Bacterial vaginosis is an infection of the vagina caused by overgrowth of a certain type bacteria. This infection is normally a mild problem which mostly goes away on its own in a few days. However, sometimes it can lead to some more serious problems. It is not a sexually transmitted infection, but it can increase risk of getting one. The risk increases by having new or multiple sex partners and also by douching. In this post, we will take a look at the causes, signs and symptoms and also at the best home remedies for bacterial vaginosis. We will also learn how we can prevent it.
What Causes Bacterial Vaginosis?
There are many types of bacteria found in vagina. Some of them are good and some of them are bad. Good types of bacteria prevents growth of bad bacterias in huge amounts. But sometimes, this balance gets upset and bad type of bacteria grows in large amounts causing infection in the vagina. Experts are not sure that what causes imbalance of bacteria in the vagina but women who have multiple sex partners are more likely to get a BV infection. Bacterial vaginosis is more common in women who are sexually active, but it can also occur in women who do not have sex at all.
BV is not considered an STD, but having BV can increase chances of getting STDs (especially urinary tract infection, vaginal yeast infection and trichomoniasis). You cannot get BV from swimming pool or toilet seats.
Other causes are:
- Overuse of antibiotics
- Cigarette smoking
Signs and symptoms:
Most of the women who suffer from bacterial vaginosis do not have any symptoms. But bacterial vaginosis can cause;
- Excessive vaginal discharge of off-white/yellow color (especially after sexual intercourse).
- A “fishy” odor, which may get worse after sex.
- Vaginal discharge does not cause irritation or pain, but mild itching can sometimes occur.
Bacterial vaginosis is more common in women who are sexually active. Women with BV have much higher risk of getting sexually transmitted diseases including HIV. Risk increases when a person engages in sex with new or multiple sex partners. Douching also increases risk of getting an STD.
How to Prevent Bacterial Vaginosis Infection?
You can prevent bacterial vaginosis infection from growing by:
- Limiting the number of sex partners
- Avoiding douching
- Avoiding cigarette smoking
- Avoiding overuse of antibiotics
Home Remedies For Bacterial Vaginosis
Heads up! If you are already using antibiotics to treat your vaginal infection or another infection, consult your physician first before trying home remedies. They might interfere with the antibiotics.
1. Apple Cider Vinegar
Apple cider vinger is one of nature’s strongest antibiotics. ACV helps you get rid of bacterial vaginosis by killing bad bacteria and reproducing good bacteria and hence restoring the balance.
How to use apple cider vinegar for bacterial vaginosis
- Prepare a hot bath by adding 2 cups of ACV to the water.
- Soak your body in the bath for about 20-30 minutes.
- Repeat this once everyday until you completely get rid of BV.
2. Tree Tea Oil
Tree tea oil is another home remedy for BV. It also helps getting rid of the unpleasant odor often common with BV.
How to use tea tree oil for bv
- Mix two tablespoons of warm water with one drop of tea tree oil and clean your vagina with it.
- Another option is to prepare a hot bath by adding three tree tea oil drops and three cups of ACV in warm water and sit in it for 30 minutes.
If you like to have a remedy readily available, you could opt for these vaginal suppositories with tea tree oil. These are safe & natural, made of hardened oil which will melt once inside. You can check user reviews and the latest price on Amazon.
Milk is another excellent home remedy for bacterial vaginosis. It also helps improve your immune system.
Using milk for bacterial infections
- Mix one teaspoon of turmeric powder (which is also great for knee pain!) in a glass of warm milk and drink it once daily.
- Another option is to dip a tampon in chilled milk and place it in your vagina. Keep the tampon in for 1 to 2 hours. Do this once everyday until your condition is improved.
4. Coconut Oil
Coconut oil is another natural antibiotic that can help treat bacterial vaginosis.
How to use coconut oil for BV
- Apply coconut oil on the walls of the vagina. Do this daily until symptoms are improved.
Actually, I’m such a fan of coconut oil, I just have to share this awesome video by the lovely Dr. Axe on the Benefits of Coconut Oil. Enjoy!
And if you don’t have coconut oil in the house, and want to get great quality for a good price, have Amazon deliver Nature’s Way Organic Extra Virgin Coconut Oil delivered right at your door.
Garlic has also antibacterial properties which can kill bad bacteria.
How to use garlic to cure a bacterial infection
- Crush three to four garlic cloves. Put the mashed garlic on the affected area. After 20 minutes, clean the area with warm water.
6. Tea bags
Tea bags can also be used to treat bacterial vaginosis.
Using tea for your BV
- Dip a tea bag in warm water for ten to fifteen minutes. Then put it in refrigerator for a few minutes.
- Apply it externally on affected areas. Do this regularly for a few weeks.
Fenugreek is an excellent home remedy for bacterial vaginosis. It helps in restoring balance of bacteria in the body and it also strengthens the immune system.
How to use Fenugreek to cure a bacterial infection
- Dip 2 tablespoons of fenugreek seeds in a glass of water for the whole night. Drink this water empty stomach in the morning.
- Or mix one teaspoon of fenugreek powder in a cup of yogurt and eat it two times everyday.
If nothing else works: Hydrogen Peroxide or Boric Acid.
Hydrogen peroxide is used as a home remedy for ages. It helps eliminate bad bacteria from your body. Boric Acid has been reported to be very effective for BV as well. However, I prefer less harsh methods, and would always try the more natural remedies first.
Ninja tip: Improve your overall vaginal health…
So hopefully you found a cure to get rid of your BV. But as a lot of diseases are signals to improve your health overall, you might want to look a little further than just treating the vaginosis.
Probiotics for vaginal health
As I mentioned before, you want to get rid of the bad bacteria and keep the good bacteria. Using the right probiotics, is a way to do just that. You might have other vaginal problems (like candida) and not be aware of them.
Using probiotics can help re-establishing a healthy balance, and solve health problems before they hinder you in your daily life.
I love the probiotic, prebiotic and cranberry combination of VH Essentials, check out other raving reviews on Amazon here.
Hopefully you will never need these remedies. But if you do, they might prevent a lot of unpleasant symptoms. Bacterial Vaginosis is more common than you think, and not discussed often enough with women. So make sure you share this information with your loved ones, it might help them immensely!