10 Sexual Hygiene Dos and Don’ts

In this modern age, science and research have given us loads of information about proper hygiene habits. We now have the ability to learn more than previous generations about proper care for our bodies, and this includes the less talked about genital areas. Certain habits that were considered clean and healthy 20 years ago have actually been proven to do more harm than good to our bodies, so it’s important for us to keep up with the times and learn the dos and don’ts of proper sexual hygiene.

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Do: Bathe together before sex.

Few people enjoy the intimate act of sex when they are feeling less than fresh. A great way to ensure that you are both feeling clean before you head to the bedroom is to shower together! Helping each other wash with warm water and mild soap will make you both feel better, and it works great as a foreplay activity as well.

GIF from No Strings Attached via Paramount Pictures

 

Don’t: Douche.

Douching is one of those activities that, although previously accepted as good for you, has actually proven to do harm. The inside of a vagina is self-cleaning, and when a woman douches, it messes with the internal pH balance and can lead to more infections. So douching should be done only when recommended by your gynecologist because of health issues, definitely not as a regular habit.

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Do: Urinate after having sex.

Women have a very high risk and tendency to get Urinary Tract Infections (UTIs) because of how short the female urethra is, and urinating after having sex is a very important way of preventing them, especially if you already are prone to getting UTIs. When you have sex, your vaginal bacteria can get pushed into your urethra, where it doesn’t belong. By peeing after sex, you push it back out before it can cause infections.

GIF from Game of Thrones via HBO

 

Don’t: Urinate immediately before having sex.

It’s a common misconception that just like a woman should urinate after sex, she should also go before sex in order to prevent UTIs from happening. In reality, peeing before having sex can actually increase the odds of getting a UTI. Before you have sex, there is no vaginal bacteria in the wrong place, so there’s nothing to be pushed out. However, if you uses the bathroom immediately before sex, then you won’t have enough urine in your bladder to properly push out the bacteria that accumulates during your intimate activities.

GIF from Bridesmaids via Universal Studios

 

Do: Use a condom.

Even if you are using another form of birth control, such as the pill or an IUD, all that does is prevent pregnancy. Condoms are important because in addition to preventing pregnancy, they protect you against most sexually transmitted diseases as well. It’s absolutely essential to use a condom if you are with a new partner and don’t know where he’s been. Once he shows you clean test results, you can talk about leaving it unwrapped, but until you see the results with your own eyes, never underestimate the importance of a condom.

GIF from Pretty Woman via Touchstone Pictures

 

Don’t: “Double-bag” it.

Some men and women believe that by using not just one, but two condoms at the same time, they are being extra safe, believing that even if one has a leak, the backup condom will protect them. However, using two condoms at once is definitely not advisable because it makes things extra slippery, and the risk of the condoms falling off is higher, leaving you open to unwanted pregnancy and diseases.

GIF from Game of Thrones via HBO

 

Do: Wipe from front to back after using the bathroom.

Did you know there’s actually a proper way to wipe or wash your genitals after using the toilet? A lot of women don’t, but it’s important to know because it can be an important way of preventing infections. When you wash or wipe, always go from front to back. Your urethra, vagina, and anus all have different natural bacteria, and wiping from front to back (starting with your urethra and ending with your anus) prevents it from ending up in the wrong places.

GIF from How I Met Your Mother via 20th Television

 

Don’t: Use whitening products down there.

There are very few of such products that are truly safe to use in such a sensitive region. Whitening products are full of chemicals that aren’t good for your body, whether it’s a soap, cream, or lotion, and just like douching, your body will be better off if you are not doing it. Besides, it’s really normal for a woman’s vagina to be darker than the rest of her body, and there’s absolutely nothing wrong with that!

GIF from Friends via Warner Bros. Domestic Television Distribution

 

Do: Use lubrication.

While lubrication isn’t always needed, it can sometimes be an important part of sexual safety. If you find sex to be painful, or if you don’t get very wet naturally when you are aroused, lubrication is important. It makes it easier for penetration and decreases pressure on the genitals. A lack of proper lubrication is one of the most common reasons for pain during sex, and it can also lead to vaginal tearing because of too much friction.

GIF from Scary Movie via Miramax

 

Don’t: Use oils or petroleum jelly in place of lube.

Lube is specifically designed to be used in your intimate places, and is generally safe to use. However, you should never use petroleum jelly or oils, such as baby oil, in place of a proper lubricant. Using petroleum jelly greatly increases your risk of getting a bacterial infection, and using oil has proven to much increase the risk of yeast infections. So, basically, don’t use any products inside your vagina that aren’t specifically designed for that purpose.

GIF from The Big Bang Theory via Warner Bros. Television

 

Sex is supposed to be a fun and pleasure-filled activity, so make the most of it by keeping your body healthy, especially your most intimate areas.

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