Bacterial vaginosis is a condition in which there are more unhealthy bacteria growing, than healthy bacteria, in the vagina.
No one knows what exactly causes bacterial vaginosis. However, it affects females of all ages.
Symptoms of bacterial vaginosis include; burning sensation when you urinate, itching inside and around the vagina, and whitish or gray vaginal discharge that smells like fish.
Factors that could trigger bacterial vaginosis include; having multiple sexual partners, douching the vagina, smoking cigarettes, use of IUDs, use of strong laundry detergents for your undergarments and pants, and diabetes.
Here are some tips and good practices, to consider, when dealing with bacterial vaginosis;
- Use a condom when having sex.
- Avoid having multiple sexual partners.
- Wear loose-fitting clothes and cotton undergarment as often as possible.
- Avoid douching. This is because douching removes healthy bacteria, that protects against infection, from the vagina.
- Use unscented pads and tampons.
- Drink a lot of water and fresh fruit juices and smoothies. These help to detoxify the body.
- Avoid stressful activities. You could also practice relaxation techniques such as meditation. Stress tends to alter the natural pH of the body.
- Ensure your diet includes food that is rich in zinc and vitamins A, C, E and K. They help boost the immune system.
- Personal hygiene, especially around the genitals should be a priority. Ensure you wash the genitals well and allow to dry before wearing undergarments.
Below are home remedies and natural treatments to treat, and cure, bacterial vaginosis;
1. Hydrogen Peroxide
Hydrogen peroxide is an alternative to the conventional treatments for bacterial vaginosis. It helps to balance the pH and facilitates the good bacteria population around the vagina. Other than that, it eliminates inflammation and works as an antiseptic. If you have recurrent bacterial vaginosis, a single washout with hydrogen peroxide can help. Being a sensitive area, you may feel some sting which will disappear after a few minutes. Continue with this treatment until the problem subsides.
Since garlic has antimicrobial properties, it’s able to control bacterial and yeast infections. If you are looking for a natural alternative to treat bacterial vaginosis (BV), use a fresh garlic clove, mash it and apply to the affected area. Leave it for twenty minutes before cleaning with warm water.
The second option is to take fresh garlic and insert it into the vagina for half an hour. Furthermore, you should make garlic part of your everyday diet. You can either cook or eat it in raw form. If you don’t like the taste of fresh garlic, you can go for garlic capsules. Follow this remedy until the bacteria disappear.
Probiotics are the good bacteria for your digestive system. Unlike a placebo, probiotics help to fight unhealthy fungi and bacteria. Thankfully, you can get probiotics from some foods like greek yogurt and kefir. Some women prefer to use probiotics tampons by cooling them and inserting into the vagina. Be sure you are not on any antibiotics when taking probiotics. Otherwise, the good bacteria will not treat the underlying condition. If you have symptoms associated with bacterial vaginosis, you should take fermented foods and cottage cheese every day.
4. Apple Cider Vinegar (ACV)
ACV is a natural antibacterial that helps to balance the good and the bad bacteria. Apart from that, it helps to balance the pH level in the body. For best results, it’s recommended that you use the raw, unfiltered variety. To get rid of BV, create a solution by dissolving two tablespoons of apple cider vinegar in a glass of water to clean the vulva and the surrounding area. And because apple cider vinegar is slightly acidic, it will clear the bacteria without harming your body.
Alternatively, you can add two glasses of unfiltered ACV in your bathing water. It’s important that you pay proper attention to the lower part of your body to reap the full benefits. Use either of these methods every day until the symptoms disappear.
5. Boric Acid
Boric acid has antifungal and antiseptic properties. It’s also helpful in the treatment of bacterial vaginosis symptoms like itchiness, irritation, and pain. Besides that, the boric acid helps to cleanse the vagina and balances the pH levels. To clear the bad bacteria, insert the boric acid capsule into the vagina every night before going to bed until the infection clears. Let it stay overnight and then clean in the morning with warm water. Boric acid should not be used in pregnant women.
6. Tea Tree Oil
Tea tree oil can help to kill certain types of bacteria as well as yeast infections. It’s also able to combat the harmful bacteria associated with BV. To use this treatment, add three drops of tea tree oil in a small bowl of lukewarm water. Soak a clean bathing towel and gently clean your vagina. Alternatively, you can add four cups of vinegar and a few drops of tea tree oil in your bathing water and then sit in the solution for thirty minutes. Use this treatment every other day for one month.
