’re a yeast infection prone woman or have experienced repeated yeast infections, consult your doctor before going on birth control with high levels of estrogen. Consider switching to birth control that is predominantly progesterone.

Healthy undies

That sexy lingerie could also mean trouble. For regular wear, always go for cotton or silk lingerie. They absorb moisture and help to keep the vagina dry. It is better to avoid synthetic, nylon, or blended materials that hold moisture close to the skin. The fancy, sexy lingerie can be used for special days!

Scented products: stay away

Scented soaps, deodorants, and perfumed pads or tampons can disrupt the vagina’s natural balance. The vaginal smells in a certain way because it is meant to do so. The vagina can also clean itself.

Just don’t forget to change your pads and tampons regularly, otherwise, they can provide a home for nasty bacteria to grow.

Keep things dry

It is advisable not to sit around in your wet swimsuit or sweaty gym clothes. Moisture can give bacteria a happy space to grow. Also, try to avoid extremely tight fitting pantyhose, tights, jeans, and leggings for long periods. Even they can cause bacteria to grow and lead to infections. Opt for loose airy clothes like skirts, dresses that offer regular airflow.

Daily cleaning

The vagina should be cleaned properly daily. Front to back to avoid anal bacteria entering the vagina. All you need is water and a mild, unscented soap. There is no need for douching! That can just mess up the bacterial balance.

Post-sex hygiene

Cleaning up after intercourse or masturbation is important. It is advisable to pee after sex or take a shower with baby soap. Residual body fluids or lubricants may lead to infections. 

Toilet trouble

It is preferable to avoid western style public toilets unless they are disinfected well. You aren't susceptible to yeast infections but public toilets could be infected with other dangerous and unknown bacteria. Better safe than sorry!

 

Do you have any more tips or queries to share with us? Join our discussion on Facebook: Love Matters Naija and Love Matters Kenya.

Did you learn something new?

Comments

Hey Opeyemi, you can use warm water to wash your vulva, but it’s not a good idea to use soap, especially on your inner labia and inside your vagina. This is because soap can upset the natural balance of bacteria and actually make you more likely to get yeast (fungal) infections. It can also be a cause of itching and irritation or pain during intercourse. If you do choose to wash your labia with soap, use a gentle one without strong perfumes like baby soap. Check out the following article;- https://lovemattersafrica.com/our-bodies/female-body/8-tips-to-keep-your-vagina-happy-and-healthy

Hi Rosemary, every vagina has a certain smell. That's natural and normal. There are sweat glands around your genitals that cause that smell. They are similar to the ones found in your armpits. But, if you start smelling fishy or unpleasantly different, go see a doctor. It could be a sign of infection. Check out the following article for additional tips;- https://lovemattersafrica.com/our-bodies/genital-hygiene-dos-and-donts

Shontelle
Mon, 08/12/2019 - 04:14 pm
Good day love matters been treating yeast infection for a while now the other symptoms are gone but I've been dealing with a discharge till now. Pls help

Hi Shontelle, vaginal discharge, odour, or smell, is normal. However, changes in quantity, texture, color and odour can be a sign for something that's not right and this may require a close look by a healthcare provider. Have a look at the following articles for more information;- 
https://lovemattersafrica.com/safe-sex/stds-stis/yeast-infections-top-facts

https://lovemattersafrica.com/our-bodies/female-body/vaginal-discharge-and-odour-top-facts

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