Easiest ways to keep a check on unhygienic intimate practices that may lead to bigger unknown problems
Many women, including those who live in metro cities, avoid discussing intimate hygiene. It is considered unacceptable for a woman to talk about the health issue openly, as a result, they suffer from poor vaginal hygiene that can lead to medical problems such as fungal infections, reproductive issues and UTIs.
There are some signs and symptoms that one should not ignore and consult the doctor immediately such as stinky, excessive, or unusual vaginal discharge. In an interview with HT Lifestyle, Dr Teena Abishek, Prenatal and Lactation consultant, Consulting Doctor at Laiqa, advised, “Never ignore itchy vagina and vaginal pain as it can indicate an underlying health condition. There are a few simple hygiene practices to ensure a healthy genital and avoid poor vaginal hygiene.”
She added, “Always wipe the intimate area after urinating to keep it dry. On your period days, properly clean the area every time you visit the washroom and change the sanitary napkin after four to six hours. Try to avoid the use of harsh soaps or scented products for intimate areas. These easy yet beneficial steps keep you on a healthy track, which further helps you to avoid some serious health issues.”
Dr Saima Naz Khan, Senior Manager- Scientific Affairs at Genes2Me, revealed, “Numerous beneficial bacteria (lactobacilli) are found in the vagina that helps to keep the microbial environment balanced and prevent infections. The vaginal mucosa, which extends from the cervix’s outer surface to the vaginal opening, can self-clean through the production of natural secretions. Numerous external or internal imbalances, behavioural patterns, or other factors can lead to dysbiosis or the disruption of healthy microbial activities, resulting in vaginal or urinary tract infections. Unhygienic intimate practices are intricately linked with several risk infections, such as yeast infection, urinary tract infection, bacterial infections, infertility and birth complications.”
She suggested, “To rule out any infections, see a gynaecologist annually and perform regular PAP Smear testing and biochemical tests. After consulting with your gynaecologist, it is crucial only to use clinical products to preserve intimate cleanliness. Managing one’s lifestyle can also significantly contribute to preventing these illnesses and avoiding the problem entirely.”