All the women are concerned about their vaginal health, which is quite normal. The vagina is very sensitive and has a slightly acidic pH. The normal vaginal pH ranges from 3.8 to 4.5. This acidic nature of the vagina is a natural barrier to any microbial growth.
The pH of the vagina alters (or turns alkaline) when it comes in contact with a foreign substance or catches an infection. Even, the slightly basic nature of menstrual blood can cause changes in the vaginal pH. But, it is not a major concern as the vagina regains the normal pH after menstruation.
Whenever the vagina is in an unhealthy condition, it shows symptoms like irritation, itching, swelling, foul odor discharge, burning sensation, and pain. Fret not, you can keep vaginal complications at bay by following a few simple and effective tips.
Let’s take a look at all the do’s that will ensure that your vaginal pH is healthy:
- The simplest and the best way to ensure a healthy vagina is to maintain proper hygiene. Clean vulva significantly lowers the chances of your vagina catching any infections.
- Wash the vulva with lukewarm water every day. This rinses off the dirt and debris from the vulva.
- Always wipe yourself properly after using the toilet (wipe from front to back).
- Urinating after sex helps in releasing unwanted bacteria and prevents STIs (sexually transmitted infections). (Also Read: What to do After Sex to Keep Your Vagina Healthy? )
- Choose comfortable cotton panties over tight fitted and synthetic ones. This allows the skin to breathe and retain normal moisture.
- Change the damp underwear immediately when you experience heavy discharge. Also, change your clothes after strenuous activities that cause sweating such as exercising, yoga, gymming, running, etc.
- Use different condoms for vaginal and anal sex. This prevents the entry of unwanted bacteria that can disturb the normal vaginal pH.
- Change your tampons or sanitary pads within 4-5 hours to avoid any foul smell or unwanted bacterial growth.
- Drink lots of water, healthy fluids and nutrient-rich diet for maintaining a healthy vagina. Especially, including yogurt in your regular diet is a win-win situation. Yogurt keeps the skin, digestive system, and the reproductive system healthy. It is the best natural way to keep vaginal yeast infections away.
- Use only water-based lubricants during sex to maintain the adequate pH of the vagina.
The Don’ts you must remember to keep your vagina healthy:
If you wish to remain healthy, it is wise to know what to do, but even wiser to know what not to do. Keep the following things in mind and you are likely to have minimum complications with your vagina.
- Do not use scent products to clean the vagina. Scented gels and soaps often lead to irritation and allergy in the vagina
- Douching does not help in getting rid of the vaginal odor. Too much douching only disturbs the normal vaginal pH and only aggravates the root cause.
- Avoid sharing sex toys. Sharing them is a potential risk for catching any STIs.
- Do not use petroleum jelly or oil-based lubricants for lubricating the vagina. Such lubricants have a tendency to cause inflammation in the vagina.
- Refrain from inserting anything in the vagina, until it is prescribed by the doctor. Strictly refrain from inserting any food items like garlic, vinegar, and salt in your vagina. This may result in irritation or inflammation. Use products that are approved by your gynecologist.
- Do not stay for hours in wet clothes. Doing so can trigger unhealthy microbes to build up in the vulva.
- Do not leave any symptoms of vaginal infections untreated. Any vaginal infection only grows severe when you do not receive proper treatment.
- Avoid rubbing the vulva too hard to dry it up, just gently pat it dry. Rubbing harshly results in vaginal dryness as well.
- Popping in too many antibiotics is a big NO! If you frequently need to consume antibiotics, then there are high chances of your vaginal pH getting altered. Although antibiotics act on bad bacteria, it somehow also affects the favorable bacteria.
A Note not to miss out
There are plenty of food options that are just right to keep your vagina healthy and you happy. Let’s quickly know about all those amazing foods that you must eat:
- Greek yogurt
- Curly kale
- Sweet potato
Having the above-mentioned foods will bring significant changes to your vaginal health in just a few days.
So, you can now see that it’s not at all complicated to maintain optimum vaginal pH. Now, that you know all the do’s and don’ts, spread the word and help other ladies know about them too.