5 Home Remedies For Bacterial Vaginosis
Bacterial vaginosis (BV) is acknowledged as one of the most common infections of vagina. In America, 1 in every 4 women has bacterial vaginosis with or without any prominent symptoms. The characteristic symptom of BV is fishy foul odor that comes from the vagina. Other symptoms may range from itching and burning to grayish discharge. Antibiotics can help treat BV cases but recurrence may as well occur. Women usually prefer home remedies to get hold of BV.
Seeking Medical Help
Consulting a doctor is usually a good idea as the doctor can identify the underlying cause behind BV. If a woman speculates she has BV, she should definitely seek medical assistance in the following cases:
- Pregnancy: BV is associated to low birth weight, miscarriage, preterm labor and other such complications
- Upon experiencing intense pain, a burning sensation while urinating and discharge of blood.
- Having a previous history of yeast infection
Sex can also serve as the medium for the spread of BV. Women who have been diagnosed with BV should avoid having sex or should use a condom for safe sex until the infection goes away. Sexual activities that disturb the natural bacterial flora in the vagina can also serve as a contributing factor. Given below are some safe practices to minimize the risk:
- Avoiding the anal to vaginal transition during sex, as it can lead to the transference of fecal material into the vagina leading to BV.
- Using a condom can prevent the already existing foul odor from worsening as the semen mixes with vaginal fluid.
- Rinsing the vulva and vagina with water after urinating. It is a good habit to urinate after sex.
Because of the foul odor, women mistake BV with poor hygiene and begin using products like perfumes, soap and douches that in turn change the pH of vagina. Vagina does not require any external cleaning as it clean itself therefore the use of such products should be avoided by all means. Wearing cotton underwear is a good hygiene practice for the vagina.
Use Of Probiotics
Probiotics help maintaining the normal bacterial flora by fighting off the unhealthy fungi and bacteria. Some natural probiotics include: several cottage cheeses, fermented foods and yogurt. Cooling probiotics tampons may also help in case of BV. For this purpose, yogurt can be frozen in the tampon applicator which may then be inserted into the vagina.
Given below are some alternative remedies that may help in fighting BV:
- Apple cider vinegar: It balances the pH of vagina. Adding 2tbsp of apple cider vinegar into 1 cup of water and rinsing vulva with it can help relieve the symptoms.
- Honey: It possesses anti-microbial characteristics and boosts the effect of apple cider vinegar.
- Garlic: It also has antibacterial properties. It should only be taken in the diet; inserting garlic into the vagina can burn the skin.
- Tea tree oil: Application of tea tree oil helps alleviate the symptoms of BV.
- Boric acid: Boric acid can fight BV as it also has antibacterial properties.
It is highly recommended to speak to a healthcare professional if your symptoms doesn’t respond to simple remedies.
1. Bilardi, J., Walker, S., McNair, R., Mooney-Somers, J., Temple-Smith, M., Bellhouse, C., … & Bradshaw, C. (2016). Women’s management of recurrent bacterial vaginosis and experiences of clinical care: A qualitative study. PloS one, 11(3), e0151794.