Do’s and Dont’s of Vaginal Douche

Many women have probably heard of the vaginal douche but never talk about it because they don’t know what it is…and they can’t pronounce it.

IMG_3556Douche comes from a french term meaning “to wash” or “to soak”. It is pronounced as “doosh”.

Vaginal douching has been an old practice. Almost 40% of women in the United States use the douche. Some women have the habit of using the douche as part of their personal cleansing regimen to remove vaginal odors and discharges especially after the menstrual period.

There are, however, conflicting reports from the medical community as to the risks and benefits of using this method of cleansing.

Using the douche under the guidance of your health professional may have positive effects on the female reproductive system especially if you follow these rules:

  1. Use the douche only once a month. The vagina is a self-cleansing organ. It harbors the good bacteria, lactobacilli, to produce acid. It is this acid that kills the bad bacteria. Frequent douching can wash away these lactobacilli. On the other hand, as women age, they have less and less natural lactobacilli. There is truth in the saying that older women are no longer acidic. “Wala nang asim.” Therefore, using an acid douche can be beneficial because it will bring back the acidity of the vagina and kill the bad bacteria.
  2. Douche only after 1-2 days from the last day of menstrual bleeding. Do not douche when you have your period because this might push menstrual blood backward into the uterus. Proper timing of the douche will get rid of the vaginal odor that follows menstruation.
  3. Do not douche when you are ovulating. Ovulation occurs during the middle of your cycle. This is noted by a clear, egg-white-looking vaginal discharge. Avoid douching during this time because the cervix is open and the fallopian tubes are also highly mobile. Douching on these days might lead to pelvic inflammatory disease.
  4. Douching is not a contraceptive method. Do not use the douche after sex with the intention of “washing out” the sperm. In fact, the douche might even enhance the movement of the sperm into the fallopian tubes.
  5. Menopausal women can benefit from a once-a-month douche to cleanse the vaginal canal. Women who no longer get their menstruation whether due to natural or surgical menopause often complain of occasional yellow or green discharge. These are normal secretions of the vagina that are supposed to be “washed” out along with the monthly period. By douching once a month, this yellow-green substance can be cleansed in a similar manner as having a regular menstrual flow.
  6. The suggested formula for a monthly acidic douche is composed of: 2 tablespoons of Distilled White Vinegar plus 100-200ml Distilled Water depending on the size of your vaginal douche.
  7. Strict hygiene, proper cleansing and storage of the vaginal douche is very important. Use a specific toothbrush dedicated exclusively for cleaning the douche after each use, particularly the holes and the spout. Dry the douche thoroughly inside and out. Store the douche in a dry place, probably your underwear drawer. Do not leave the douche inside the bathroom or shower area as this will allow molds to grow due to the moist and damp surroundings.
  8. Different physicians have different opinions regarding the douche. I recommend the douche because of the benefits I have observed amongst my patients. For orders, please call 659-0058 and schedule a pick up. Deliveries may be arranged for a minimal fee.
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