(THE SUN-UK) — From vaginal steaming to labiaplasty, some women are willing to go to extremes to attain the “perfect” vagina.
And just when you think you’ve heard it all, another bizarre DIY method emerges.
Some women now are apparently using toothpaste in an attempt to try and tighten their vaginas.
Unsurprisingly, doctors are warning them it’s a really bad idea and could do some nasty damage.
Vanessa Mackay, consultant gynecologist and spokesperson for the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists said: “It is a myth that toothpaste will tighten the vagina.
“Putting toothpaste into the vagina, or on the vulva, would not only be uncomfortable but it could also cause serious damage and disrupt the natural flora of the vagina leading to the potential for infections like bacterial vaginosis and thrush.”
Some kinds of toothpaste contain small particles that could also cause painful microabrasions to the vaginal walls.
Oluwole Yusuf, a medical doctor in Nigeria, said he had seen a “recent obsession” in women resorting to using toothpaste to tighten up down below.
He even went as far as saying that using the dental product on the vagina could leave women infertile.
Yusuf reportedly told the News Agency of Nigeria: “Toothpaste is caustic and too abrasive for a sensitive body part like the vagina and can destroy the organisms meant to protect the vagina from possible infections.
“When the vagina can no longer protect itself, the body is prone to infections which could later destroy the tubes and block the chances of getting pregnant.”
He urged women not to be “body-shamed” by their partners and to be confident in their own skin.
Instead, Yusuf said there are other exercises or practices that women can try out to slowly tighten the vagina.
“Kegel exercises and yoga exercise are part of the exercises that can make the vagina tight without engaging in harmful practices,’’ Yusuf said.
Mackay also recommends pelvic floor exercises for women who are concerned about the tightness of the vagina.
“There are various different ways in which women can carry out pelvic floor exercises but the easiest is to sit or stand comfortably with knees slightly apart and then engage and draw up the pelvic floor muscles as if trying to avoid passing urine or flatus,” she said.
“To check that the correct muscles are being exercised, women can place a finger or thumb into the vagina and squeeze the pelvic floor muscles at the same time, they should feel a gentle squeeze as the muscles contract.
“Women can build up the strength of their pelvic floor muscles by doing ten slow contractions and holding them for about 10 seconds each.
“The length of time can be increased gradually and the slow contractions can then be followed by a set of quick contractions. This process should be carried out three or four times a day.
“In some women, however, vaginal laxity may be due to pelvic organ prolapse, in which case it may be appropriate to be referred to a gynecologist for an expert opinion.”
The potentially dangerous trend comes after reports that men were rubbing toothpaste on their penises to last longer in bed.
Experts also warned that doing so could lead to severe damage and causing painful burns down below.
The trend is thought to have emerged from a series of YouTube videos and Reddit posts, which claim the bizarre method can work wonders.
In particular, one YouTuber, Jose Barber, claimed it will “crush premature ejaculation and erectile dysfunction without dangerous drugs — and you’ll last for 30 minutes longer.”
But UK consultant pharmacist James O’Loan, said: “I’d urge anyone thinking of trying this rather worrying ‘toothpaste’ technique to cease and desist — because it won’t do anything at all to combat premature ejaculation or erectile dysfunction, despite the claims being made in these videos.
“The peppermint oils and other chemicals in toothpaste, including bleaching agents, can be extremely irritating to sensitive skin.
“By putting it on your genitals you actually risk a mild burn, as well as blisters and scarring.
“And toothpaste should in no way be used as a lubricant, either.”
In the summer, women were warned of the dangers of putting popsicles in their vaginas to cool down.
Doctors said it could cause infections, irritation and potential trauma down below. Much like when you put ice on your tongue, a popsicle could cause serious damage to the lining of the vagina too.