Can douching after sex prevent sexually transmitted infections

by Shaun Damon


Douching is the process of washing out the vagina using water or solutions of other fluids. Douches are usually available as prepackaged mixtures of water and vinegar, iodine or baking soda. They are generally available at grocery shops or drug stores. Douches come in bottle form and have nozzle or tubes, through which the mixture can be squirted into the vagina. Women mainly practice douching because they are of the opinion that it has many health benefits. In most cases, women douche in order to cleanse the vagina, to eliminate odors, to wash away menstrual blood, to prevent pregnancy and to avoid contracting STDs or sexually transmitted diseases. However, it is important to note that douching can be more harmful, than beneficial.

Most gynecologists and doctors propose that women should avoid engaging in douching. There are certain bacteria and other microorganisms that are naturally present in the vagina. This is referred to as vaginal flora. The level of these bacteria is kept in check due to the natural acidity of the vagina. What douching does is that it upsets this naturally maintained balance. This increases a woman's vulnerability to vaginal infections.

If there are already vaginal infections present, douching only serves to push them further up into the uterus, ovaries and fallopian tube. Studies have also shown that women who engage in douching are affected with more health issues that women who don't. These health problems include vaginal infections which are known as bacterial vaginosis, vaginal irritation, PID or pelvic inflammatory disease and STDs or sexually transmitted diseases. Pelvic inflammatory disease is an infection of the uterus, ovaries and fallopian tube. It results when bacteria travel from the vagina to the cervix and into the reproductive system. If untreated, this condition may hamper fertility. The risk of ectopic pregnancy is also increased due to this infection. PID, bacterial vaginosis and STDs can all result in serious complications during pregnancy. Douching also does not help to prevent pregnancy, but may instead serve to increase the chances of pregnancy by pushing the sperm further into the cervix.

The only way to prevent sexually transmitted diseases is to abstain from sexual relations or to practice safer sex. Using latex condoms during sexual intercourse, avoiding contact with infected areas or sores on the genitals and preventing the exchange of bodily fluids such as blood, vaginal secretions and semen will help to reduce the possibilities of developing sexually transmitted diseases.


Warning: The reader of this article should exercise all precautionary measures while following instructions on the home remedies from this article. Avoid using any of these products if you are allergic to it. The responsibility lies with the reader and not with the site or the writer.
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