If de facto trend-barometer American Apparel is any indication, the bush is, indeed, back. That's excellent news for American genitals. Analyses of American emergency room data indicate genital injuries related to pubic grooming had increased nearly sixfold between 2002 and 2010. Things were getting out of hand.
Top photo by dullhunk via flickr
Americans, it seemed, could not be trusted with their privates. Researchers led by UC San Francisco urologist Benjamin Breyer described the unmitigated rise in injuries related to pubic grooming in a December 2012 issue of the journal Urology:
The number of incidents increased approximately linearly during the study period, with more than one-third of actual injuries occurring in 2009–2010. The estimated increase was 274 cases annually (95% CI 110–384, P = .001). Although the number of incidents was similar for both sexes during each year, an estimated 1765 (95% CI 717–2813; actual 49) female injuries occurred in 2010. This represents a nearly sixfold increase, or an increase of 346 cases annually (95% CI 149–544, P = .001) since 2002.
The study went on to conclude that those members of the U.S. population at greatest risk of injury were women, aged 19 to 28. Indeed, the researchers note that "the demographics of patients with GU injuries [Ed. Note: See the chart for injuries by age and gender categories here] from grooming products largely parallel observations about cultural changes and grooming practices in the United States." Interestingly, the 19-28 age range cited by Breyer and his team as "most susceptible" happens to overlap rather cleanly with American Apparel's target market of 20 to 35-year-olds. Could pube-grooming's fall from grace really start right at the tippy top of the fashionable cool-kid pile?
Breyer and his colleagues ultimately advise urologists, ED and urgent care providers to consider advising patients on safe depilatory techniques. "For example," the researchers write, "hair clippers might be a superior tool [to non electric razors], because they accomplish hair removal in a quick and economic fashion but pose less risk of microscopic lacerations or abrasions to the skin."
Or you could hop on this new, natural trend and abstain from pubic grooming altogether. After all, the only way to avoid cutting your genitals with a razor is to avoid introducing the two in the first place! Though here's a downside: There is evidence that suggests a return of natural pubic hair could lead to an increased incidence of pubic lice. You can't win them all, people.
[Via New Republic]