Homehealth & wellbeingpuberty & your bodywhat’s the best way to look after my vagina?

What’s the best way to look after my vagina?

For those of us with vaginas, did you know that it’s just like a little ecosystem? This means it maintains and cleans itself. 

(Not sure which bit is which? Read this post on how female anatomies work and get the lowdown on what’s what. Basically, it’s inside you – and you never have to clean in there.)

Important: You should never put anything inside your vagina with the intention of cleaning it. This means that you should never put any soaps, douches, dettol, or bleach (!) or any other kind of cleaning product inside your vagina. NEVER.

Why is it important to keep soap out of your vagina?

If you do use soap down there, you could disrupt the delicate balance of bacteria which keeps your vagina functioning normally. And if this good bacteria gets killed off, you could end up with Vaginal Thrush or Bacteria Vaginosis. Or if you get soap inside your urethra (where wee comes out from) you could get a Urinary Tract Infection (UTI) which will make you feel really unwell.

How to clean your vagina
  1. Spread your labia (these are the ‘lips’ of your vaginal area)
  2. With some warm water, use your hand (you could also use a wash cloth) to gently clean around the folds
  3. And that’s it!
Someone dipping their fingers in a jar with yellowish liquid inside.
What should I do if my vagina smells?

Vaginas are meant to have a mild scent and every vagina has its own perfume. This is a completely normal part of being human. 

If it is particularly pungent or noticeable, this could be a sign of infection. If you’re worried about a possible infection, please talk to your doctor. You might need some antibiotics to help clear it up.

Where to get help

If you need support with your sexual health, speak to a professional:

Family Planning Alliance Australia has links to sexual health clinics around the country. Visiting a sexual health clinic is really useful if you want to talk to someone face-to-face about your body.

Need someone to talk to? Free, confidential support is available.

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