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Bacterial Vaginosis



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What Is Bacterial Vaginosis

Bacterial Vaginosis, also known as Vaginal Bacteriosis, is a common vaginal infection for women in during their reproductive years, although women of any age can develop this condition.  It is quite rare for a woman to develop Bacterial Vaginosis if she has never had sexual intercourse, because it frequently develops after sexual intercourse with a new partner. A woman with Bacterial Vaginosis can address the issue with natural remedies, but it is recommended to discuss the symptoms with a medical professional, as the infection can upset the natural balance of bacteria in the vagina. 

Signs Of Bacterial Vaginosis

Symptoms of Bacterial Vaginosis, should they appear, can include itching or a gray watery discharge that has a foul smell.  If left unaddressed, Bacterial Vaginosis can lead to more serious complications.  The common symptoms are as follows:

  • Thin, gray, white, or green vaginal discharge
  • Vaginal itching
  • Burning during urination
  • Foul-smelling "fishy" vaginal odor
What Causes Bacterial Vaginosis

Bacterial Vaginosis is caused by the imbalance of naturally occurring bacterial flora (e.g. the overgrowth of one of several bacteria found in the vagina.  It differs from candidiasis, a yeast infection, or thrichomoniasis (trich) because those are not caused by bacteria.  Ideally, the good bacteria (lactobacilli) in the vagina outnumber the bad bacteria (anaerobes), but an overabundance of anaerobic bacteria upset the balanced microorganisms in the vagina, leading to the development of Bacterial Vaginosis.  Some risk factors that lead to the development include:

  • Excessive douching
  • Having a new sexual partner
  • Having multiple sexual partners
  • Using vaginal deodorants
  • Washing underwear with strong detergents

Dherbs Approach...adjusting your diet is always key!

Natural Remedies
  • Probiotics can be beneficial for women with Bacterial Vaginosis because probiotics assist the body with growing healthy bacteria.  Increasing the amount of healthy bacteria in the body can help fight fungi or bad bacteria, which causes Bacterial Vaginosis.  Great sources of probiotics include fermented foods, kombucha, kefir, sauerkraut, or miso. 
  • Try an apple cider vinegar rinse to help raise pH levels in the vagina.  Mix two tablespoons of raw unfiltered apple cider vinegar with one cup of filtered water and rinse the vulva with this solution twice a day to help alleviate symptoms.  You can also add a tablespoon of organic raw honey to boost the antimicrobial properties. 
  • The antibacterial and antifungal properties of tea tree oil make it an excellent natural remedy to help reduce symptoms of Bacterial Vaginosis.  Tea tree oil is not intended for direct skin contact because it is quite powerful; rather, it should be mixed with a carrier oil before application.  Since people can be allergic to tea tree oil, it is always recommended to do a small batch test on the forearm.  Mix 5-10 drops of of tea tree oil in one ounce of coconut or olive oil and rub it on your forearm.  You can soak a tampon in this oil mixture and insert it into the vagina, removing it after an hour.  Remove it sooner is there is any irritation.  You can do this several times a day, but do not sleep with the diluted tea tree tampon in place.
  • Don't douche because douching is a risk factor for developing vaginal infections.  The reason for this is because douching can disrupt the natural bacterial balance of the vagina.  Douching won't get rid of an infection; rather, it can worse the infection by removing healthy bacteria that are attempting to protect the vagina. 
  • Use safe hygiene practices because Bacterial Vaginosis can cause foul odors.  Women often mistakenly believe that the condition is caused by poor hygiene, but this is not true.  The vagina is a self-cleaning organ, and the use of douches, soaps, or perfumes can alter the pH balance, increasing the likelihood of Bacterial Vaginosis.  Avoid scented products on the vagina, including soaps and tampons, and only wash the vagina with water.  Avoid sitting in wet swimwear or underwear and keep the vagina dry whenever possible.  And always wear breathable cotton underwear. 
  • Boric acid capsules have been known to help remedy Bacterial Vaginosis, according to UWHealth.  Boric acid capsules can be safely inserted into the vagina every night for two weeks to help improve the condition.  Boric acid is not edible, in fact it is toxic to eat, but certain medical approaches, as we just detailed, are safe treatment options. 
Things you should eat
  • Kimchi
  • Kombucha
  • Sauerkraut
  • Apples
  • Avocados
  • Leafy Greens (spinach, collards, kale, and chard)
  • Cranberries
  • Sweet Potatoes
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