Despite Trump and his right-wing goons insisting women’s health isn’t really important and is some mysterious inferior subset of Health At Large, vaginal health is of the utmost importance to your physical and mental wellbeing and must be given equal (if not more!) hygienic attention as the rest of your body.
And yet who of us here could’ve guessed that one of the main perpetrators of vaginal harm is not the current Republican regime, but is in fact…toilet paper. WHO? KNEW?
Although one would hope you’re an expert on using toilet paper by now, professionals say there are several TP-related injuries to look out for after leaving the bathroom— And ways to prevent them.
Apologies in advance for the mental image, but apparently wiping roughly or using coarse toilet paper— the kind of cheapy stuff you’ll find in restaurants, public restrooms, and most offices (triple-ply at work is a benefit!) is the equivalent of rubbing sandpaper on your vagina. This harshness can cause hundreds of little microscopic cuts which irritate the skin and cause puffiness and swelling.
It gets worse! Unless you immediately take care of the situation, your situation might become a breeding ground for microorganisms and infections.
2. Puffiness & Swelling
It gets worse! Buying super soft toilet paper could come with its own set of unique issues. Avoid toilet paper infused with fragrances or bleach, (yes, bleach!) lotions, softeners, or any other additives, as the delicate skin on the vulva will only suffer from additional chemicals.
OB-GYN Antonio Pizzaro says the move here is “to dab gently — not wipe — and to use only unscented white toilet paper after urinating.” Also, always follow the front-to-back rule when it comes to wiping. Firmly, so you get all ~the stuff~, but not so hard you’re causing your vagina to painfully swell.
Any woman who has ever suffered through one knows a UTI is an exclusive type of hell. Since the urethra is a relatively short tube, its not difficult for bacteria that doesn’t belong there to get in there. Variating between anal and vaginal play is a leading cause of these infections, but unless you are wiping front to back every single time you could be making it really easier for this nasty bacteria to travel to your bladder and make you pee fire for a week.
4. Yeast Infections
Those same additives that may be causing your vagina to swell could also be responsible for your yeast infections. Often, chemicals will disrupt this organ’s balanced PH system, causing yeast cells to multiply and resulting in severe itching and irritation.
If you’ve recently found yourself leaving the bathroom sore, itchy, or pained in any way, check out your TP and make sure it is hypoallergenic. If problems persist, go see your OB-GYN as soon as possible.