Female Soldier Health
One of the most important things for a female servicemember to know is how to properly maintain her personal hygiene. Due to travel inconveniences and lack of latrines, they face situations that can compromise hygiene rituals. Besides washing your genital area daily, there are other preventive measures you should perform.
These tips will help you on or off duty:
- Drink a lot of fluids (especially water) and urinate frequently to help prevent infections such as urinary tract infections.
- Do not hold in your urine or dehydrate yourself – just grab a buddy when you’re in the field to watch out for your privacy!
- Dry yourself thoroughly after bathing.
- Stay away from perfumed soaps or feminine deodorants or use them only when needed. These products can cause irritation and they attract bugs.
- Wear cotton panties, or at least panties with cotton crotch linings. They are more absorbent and allow the skin to dry and breathe.
- Use feminine cleansing cloths or baby wipes (squeeze out excess moisture beforehand) and pat dry with toilet paper. This helps when you don’t have immediate access to showers.
- Do not leave tampons or pads on too long. Change them at regular intervals or you’re putting yourself at a higher risk for odor and infection.
- Always wipe yourself from front to back.
- Don’t share a towel with anyone.
- Wash your hands regularly and clean your nails whenever they are dirty.
- Always use flip flops in the shower.
- Use baby powder to freshen up your feet, underarms, and under your breasts.
- Drink plenty of cranberry juice or take the capsules.
- Eat yogurt with probiotics.
- Avoid alcohol and smoking.
- Always use protection during sexual activity!