This is how you should take care of your vagina during the hot summer, according to an expert

You probably shouldn’t sit around in your wet bottoms, like ever. But alas, it happens. Taking care of your vagina is definitely an important aspect to summer time up-keep, especially since sweat, tight fitted clothing, and bathing suits all play a role in maintaining a healthy body. Yeast infections, irritation, itchiness, and disrupting PH levels can all be common issues during the hot summer months—and you don’t want to have to deal with any of that on your beach vacation.

This may all sound a little scary, but don’t worry, we’ve got you covered.

HelloGiggles spoke with Jennifer Wider, M.D., a women’s health expert, author, and radio host, who told us everything we need to know about how to take care of our lady parts.

Here are a few tips to make sure your vagina’s health is in tip-top shape in order to avoid any annoying infections or irritants.

1 Change out of any damp clothes

I know it can be a difficult task, but hanging out in your bathing suit all day is not beneficial for your body, especially your vagina. The bottom half of your bathing suit is the perfect place for bacteria to grow. If you sit around in your wet bottoms for hours, UTIs and yeast can build up.

"Yeast tends to grow and thrive in warm, moist conditions, so it is really important to take precautions, especially in the summer months," Dr. Wider tells HG. "Change into a dry suit or back into your clothes when you're done."

2 Stay away from tight clothing

Your vagina is going to sweat. Let’s be honest, it happens to all of us. And while vaginas sweat all-year-round, the summer months are when you need to give yourself a little bit of extra TLC. If you’re wearing tight shorts or super tights jeans, your vagina cannot and will not be able to breathe. No matter what time of the year it is, breathable clothing is always the most healthy choice for your lower half. Investing in cotton underwear, dresses, and pants will not only feel cooler and refreshing, but will give your vagina the chance to air out instead of harboring all of that bacteria.

3 Don’t use harsh detergents or perfumes

Your vagina is self-cleaning. We repeat, your vagina cleans itself! What does this mean? Stay far, far away from harsh cleaning detergents, soaps, and perfumes, which can affect your pH balance. Vaginal discharge is the result of cleaning your body. Scented soaps and synthetic cleansers can dry you out and affect your already healthy vagina, while douching can flush all of the good bacteria out. Your best bet is to simply use warm water to keep your lower region nice and fresh.

4 Sleep naked

As if you need another reason to go commando, summer is the best season to practice this healthy sleep attire. When your vagina has been hot and sweaty all day long, letting it breathe at night is a sure way to air things out and prevent any unwanted irritation.

"Women should avoid synthetic underwear made from textiles including nylon, and opt instead for breathable 100% cotton undergarments," advises Dr. Wider.

Synthetic materials aren’t great for our vaginas, so make sure to take them off when falling sleeping. (Team commando!)

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