Why Do Vaginas Itch? How To Prevent Yeast Infections and UTIs This Summer

It's hard being a woman, and don't let any men's rights groups out there tell you any differently. It's hot as hell — and yet the less clothes we wear to stay cool, the more unwanted attention comes our way. If that's not enough to get your feminist panties in a twist, then this will: We all know our vaginas have a mind of their own. Vaginas are like cars; you keep up with daily maintenance and reap all the benefits of having one until suddenly, through no real fault of your own, something goes awry. Suddenly, it's not running properly and you've got a big problem on your hands. The heat can make you dehydrated, which can cause UTI's; and an excess of moisture in your vaginal region can cause candida — the yeast infection culprit — to grow. 

How many times have you had a hot date night with your boo only to be plagued with a bad yeast infection days later? What about a passionate night of sex that was so heated, you instantly passed out in a delightful haze, only to wake up with a violently painful urinary tract infection? Now that's just being punished for having a good time — and I am not about that life. 

Luckily, there are definitely natural remedies that can hook your vagina up and get you feeling fully equipped for your next romp or day on the beach. Preventative measures this summer are definitely in order, because the humidity is nothing but trouble for your vaginal health. Here are some natural and easy ways you can take to stay on your vagina's good side this summer.

Wash with Baking Soda

Some sources will tell you not to use baking soda when you have a yeast infection or UTI, but I know plenty of women, myself included, that have seen only pleasant results. Baking soda balances your Ph level; it's highly alkaline, which is great for the vagina (which tends to keep a high acidity level). Washing with heavily-scented soaps can throw off the pH level that is necessary for a healthy, happy vagina, so remember to avoid those — and douching — at all costs. 

Drink Coconut Milk

Coconut milk has high antimicrobial properties that have been found to relieve and (some say) even cure sexually transmitted diseases in women. A natural remedy for yeast infections, introducing coconut milk into your daily routine can improve your vaginal health in general. You may already know that coconut is rich in electrolytes and potassium, but when you factor in that both those elements are going to give you that energy boost you're missing during your period — there is no denying coconut will be your ultimate vagina jam. 

Stay Dry and Wear Loose-Fitting Clothes

Next time you step out of the shower and hurry into a pair of tight-fitting undies or decide to keep your wet bathing suit on longer than necessary, consider the fact that moisture in the vaginal region increases yeast infections. On your next visit to the beach, make sure you bring a change of clothes and a towel to avoid getting a pesky infection that will have you itching for days. If you aren't swimming, use this as a chance to wear loose fitting bottoms that won't trap in moisture, giving you some extra breathing room. Sleeping naked is a great way to let things breathe during the summer as well. 

Drink Plenty of Water

You knew this one was coming. Drinking water is the easiest way to prevent a bacterial infection that can spiral into an agonizing urinary tract infection. Loading up on beer or other yeasty ingredients like bread and sugar will up your chances of getting an irritating yeast infection, so you should be mindful of drinking those as well. Alcohol can easily become your vaginal nemesis this summer if you don't double up on your H20 when you're boozin'.  

Resist the Urge to Fall Asleep After Sex

Snuggling up fresh after a romp and dozing off is definitely an ideal scenario — in theory. But if you can tear yourself out of your partner's arms for just a moment, you will decrease your chances of a urinary tract infection. Don't need to throw him or her off of you right away — just try to pee within 10 minutes. (Extra points for peeing before sex too!) 

Good luck, and remember: Your vagina need not be your enemy. She's on your side. 

Image: Nicole PierceFrederic Poirot Alex DramKatTom Woodwardgeorge.bremer/Flickr

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