No one is completely at ease talking about the health of their intimate areas. It’s something we gloss over in magazines and only really think about when discomfort occurs. So how do we prevent this?
Carla Yssel from intimate care brand Femagene®, says that the number one priority on the list should be maintaining a healthy vaginal pH. “pH is a measure of the acidity or alkalinity in the body. A healthy vaginal pH is between 3.8 and 4.5, which indicates that the vagina is healthiest when its pH is acidic,” says Yssel.
When the vagina is at the perfect pH level it is protected from certain bacteria which may lead to infection and diseases. “An unbalanced pH can lead to inflammation of the vaginal tissue and general irritation,” says Yssel.
She lists a few tips to ensure perfect vaginal pH and health:
- Keep your good bacteria happy: good vaginal bacteria act as guardians against unwanted ‘pathogenic’ bacteria. When these good bacteria are threatened (by high pH, antibiotics, douches etc.), then they are less able to protect the vagina. Choose a pH balanced feminine hygiene product. Using soap with a low, balanced pH is important to maintain the pH level of your vagina.
- Find a wash that’s free from irritants such as fragrances and colourants. Look for a wash that can offer skin protection such as Femagene® Sensitive Wash that can also assist to counter bad unwanted odours. Use a pH balanced soap that does not disrupt your vaginal pH.
- Avoid practices like douching, the vagina is self-cleaning and can often be irritated by this process.
- Always wipe from front to back. This might seem obvious, but usually our young daughters suffer from the side effect of doing it wrong, infecting the vaginal area. Teaching your girls this from as young as possible will help create a habit.
“Vaginal health is not something that we focus on, and is easily maintained with a few lifestyle changes,” says Yssel. “For such an important part of the body, women need to be spending more time prioritising their intimate areas.”
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