July 26, 2019

Science on Tap focuses on women’s genital hygiene practices

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. — Andrea L. DeMaria, an assistant professor in the new Department of Public Health of Purdue University’s College of Health and Human Sciences, spoke Thursday (July 25) on women’s genital hygiene practices and pubic hair grooming during Science on Tap at the Lafayette Brewing Company.

In her talk, titled “Your Hair Down There: Pubic Hair Tales, Trends and Trials,” DeMaria discussed ways to practice healthy genital hygiene and steps for safe pubic hair removal. Her talk was based on her findings that a woman’s grooming behavior can lead to clinical complications and that women delay receiving gynecological care due to feelings about their genitals. Her findings were published in the American Journal for Obstetrics and Gynecology. She was the first scholar to publish on this topic in an OBGYN journal. Although much of the focus of her work has been on women’s genital hygiene practices, she also discussed male practices.

DeMaria received a bachelor of arts in brain and behavioral science from Purdue in 2006. She received her master’s in kinesiology with a concentration in sport and exercise psychology from the University of North Texas in 2008 and a Ph.D. in health education with a certificate in advanced research methods from Texas A&M University in 2011. DeMaria also completed an NIH-funded postdoctoral fellowship in the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology at the University of Texas Medical Branch. She has been a professor at Purdue since August 2016 and serves as the director for the Interdisciplinary Women’s Reproductive Health Collaborative.

Science on Tap, led by graduate students Emma Lendy, Aswathy Chandran, Shruthi Suresh and Thomas Jenkins, provides Purdue faculty and collaborating researchers the opportunity to share research activities in an informal setting with presentations designed to appeal to a more general audience.

Writer: Madison Sanneman, 317-903-5642, msannema@purdue.edu

Source: Emma Lendy, elendy@purdue.edu

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