Personal Hygiene

BOYS

Boys need to clean their penis by starting at the head of the penis. If one is uncircumcised, they would still need to pull back the foreskin as far as it is possible without causing any discomfort. The pulled foreskin will expose both the glans which needs to be gently cleaned with lukewarm water. Ensure cleanliness of the glans and the inner side of the foreskin as a white substance called smegma gets formed here. Smegma consists of dead skin cells, oils, body fluids and bacteria. The presence of this substance can cause infections and foul smell. Circumcised men too need to maintain hygiene as the absence of foreskin can cause the penis head to come in direct contact with sweat and bacteria.

 

GIRLS

Girls needs to clean their outer genital areas. Cleaning of genitals needs to be done so as to prevent yeast infections as well as bad odours.  Do not go overboard with washing by vigorous flushing of the vagina or douching with scented liquids as it affects the pH balance of the vagina and can make you prone to infections such as Bacterial vaginosis. Girls should never douche (i.e. flush water or bethadine up the vagina) in order to clear vaginal discharge. Douching removes  the healthy bacteria that are necessary to maintain the right pH in the vagina, as well as prevent infections.  Douching also pre-disposes females to more infections such as Bacterial vaginosis.

When on their menstrual cycle (period), tampons and sanitary pads should be changed after every three to six hours depending on the menstrual flow. Keeping them for a long time may let bacteria thrive causing bad odour and infections.

Sweaty clothes and underwear after a workout should be changed quickly. This poses a risk for you as bacteria and yeast flourish in sweat and a urinary tract infection or yeast infection is not far. Sweat and dust can block your skin pores around your private area and cause folliculitus, which are inflamed and infected hair follicles.

Never hold on to the urge of going to the washroom to urinate. Urinating makes your bladder get rid of bacteria and toxins that thrive in the urinary tract. Delaying urination speeds up breeding of bacteria which leads to infections.

Do not wear tight underwear or tight fitting jeans for a long time as they trap sweat and help proliferation of bacteria. Prefer natural fabrics such as cotton instead of synthetics for your innerwear.