No, you should not douche routinely to clean the inside of your vagina. Studies have shown that Douching can do more harm than good. It strips away the natural ecosystem and defenses of the vaginal lining that can defend you from infections and HIV. Douching can propel bacteria up thru the cervix and into the uterus, where it can cause serious infections and contribute to PID [pelvic inflammatory disease] in some cases.
I teach women that the vagina is like a “self-cleaning oven” - it should take care of itself! Staying well hydrated, eating a healthy balanced diet, and using key nutrients daily- helps all your body defenses work better, including the vagina! Using condoms 100% of the time protects you from contact to semen; helps to prevent sexually transmitted infections, and can help keep the vagina in harmony as well.
Vaginal discharge or odors can be a sign of bacterial or yeast infection that require evaluation and short term treatments, but not douching. Lower estrogen and higher pH vagina of menopause can be more prone to this odor causing bacteria as well but douching is not usually the answer.
If you think you need to Douche, don’t! If you have a discharge or odor, or you are in menopause and experiencing changes to the vagina, see your local GYN Nurse Practitioner or Physician for a proper evaluation, help is available!
More Answers from Marcy Holmes, MSN