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  • Writer's pictureLouise Bentley

Ever thought about steaming? - it’s not what you think!

So it’s probably something you’ve not heard of before, or if you have, you’ve had a chuckle and thought ‘ugh that's weird’. Yoni steaming. V steam. Vaginal steaming. Yep, that’s what it is, sitting your nether region over a gently steaming pot of water with medicinal herbs to help heal reproductive system ailments. It’s kind of like when you have a head cold, and you pop your face over a bowl with boiling water and vicks vaporub in it, cover yourself with a towel and breathe in. DISCLAIMER - please don't use vicks vaporub to steam your yoni!!

For the sake of inclusiveness, I’d like to point out I am aware that there are people who identify as male who have vaginas, and who identify as women who don't, however I will be referring to ancient women as women, and I really don’t mean to cause any offence.

Ooh maybe I should offer up a definition here YONI - sanskrit for vulva, a symbol of divine procreation and the source of all life. Sounds amazing doesn't it?

Yet I can guarantee that a lot of people reading this have already closed the page, or at least thought eww that's weird. We don’t honour our yoni enough anymore. Ancient women viewed it as magical and powerful, sacred and special. Imagine ages ago, women would get together in powerful circles, celebrating their cycles, the moon, and just the fact that they are strong beings. Then the men caught on, got scared of the women’s power and cried Witchcraft! - but that's a story for a whole other day (she says tucking her wand back into her cloak!)

Modern medical advice says that steaming is, at best, not necessary, and at worst dangerous! The only information I could find about the dangers of it was ‘you might burn yourself’..... I mean, you might burn yourself cooking dinner, maybe we should all stop doing that! If it's too hot or uncomfortable, stand up away from the steam. I do sometimes wonder how stupid some folks think we are. It does feel like the patriarchy are going ‘no, silly women wouldnt know if their arses were on fire, they mustn't be able to control their vulvas’

Having read this, it may sound like I’m totally anti men - I’m absolutely not. I love men, I’ve married an amazing one, and raised an even more amazing one. I just know that historically women have had to sacrifice a lot of themselves to fit in with them. So come on vulva owning folks, let's honour our yonis, be proud of them and love them. It might end up having unexpected effects on us!

Benefits of steaming -

Keeps your cycle healthy. Yes we all know that the vagina is self cleaning. But sometimes, as with many different parts of our body, it doesn't work as well as it should. Stress, environmental factors, diet etc etc all play a part in our body running at optimum levels.

An ‘unhealthy’ cycle can manifest itself as - painful crampy period, shorter or longer cycles than average. Dark, stodgy, brown blood rather than bright red.

It can help to increase fertility - a healthy cycle generally means a fertile cycle.

It can help eliminate fibroids and cysts.

It can help with menopausal symptoms such as vaginal dryness, increasing lubrication and libido - I mean, who doesn't want that??

It can assist in postpartum recovery, helping the body to discard the lochia after giving birth.

It's also a really lovely thing to do - embrace the goddess within, spend time on yourself, pop a face pack on, meditate, slow down and just be.

There are a few contraindications -

DO NOT STEAM WHEN YOU’RE PREGNANT OR EVEN THINK YOU ARE. If you’re actively trying to be pregnant, do not steam after ovulation/the 2 weeks before your period is due. Steaming may open the cervix - not what you want during early pregnancy.

DO NOT STEAM DURING MENSTRUATION. Steam may increase blood flow, its not needed during menstruation.

DO NOT STEAM WHEN USING CERTAIN CONTRACEPTIVE METHODS - Methods such as tubal cauterisation, endometrial ablation, hormonal patch birth control. Please use a secondary method alongside these if you intend to steam.

So, what do you think? Is it something you’d like to try? Need more info? Do pop me a message if you want to chat about it more, I’m more than happy to discuss your yoni!

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