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What Is Douching

Published: 11 January 2006
Dear TeenHealthFX,
what type of metod is douching is it a a hormonal or something
Signed: What Is Douching

Dear What Is Douching,

 

A vaginal douche is not a hormonal treatment. It is the process of rinsing or cleansing the vagina by forcing water or another solution into the vaginal cavity to flush away vaginal discharge or other contents. Vaginal douches are available over-the-counter and are also available by prescription to treat certain conditions or prepare for certain procedures. The consensus today is that vaginal douching is NOT a healthy practice to engage in regularly, and should be done only under a doctor’s supervision if needed.

 

Reasons women may feel inclined use vaginal douches:

  • To rinse away any remaining menstrual blood at the end of the monthly period.
  • Some women FALSELY believe that douching following intercourse will prevent against pregnancy or STDs.
  • To reduce vaginal odors.
  • Doctors occasionally recommend vaginal douching for the treatment of chronic yeast infections or chronic bacterial infections; however, douching for this purpose should be done only under your doctor’s supervision and using the special solution provided by your doctor.

 

Health concerns related to douching:

  • Regular vaginal douching changes the delicate chemical balance of the vagina and can make a woman more susceptible to infections.
  • Douching can introduce new bacteria into the vagina, which can spread up through the cervix, uterus and fallopian tubes.
  • Researchers have found that women who douche regularly experience more vaginal irritations and infections, such as bacterial vaginosis and an increased number of STDs.
  • Increases risk of developing pelvic inflammatory disease (PID) – a chronic condition that can lead to infertility or even death, if untreated.
  • Douching does not protect against pregnancy or STD’s – woman who use douche for this purpose are putting themselves at risk for unwanted pregnancies and STDs.

The only safe and healthy way of cleaning the vagina is to let the vagina clean itself – the vagina has a natural cleansing process that involves vaginal mucous secretions. When bathing or showering use warm water and gentle unscented soap to cleanse the outer area of the vagina. Other feminine hygiene products, such as soaps, powders and sprays, are not necessary and may lead to irritation of sensitive tissues.

Signed: TeenHealthFX

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