The Pros and Cons of Vaginal Douches

Young women often begin using vaginal douche because their mothers use them or because they are concerned about vaginal odor. However, there are mixed opinions about this product. While some women state the douche leaves them feeling clean, others warn about the dangers of vaginal douching. Let’s take a closer look at the pros and cons of vaginal douche to see if this product is great for cleaning or actually dangerous enough to cause serious medical issues.

Reduces Odor

Vaginal douching can eliminate odor for a short period of time. Many women douche at least once a week to help reduce odor. However, doctors claim that washing with soap and water is enough to keep the vaginal area clean. It’s also important to note that a slight odor is perfectly normal.

Removes Good Bacteria

Something many women don’t realize is that vaginal douche can actually kill off the good bacteria in the vagina. The vagina contains both good and bad bacteria that balance each other out. Using a douche can disrupt the balance and cause infections. Once the infection is there, additional douching can push the infection into the fallopian tubes, ovaries and other parts of the reproductive system.

Gives a Sense of Feeling Clean

Many women use a vaginal douche because they claim it leaves them feeling fresh and clean. It might be used after a period to remove menstrual blood or after sexual intercourse. However, there are no studies that have actually proved that vaginal douching does clean the vagina.

Can Alter PAP Smear Results

It’s easy to feel uncomfortable about a strong odor coming from the vagina. However, douching before getting a PAP smear may alter the results. Instead of getting an accurate culture from your vagina, the douche may cause skewed results. Also, if you’re experiencing a strong odor, the gynecologist needs to know about it. As strange as it may seem, the odor will allow her to more accurately diagnose any vaginal infections or diseases you may have.

May Lead to Medical Problems

Last, but not least, vaginal douche can lead to medical problems. Not only can it push infections higher into the reproductive system, but women that use douche are more likely to get cervical cancer. It can also cause pelvic inflammatory disease and may cause ectopic pregnancies.

Doctors actually recommend that women not use vaginal douches because the risks far outweigh any benefits douche provides.