PRINCETON, N.J.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--As summer arrives, bringing warm weather, beach vacations, and moments of relaxation, it’s important to address the health concerns that accompany the season. Factors like heat, humidity, sweat, and lifestyle choices, can impact vaginal health by disrupting the natural pH balance of the vagina, leading to irritation and discomfort. Dr. Maria Sophocles, gynecologist and medical director of Women’s Healthcare of Princeton, N.J., shares her expert insights on managing these challenges and maintaining proper vaginal health throughout the summer months.
“Maintaining vaginal health is important year-round, but it becomes even more crucial during the summer months as it brings specific challenges that need to be addressed head-on,” says Dr. Sophocles. “By taking proactive steps to care for your vaginal health, you can avoid any discomfort caused by imbalances or irritants, allowing you to fully enjoy the season.”
Below, Dr. Sophocles shares her best practices for maintaining vaginal health during the summer.
Increased moisture and heat: As higher temperatures and humidity levels contribute to excess sweating in the genital area, Dr. Sophocles advises integrating a feminine probiotic into your daily routine, like RepHresh Pro-B. This will help restore the natural balance of yeast and bacteria in the vagina. Additionally, it’s important to keep the genital area clean and dry by regularly changing out of wet clothes and bathing suits.
Swimming pools or beach activities: Chlorinated water in swimming pools and exposure to sand and saltwater at the beach can disrupt the natural pH balance of the vagina which can lead to itch and irritation. Dr. Sophocles recommends rinsing the vulva with clean water after swimming and using RepHresh Vaginal Gel to restore a healthy pH level and eliminate unusual odor for up to three days. Changing into dry clothing promptly is also advised.
Synthetic fabrics and tight clothing: Lightweight, synthetic fabrics like nylon or polyester, often chosen for summer attire, can trap heat and moisture, creating a breeding ground for bacteria and yeast. Instead, opt for breathable fabrics like cotton or moisture-wicking material to promote airflow to the genital area.
Dehydration: As dehydration becomes prevalent with warmer weather, vaginal health can be affected by reduced natural lubrication, causing discomfort, dryness, and an increased risk of irritation or micro-tears during sexual activity. To combat dryness, Dr. Sophocles recommends a vaginal moisturizer, such as Replens Long-Lasting Vaginal Moisturizer, as it attaches itself to dry cells to deliver continuous moisture for up to three days. It's also important to drink plenty of water throughout the day to maintain adequate vaginal moisture.
Travel-related issues: Prolonged periods of sitting during flights or road trips can lead to decreased blood circulation in the pelvic area, leading to discomfort or swelling. It's important to stretch and move around during travel to improve blood flow to the pelvic region. Staying mindful of this while traveling can help prevent potential issues.
Dr. Maria Sophocles' expert advice equips women with the knowledge and tools necessary to prioritize their vaginal health throughout the summer season. By following these guidelines, individuals can confidently embrace the joys of summer while ensuring optimal well-being.