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- Patient Comments: Vaginal Douche (Douching) - Side Effects
- Patient Comments: Vaginal Douching - Complications
- What is vaginal douching?
- Is vaginal douching necessary?
- Can douching be harmful?
- What is the best way to clean the vagina?
- Can douching help relieve vaginal discharge, odor, pain, itching, or burning?
- Can douching after sex prevent pregnancy?
- Can douching after sex prevent sexually-transmitted diseases (STDs)?
- Can douching affect fertility or pregnancy?
Can douching be harmful?
Yes, in some women, douching can lead to the spread of an infection or even the development of an infection by altering the balance of normal bacteria that are present in the vagina, as discussed previously. The risk of both bacterial vaginosis and sexually-transmitted diseases may be increased by douching. Douching can also cause vaginal irritation.
What is the best way to clean the vagina?
The vagina produces mucus, which acts as a natural cleansing agent to wash away blood, semen, and vaginal discharge. Washing the outside of the vagina with mild soap and water with regular bathing is sufficient for good hygiene.
Can douching help relieve vaginal discharge, odor, pain, itching, or burning?
An abnormal vaginal odor, discharge, or discomfort can signal the presence of an infection, so douching to relieve the symptom would only avoid the underlying problem and might even make the infection worse. If you have abnormal vaginal odor or discharge, pain, burning, or itching, it's important to see your health-care professional for diagnosis and treatment. Douching before the doctor's visit can make it more difficult to diagnose the problem and recommend the right therapy.