A vaginal steam (often referred to as a V-Steam) is an effective and relaxing way to promote reproductive health. The V-Steams are ph balanced to help the body naturally cleanse the vaginal and uterine linings in a safe and gentle way. The warm steam and natural essential oils from the plants nourish and tonify the vaginal and uterine tissues. While improving circulation, the steams alleviate symptoms caused by, or related to, congestion in these tissues.
V-Steams can be a perfect way to show yourself some self-care and can have beneficial effects. However, if you are trying to enhance fertility, improve sexual health, balance hormones, or regulate your menstrual cycle, we would recommend visiting a member of our acupuncture team or scheduling a virtual consultation as they will be able to create a tailored treatment plan geared towards your specific health goals.
Herbs and Plants*
Dry or fresh plants are suggested. Also, if possible, use organic plants. Many plants you find on your spice rack are perfect. Most commonly used are
- basil (move fluids)
- rosemary (anti-bacterial, anti-fungal, anti-microbial)
- oregano (antiseptic, antispasmodic, expectorant)
- calendula (anti-inflammatory)
- motherwort (tonifies, cramping, infections)
- mugwort (all purpose)
- marigolds (anti-inflammatory)
Directions for your DIY V-Steam
- In a medium covered pot, pour 8 cups of water (preferably purified water).
- Place one handful of fresh herb(s) or 1/4 cup dried into the water. Do not add or use “essential oils” as they are too strong and may burn sensitive genital tissue.
- Bring water to a soft boil for 5 minutes.
- Turn of the heat, leave the lid on, and steep for another 5 minutes with the lid on.
- It is very important to test the temperature of the steam before using it. If it is too hot wait 15 seconds and test it again until it feels comfortably warm to steam with.
- Pour 4 cups (half) of water into the bowl you have placed in your toilet.
- Wave your hand 8-10 inches over the herbal water to make sure it is not too hot.
- Remove your underwear and sit on the seat above the steaming water.
- Drape a large blanket or sheet around your waist down to the floor making sure no steam escapes.
- Make sure you keep yourself warm, keeping something on your feet (socks, slippers) and neck. You do not want any cold to get into your body while you are trying to warm it.
- You should feel a warm, rolling heat for about 10-12 minutes.
- When the steam dies down dump the water into the toilet. Starting with step #4 begin the second dosage. If it has cooled too much reheat but test again before sitting over the steam.
Please note: this can temporarily increase menstrual flow with more dark fluids or debris. Menses may start earlier than usual due to the cleansing effect.
For advice on which herbs to use, it’s best to schedule a consultation, either in-clinic or virtually, with a Yinova practitioner beforehand.
Benefits of a V-Steam Include:
- Clears dark menstrual blood from the beginning or end of the cycle
- Dysmenorrhea (painful periods aka cramping)
- Irregular periods
- Stop and start periods
- Vaginal disorders
- Yeast infections and other vaginal bacteria
- Support for Cervical Dysplasia
- Vaginal dryness and painful intercourse
- Increases cervical fluids
- Helps relax the vaginal canal and cervix
- Nourishes and tonifies the uterine lining
Please avoid V-Steams if
- You are pregnant
- After ovulation (if attempts have been made to conceive)
- If you are bleeding heavily
- During the full flow of the period
- If you have an acute infection
- And/or you have vaginal sores or blisters.
Here at the Yinova Center you can schedule a V-Steam with a trained and experienced therapist. However you can also steam at home, but consult an MD, herbalist, or certified abdominal massage practitioner when combining herbs (do not use essential oils, since quality is hard to regulate, few are pure, and they’re too concentrated and strong for internal use).