Doctors have warned women not to use lemons when cleaning their vagina.
According to reports, some women have been turning to the citrus fruit as part of an online trend.
However, it’s claimed that medics have indicated the practice can present a range of health issues.
Should you use a lemon for cleaning your vagina?
Not according to Dr Shirin Lakhani.
Reports say that some adherents to the lemon tactic believe lemons can help with odour problems and can even act as a contraceptive.
However, lemons can apparently actually cause thrush and even damage the vagina.
Furthermore, gynaecologists suggest vaginal hygiene is best maintained with warm water and a soft towel.
What has a health expert said?
Cosmetic Doctor with a focus on intimate health, Dr Shirin Lakhani, of Elite Aesthetics told ED!: “I can’t emphasise enough the fact that women should definitely not wash their vaginas with lemons or lemon juice for so many reasons.
“There are many myths surrounding the benefits of washing the vagina with lemons, all of which are false. It can not help you to avoid pregnancy or rid the vagina of sperm after sex. The only way to prevent pregnancy and STIs is by using contraception such as a condom.
“As a citrus fruit lemon juice is highly acidic, this acid can damage the delicate lining of the vagina as well as alter the natural pH levels which maintain bacteria to keep the area healthy.
“Washing the vagina and intimate areas can result in pain and irritation and result in infections such as thrush and bacterial vaginosis.
“Anyone wishing to wash their vagina should avoid all products, fragrances and natural juices such as lemon or cider vinegar, and wash it in warm water.
“Anything else that contains fragrances, detergents and acids can affect the natural pH level and this is there for a reason – to protect the vagina – hence it’s vital we don’t do anything to alter that healthy bacteria.”
What else do the NHS advise against?
Meanwhile, medical experts spoke to The Sun to warn people off from using lime juice, apple cider and yoghurt.
But advice on the NHS website also suggests avoiding perfumed soaps, gels, douches and antiseptics, too.
It says women should use plain, unperfumed soaps to wash the vaginal area gently every day.
Dr Suzy Elneil of University College Hospital, London, indicated there are no shortcuts when it comes to vaginal health.
She said: “Generally, good vaginal health is maintained by making sure you’re in good general health. This includes a healthy diet and exercise.
“Normal exercise helps maintain good vaginal function, as walking and running helps the pelvic floor to tone up and ensure good general health.”
Dr Elneil also made reassurances about perceptions surrounding odour.
She continued: “Vaginal odour can change at different times of the reproductive cycle and shouldn’t always be thought of as being a sign of infection or illness.”
For more advice on cleaning your vagina, click here.
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