Undertaking a voyage on vaginal washing
Vagina is one of the most sensitive organs of the human body. Just like any other organ, vaginal hygiene is equally important as well. Vagina, however, is a self-defensive organ that has the capacity to self-lubricate and lean itself. The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists points out that your vagina cleans itself and keeps itself healthy by maintaining the correct pH balance and cleaning itself with natural secretions.
The lack of hygiene can lead to various infections including itching, dryness, sore vagina, Sexually Transmitted Diseases (STDs). We are aware of the fact that vagina is a lot more complex and multi-layered in structure than it seems on the outside. Hence, vagina may clean itself but the vulva requires utmost attention.
Let’s begin with the basics and understand what it is that we mean by vulva. In people with vaginas, the vulva is the outer part of the genitalia including labia majora, labia minora, mons pubis and clitoris. The outer layer and vagina both need to be dry in order to prevent the body from infections. The inability to maintain optimum health can lead to infections such as bacterial vaginosis, trichomonas and so on.
The need is to be mindful and conscious of our lifestyle as vagina is impacted by everything that we consume. One of the most basic ways to clean the vulva and vagina is by using warm water and then drying the area using a towel. The alternative way could be the usage of intimate hygiene products and balanced diet. Regular visits to a gynecologist helps in nipping the developing issues in the bud.
Optimum vaginal health and pH
The pH of vagina indicates the range of acidic or basic nature of the vaginal fluid. A healthy vagina has a pH that ranges between 3.8 and 4.5 . The acidic pH of the vagina acts as a barrier against breeding of harmful bacteria/ pathogens that helps against infections. Basically, an optimum acidic pH is the WBC (White Blood Cells) of vagina.
The pH of vagina fluctuates and changes before menstruation as the vaginal fluid begins to tend towards basic nature. People who are experiencing symptoms pertaining to menopause should also note and get checked the physical changes/ abnormalities they experience during the process. The reason as to why it is important is to be conscious of the dynamic nature of pH of the vaginal fluid. Hence, one should take care when one’s body goes through physical changes by including probiotics in one’s diet. The consumption of probiotics increases the presence of healthy bacteria and assists in maintaining the acidic nature of the vaginal fluid. Other practices can also include practicing safe sex, staying hydrated, eating anti-inflammatory foods.
Optimum vaginal health is a consequence of an amalgamation of factors ranging from physical, lifestyle habits, emotional health, menstrual and sexual health. Vaginal washing is a practice that should be treated as a given when it comes to overall hygiene of the human body. The world of people with a vagina is filled with products that cater to unrealistic beauty and cleanliness standards.
Please make sure to not fall into the façade that scented products pertaining to vaginal health sell to you. We know that vaginas were not supposed to smell like orchids or any other flower. Let’s accept the natural existence and traits of one of our best friends in order to feel healthy, comfortable in our own skin. The focal point of our concern should be a vagina that is free from infections, is not itchy and falls into the domain of acidic pH.
Cover Illustration: HealthShots