We are constantly hearing about new ways to health your gut microbiome…but what about your vaginal microbiome? It is essential to keep your vagina healthy and functioning properly. Did you know that maintaining a healthy vaginal microbiome is key to this? The vaginal microbiome is the delicate balance of bacteria, fungi, and other microorganisms living inside the vagina. If the microbiome is off-balance, it can lead to uncomfortable symptoms like irritation, inflammation, and even infections. Fortunately, there are simple steps you can take to help heal and protect your vaginal microbiome. In this blog post, we’ll discuss some of these steps, so keep reading to find out more.
Practice Vuvlvovaginal Hygiene
The vagina is self-cleaning and does not require internal cleaning. To ensure that your vagina stays healthy, you should rinse your vulva with lukewarm water and only use gentle, fragrance-free soaps. You should avoid using anything scented around the vulva, as this can throw off the pH balance and lead to irritation. If you are using any kind of soap or product near the vulva, make sure to rinse it off thoroughly. It is also important to note that if you have an infection, it is best to avoid soaps altogether. Because when it comes to vulvovaginal health: the gentler the better.
Eat Probiotic Foods
Probiotics are beneficial bacteria that help keep your vaginal microbiome healthy. Eating foods high in probiotics can help feed the good bacteria in your vagina and help maintain a balanced microbiome. Examples of probiotic foods include yogurt, kefir, miso, tempeh, sauerkraut, kimchi, and other fermented vegetables. You can also take a daily probiotic that is specifically designed to benefit the vaginal microbiome. (try our probiotic HERE) These are oftentimes advertised as ‘probiotics for women,’ but we prefer to say they’re probiotics for people with vaginas. Keepin’ it inclusive, ya know? These probiotics contain beneficial bacterial strains such as Lactobacillus rhamnosus, Lactobacillus reuteri, Lactobacillus plantarum, and Bifidobacterium longum which have been proven to improve overall vaginal health.
Read More: Probiotic Benefits On the Vaginal Microbiome
Douching can throw off the natural pH balance in the vagina and lead to an increase in vaginal infections. It may also strip away beneficial bacteria that are necessary for a healthy vagina microbiome. Not only can douching damage the good bacteria, but it can also introduce new bacteria which can cause infections. Additionally, douching can irritate the walls of the vagina and cause discomfort. So say it with us: NO DOUCHING!
Use Natural Lubricants
The use of lubricants can be beneficial for many reasons, but some lubes contain ingredients that can disrupt the delicate balance of the vaginal microbiome. Certain lubricants may increase the risk of irritation, infection, and dryness. When choosing a lubricant, it is best to select one that is free of chemical additives and fragrances, as these are known to be irritating and damaging to the vagina. Luckily, there are plenty of gentle and all-natural lubricants on the market now. (Momotaro Apotheca Recommends: Lark Love and Good Clean Love) So shop around to see which lubricant is right for you and your unique body.
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Don't Use Antibiotics *Unless Absolutely Necessary*
Antibiotics are powerful medications that kill bacteria. While this can be beneficial in treating a variety of infections, it can also be damaging to your vagina. Antibiotics can kill off the beneficial bacteria that exist in the vagina, making you more susceptible to infections. Additionally, taking antibiotics can disrupt the delicate balance of your microbiome and make it harder for your body to fight off bad bacteria. It is important to remember that antibiotics should only be used if absolutely necessary and always consult with your medical provider about what treatment plan is best for you.
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Wear Cotton Underwear
When it comes to the health of your vagina microbiome, the type of underwear you choose can make a huge difference. While lace or other synthetic fabrics may look pretty and feel comfortable, they are not the best choice for keeping your vagina healthy. Cotton underwear is the most breathable option, allowing air to flow freely around the area and helping to keep it dry and free from moisture. This reduces the risk of bacteria overgrowth and yeast infections, as well as providing greater comfort. Cotton underwear also helps wick away any moisture that may occur during physical activity or in hot weather, further reducing the risk of irritation and infection. So, when it comes to protecting your vagina microbiome, opt for cotton undies!
Taking care of your vaginal microbiome is an essential part of vaginal health and wellness.
It helps to keep your body balanced and free from infections, as well as providing protection against more serious health issues. By practicing vuvlvovaginal hygiene, eating probiotic foods, avoiding douching, using natural lubricants, and wearing cotton underwear, you can take care of your vagina microbiome and help to protect your overall health. But this is by no means a comprehensive list and we're always here to learn more, so leave your tried-and-true vaginal health tips below. Because we're all on this vulvovaginal health journey together!
Momotaro Apotheca and its materials are not intended to treat, diagnose, cure or prevent any disease. All material on Momotaro Apotheca is provided for educational purposes only. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified healthcare provider for any questions you have regarding a medical condition.