by Inna Duckworth, MSc
Medical Herbalist and Naturopath, NIMH
I am pleased to be a part of the Wylde Practitioner Team.
As a qualified team of experts, we support women with their intimate health and reawaken play through natural therapies, such as movement, nutrition, herbs, supplements, testing and natural fem-care products.
I’m Inna Duckworth, MSc, naturopath, medical herbalist, holistic practitioner, specialising in female health. My first training in Herbal Medicine was focused on natural solutions for female health are a part of our national heritage. Then I proceeded to do a 4 year degree in Herbal Medicine at Middlesex University, London where I accomplished a comprehensive scientific program in the area of natural health including herbal, nutritional and functional medicine support in maintaining and regaining health. I had the privilege of supporting many women on their healing journey. In 2021-2022 I have completed a unique professional mentoring program “Holistic Vaginal Health” under the supervision of an expert (a PhD candidate) in the area of vaginal microbiome. At the moment, I am a well-trained practitioner experienced in hormonal and genito-urinary health. I have been developing my own professional product range working closely with a highly reputable manufacturer in the UK.
Empowering women being able to express themselves fully is the focus of my entire work. Sexuality and pleasure are important aspects of life. It is said that we directly experience the Divine when we are born, die and orgasm.
"Intimate discomfort sucks. It’s unbearable. It causes shame and disconnection. You deserve to feel good, to reconnect, to break down the shame, and get back to your sensual self.” – KATHIE BISHOP, FOUNDER of Into the Wylde.
When I started my work, I was smitten by the number of women (I should say beautiful souls, because your gender definition is just a part of your story) who either had less sex than they wanted or couldn’t climax and experience intimate pleasures they knew were there.
Of course, there are multiple non-physical reasons, leading to intimacy issues, they are definitely worth exploring and realigning in various ways.
However, in recent years we have learnt a lot about the symbiotic nature of humans: we carry a whole Universe of life inside of us in a form of bacteria and other beings, cumulatively called microbiome.
The next step was to find out scientifically that emotional issues including day-to-day stresses, reflect the chemistry of our bodies, that would in turn change the environment for the microbiome and may lead to unfriendly bacteria or fungi taking over and causing various symptoms in the body including intimate area.
That may inadvertently lead to becoming less engaged in expressing yourself through sexuality.
It has been found that vaginal symptoms are linked with anxiety and depression, and this is totally understandable. Being intimate is a very close encounter, if one has any vaginal symptoms, they are worried about, e.g. smell or discharge, or there is any discomfort during the chosen form of intercourse, exploring them requires further openness and maybe be overwhelming.
Here is an example of a conversation that should take place: “I really want to share my sexual pleasures with you, but I feel physical discomfort in my intimate parts. We need to reconsider how we can experience sensual pleasures together, while I'm looking for the reasons of the discomfort”.
Understandably such conversation is not easy, it might be more convenient to say, “I’m not up for it tonight”.
If such or a similar scenario is relevant to you, my belief is that one should look for the reasons of discomfort from various angles, including the status of intimate microbiome.
Professional microbiome testing is a comprehensive analysis of vaginal health, that includes the following areas: ph level, which is showing the state of the soil if you like and whether it is proinflammatory; level of inflammation, bacteria by groups, including the ones linked with endometriosis, infertility and other conditions, 4 types of Candida, which are to be treated differently, if identified as present.
One we know what is behind the symptoms you may experience, we can start working on bespoke corrective and supporting plan, focusing on creating a favourable environment for friendly bacteria, based on your community state type (there are 5 in total). For most vaginas that would be Lactobacillii dominant, but not for all.
As a result of your testing package you will get a video recording of the test interpretation and 1-2 page summary of recommendations on diet, lifestyle, hygiene, relevant supplement and other natural interventions including herbal preparations.
* If you have recently done a different vaginal microbiome test, it may be possible to use it instead,
the cost of the package will be adjusted.
Holistic approach to health works best when it is taken over a period of time, slowly revising what is not working and introducing new patterns so you can transform your health.
That is why my individual work with patients is largely based on 3 months or longer packages, that include physical and emotional aspects of wellbeing.