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How To Prevent Vaginal Infections?

Dr. Shilpa Bansal Agrawal 91% (363 ratings)
MBBS, MD - Obstetrtics & Gynaecology, DNB, Fellowship in Infertility
Gynaecologist, Mumbai  •  12 years experience
How To Prevent Vaginal Infections?

An infection in a woman’s reproductive organ is characterized by pain, discomfort, itching, burning sensations and a foul smell. Even normally, a women’s reproductive organ creates a discharge which is a clear liquid but slightly cloudy. However, when this discharge becomes abnormal and has a foul smell, it could be a tell tale sign for a vaginal infection.

Symptoms of Vaginal Discharge:

  1. Your vaginal discharge is heavier than usual.

  2. The smell seems different and can be quite offensive.

  3. The color of your vaginal discharge may also change.

  4. Your vagina can swell and become sore.

  5. Itching and burning sensations are also felt.

  6. Sex is extremely uncomfortable and painful.

What causes a vaginal infection?

Sometimes vaginal discharges happen due to an allergic reaction or irritation caused by the use of products such as vaginal douches and creams.

Vaginal infections which are not contagious in nature can be caused by detergents, fabric softeners, perfumed soaps and vaginal sprays which may change the natural, chemical and bacterial balance of the organ.

Vaginal infections are also quite commonly caused by sexually transmitted diseases such as gonorrhea, Chlamydia, trichomoniasis, human papillomavirus (HPV) and herpes among others.

How can you prevent vaginal infections?

  1. Keep your genital area dry and clean – Every time you have a bath, clean your vagina with water and don’t use chemical or vaginal washes which can only make things worse. Vaginal infections can also occur due to the disturbance of the ph level (the balance of alkaline and acidic chemicals) in your vagina. Thus use only water to wash and maintain general hygiene.

  2. Avoid wearing underwear made out of nylon and synthetic material – These materials trap heat and moisture in your vagina and can make them smelly and itchy. Cotton underwear is recommended to prevent vaginal infections and also for general health.

  3. Eating yogurt or other pro-biotics can prevent vaginal infection – Any healthy vagina has a balance of many forms of bacteria and fungus. If you have pro-biotics such as plain yoghurts or other specially formulated foods, then it will help maintain the balance and prevent infections from happening.

  4. Use condoms – Always use either a female condom or ask your partner to use a male condom before engaging in intercourse. This will prevent the passing of sexually transmitted diseases which are a leading cause of vaginal infections.

If you wish to discuss about any specific problem, you can consult the doctor and ask a free question.

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