An estimate of American women in the age group of 15 to 44 years says that they are into vaginal douche. The higher rates are seen among the African American women. The main reason for douching is to remove any unpleasant odor, reduce the chances of sexually transmitted diseases and reduces the chances of pregnancy after intercourse. But health experts point to the fact that douching is not effective for any of the above purposes. They feel that it can increase the chance of infections, pregnancy complications, along with other health problems.
What douching means?
The word douching derives its name from the French word douche which means to wash. The vagina is washed with a mixture of water and vinegar. The douches which are sold in the chemist shops do contain fragrances and antiseptics. It comes in a bottle or bag and is sprayed into the vagina.
Some women are of the opinion that douching makes them cleaner. But there is very little scientific evidence to prove this fact.
The advantages of douching
In the overall context the risks of douching outnumber the benefits of douching. Let us analyze a few of the problems associated with the same
- Vaginal infections- Douching is known to have an impact on the natural bacteria in your vagina referred to as vaginal flora. The changes make it more favorable for the bacteria to survive and leads to infection. Studies point to the fact that women who stopped douching have lesser chances of vaginal infections. When you have such sort of infections it can increase the risk of preterm labor along with sexually transmitted infections.
- Cervical cancer- Douching at least once in a week does increase the chances of cervical cancer to a large extent.
- Complications in pregnancy- Women who douche once in a week, have more difficult in getting pregnant than women who do not indulge in the same practice. Douching is also known to increase the chances of ectopic pregnancy by high as 76 %. When such a pregnancy occurs, the embryo implants outside the uterus. The more a women douches the greater chances of such a pregnancy occurring in the first place.
- Pelvic inflammation disease- it is an infection of the uterus or the fallopian tubes or ovaries. Research points to the fact that women who douche have a chance of having PID by high as 73 %
According to the view point of health experts any women whether normal or douching pregnancy should not be part of it. Any form of vaginal odor is common and it can be cleaned with hot water when you bath or let it clean itself by the process of mucus. A point to consider is that it may not smell like a rose garden and odor is bound to emerge at certain times. But if you feel that the odor is too large or strong vaginal discharge is observed it is suggested to get in touch with a health care service provider who will guide you.