Do you experience a constant discomfort in your vagina, and you have a sneaking suspicion that something is not right with your lady parts? It could be bacterial vaginosis (BV), a common vaginal infection. Fret not! BV is curable and here’s how you can treat it.
Bacterial vaginosis is one of the most common vaginal infections in women aged 15 to 44. Why does it occur? Douching, vaginal deodorants and scented soaps can wreak havoc with your vagina’s pH and disrupting your bacterial balance and lead to bacterial vaginosis. If you notice a fishy odour and more than usual discharge from your vagina, you may have bacterial vaginosis. Here’s how you can treat the infection.
How to treat bacterial vaginosis?
Often, bacterial vaginosis will go away by itself as your vagina restores its balance. However, if you have symptoms that are just not going away and are bothersome, consult with your doctor. First, your gynaecologist will do a pelvic exam to check the discharge, and likely will send tests to rule out sexually transmitted diseases that could potentially lead to severe consequences like a pelvic infection or infertility.
If you are diagnosed with BV, your gynaecologist or GP will advise a course of antibiotics or a cream or gel to restore the normal pH levels in your vagina. It usually takes around a week for BV to go away.
Does bacterial vaginosis make a comeback?
You had BV, got it treated, but damn, it’s back! You are not alone. Bacterial vaginosis can reoccur in 75 percent of women within seven months. The triggers could be the same as before. Your best bet to keep the condition at bay is to identify what is exactly causing it. Is it the scented soap or the naturally alkaline semen of your sexual partner? Try using a non-scented body wash, avoid douching and use a condom during intercourse.
Myths about natural ways to cure bacterial vaginosis
Do you prefer to do things au naturel? Do not follow your friend’s advice of using tea tree oil or apple cider vinegar on your vagina. Using these natural ingredients in your sensitive area can not only worsen the condition but also increase its chances of re-occurrence.
If you suffer from BV, some studies have shown that consuming probiotics can help–this includes yoghurt. Better studies are still needed, but adding probiotics to your diet is likely not to do any harm. Many women also use yoghurt on their vagina, thinking that the lactobacilli will enhance the growth of good bacteria. Studies are inconclusive at this time, therefore not recommended.
Book an appointment with one of the experts on our platform for any queries.
Also reviewed by Dr. Shailly Prasad, MD/MBA, Resident Physician, Obstetrics & Gynecology.
Disclaimer: Content on Veera is provided for informational purposes only and is not intended as medical advice, or as a substitute for medical advice given by a physician.
References: Kumar, N., Behera, B., Sagiri, S. S., Pal, K., Ray, S. S., & Roy, S. (2011). Bacterial vaginosis: Etiology and modalities of treatment-A brief note. Journal of pharmacy & bioallied sciences, 3(4), 496–503. https://doi.org/10.4103/0975-7406.90102 Faught BM, Reyes S. Characterization and Treatment of Recurrent Bacteria Vaginosis. J Womens Health (Larchmt). 2019 Sep;28(9):1218-1226. doi: 10.1089/jwh.2018.7383. Epub 2019 Aug 12. PubMed PMID: 31403349.