Boric Acid Suppositories For Vaginal Health

Boric Acid Suppositories For Vaginal Health

Boric acid suppositories may be the cost-effective alternative treatment method you need to remedy vaginal infections, including bacterial vaginosis or yeast infections. They can be prescribed by your healthcare provider as an alternative to traditional antibiotics, especially if that method doesn’t yield results. Boric acid suppositories are also available over-the-counter. This article discusses what boric acid suppositories are, what they may be able to treat, and the benefits and risks associated with them.

What Is Boric Acid?

Boric acid is a water-soluble compound that contains oxygen, boron, and hydrogen. It is a white substance that comes in crystal or powder form. According to research, boric acid exhibits anti-fungal and antibacterial properties. Diluted boric acid solutions may be used to treat skin insect bites, athlete’s foot, foot odor, diaper rash, and yeast infections. Boric acid suppositories work to promote proper acid balance in the vagina. It may relieve symptoms like itching and burning. 

Benefits Of Boric Acid Suppositories

As previously mentioned, boric acid exhibits anti-fungal and antibacterial properties. Research indicates that when used appropriately, boric acid suppositories may reduce the risk of recurrent vaginal infections. At times, they may work more effectively than traditional medications, including antifungals that are typically prescribed to treat yeast infections. A 2011 review of 14 studies found that cure rates involving the use of boric acid varied between 40% and 100%. Based on the available research, researchers concluded that boric acid is a safe alternative and affordable option to other treatments. In some cases, boric acid suppositories may be recommended for:

  • Trichomoniasis
  • Yeast infections
  • Bacterial vaginosis

Boric Acid For Yeast Infections

According to several studies, boric acid suppositories may be very effective at treating yeast infections. Researchers note that this is especially true for yeast infections that are not caused by Candida albicans, the usual suspect of yeast infections. A review of studies found that boric acid suppositories are considered safe with only mild side effects. They did a reasonable job eliminating such non-albicans infections, curing between 40% and 100% of such yeast infections. Additionally, yeast infections were no more likely to recur after boric acid treatment than after use of standard antifungal drugs. 

Boric Acid For Bacterial Vaginosis

Bacterial vaginosis occurs when there is an imbalance in vaginal flora. Unfortunately, there is little evidence for the use of boric acid suppositories to treat bacterial vaginosis. That said, small studies suggest that boric acid may be effective when used alone or as a complementary therapy. In one study, about 77% of the participants reported feeling satisfied with how their symptoms resolved; however, the average treatment time was a little over one year. 

Boric Acid For Trichomoniasis 

Trichomoniasis is a sexually transmitted infection (STI) caused by Trichomonas vaginalis. The research that is available on boric acid suppositories as a treatment option is limited to small studies. Laboratory studies have shown that boric acid can effectively inhibit the growth of trichomonas bacteria. That supports the fact that boric acid suppositories may be an appropriate treatment option for the condition. That said, trichomonas has difficulty growing in acidic environments in lab settings. People who have a higher than healthy pH balance in the vagina tend to experience this condition more frequently. For infections that are hard to treat, consider discussing boric acid suppositories with your healthcare provider. 

How To Use Boric Acid Suppositories

You always have the option of discussing the use of boric acid suppositories with your healthcare provider prior to using it as a treatment option. If you just want to try it on your own, be sure to wash your hands thoroughly. Use an applicator, or your finger, to insert one suppository into the vagina in the evening. You may want to wear a panty liner or washable period underwear in case of possible discharge. 

Typical instructions for a yeast infection is to leave in the suppository overnight, inserting a new one each night for seven days. For recurring infections, insert one suppository per evening for 14 days, then continue to use for six months to a year twice weekly. Most boric acid suppositories are available at drugstores or online. 

Side Effects

Boric acid suppositories are generally safe for adults, but minor side effects can occur. Tell your healthcare provider about other medications or supplements you take because they may or may not interact with the suppository. Don’t ever take boric acid suppositories orally and do not use them if you are pregnant or plan on becoming pregnant. The most common side effects include:

  • Burning at the insertion site
  • Vaginal irritation
  • Suppository leaking out and not fully absorbing
  • Redness in the vaginal area
  • Watery discharge
  • Harm to fetus (if pregnant)

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