Fenugreek helps to balance the pH levels in your vagina. It also acts as a strong immune booster which hastens the healing process. To use this treatment method, dissolve fenugreek powder in a glass of water and drink the solution on an empty stomach. Alternatively, you can soak fenugreek seeds in a cup of hot water for five minutes five minutes. Add some honey and drink the solution up to three times a day. Continue with this treatment until you notice some improvement in your condition.
Chamomile has antifungal properties. It can effectively alleviate pain, swelling, itching and the burning sensation. To make chamomile tea, place a tea bag in a cup of water. After five minutes, squeeze out the extra water and place the bag inside your vagina. Safely remove the bag after thirty minutes. Continue with this treatment twice a day until you clear the bacteria.
9. Coconut Oil
Coconut oil has antiviral, antifungal and antibacterial properties. That’s why it’s able to kill the microbes that cause BV. For optimal results, you should put some coconut oil into the vagina two times a day until the symptoms disappear. Alternatively, you can dip a tampon into the oil and insert it into the vagina. Let it stay there for a couple of hours. Once you take it out, clean the vagina with warm water. To hasten the healing process, use this remedy at least three times a week.
10. Oregano Oil
If you have a bacterial vaginosis infection that keeps coming back, you can use oregano oil. To use this treatment, you should mix one tablespoon of olive oil with three drops of oregano oil and apply on the affected area. Leave it for 2 hours before cleaning with lukewarm water. Alternatively, pour three drops of oregano oil in warm water and drink the solution. This way, you’ll flush out the toxins. You can use this remedy for a couple of weeks until you get the desired results.
11. Indian Lilac
Indian lilac contains antifungal and antibacterial properties that help to reduce the itching. Just heat the Indian lilac leaves in a pan, allow them to cool and grind them into a fine powder. You can mix the powder with a little water to create a paste. Apply it inside and around the vagina and leave it for one hour. After that, rinse with cold water. Continue with this treatment until the symptoms are completely gone.
12. Cold Compress
Cold compress is a natural treatment that can relieve you from burning sensation, itching and discomfort around the affected area. Just wrap a few ice cubes with a clean cloth and press on your vagina for one minute. Perform this procedure a couple of times. You can also use very cold water to clean your vagina several times a day.
This is another simple remedy for bacterial vaginosis. Echinacea helps the body to fight infection by boosting the immune system. Take 100 mg capsules of echinacea up to three times a day. It’s crucial that you talk to your doctor before you start taking any supplement.
14. Safe Hygiene Practices
Bacterial vaginosis is linked to bad odor so it’s important that you embrace proper hygiene practices. And because vagina is a self-cleaning organ, you should avoid using perfumes and soap. This is because such products interfere with the vaginal pH. To get rid of the foul-smelling odor, just wipe from front to back. Of course, you should do this on daily basis.
This is an excellent home remedy for BV. Milk contains lactobacilli bacteria that can make your immune system stronger. Simply put a tampon in a glass of milk and place it in your vagina for a couple of hours. Repeat a couple of times for one week. Alternatively, put one tablespoon of turmeric powder in a glass of milk to make a solution. Drink it once a day until the infection disappears.
16. Aloe Vera
The soothing and healing properties of this wonder plant make it a perfect remedy for BV. When the itching is unbearable, you should apply the aloe gel to the vagina area including the inner walls. With this in mind, it’s important that you shave the affected area for easy application. Continue with this remedy until the itching disappears.
While this may sound virtually impossible, it provides quick relief from BV symptoms. Just take a cabbage, remove the hard veins, and crush into smaller pieces. Cover them in gauze and leave them inside your pants. You can also use a sanitary napkin to keep them in place.
18. Black Walnut
Black walnut has antiseptic properties which make them effective in healing infections associated with BV. You can either take supplements of black walnut or apply a tincture of the walnut. Continue with this remedy until the itching and other symptoms subside.
19. Folic Acid (Folates)
Folic acid is a potent remedy for bacterial vaginosis. Folic acid is rich in vitamin B and taking a diet rich in folic acid like broccoli, leafy greens, spinach, and avocado will help eliminate BV. It’s advisable that you take these foods in their natural form. Simply make them part of your daily diet. On the other hand, you can take folic acid supplements. Be sure to follow the doctor’s instructions.
20. Cranberry Juice
Cranberry contains proanthocyanidins which prevent harmful bacteria from taking charge of our bodies. Cranberry is also able to alter the cell membranes of the bacteria making it hard to come into contact with other cells. When taken in its purest form, cranberry does not have any side effects. Other than that, cranberry is also affordable. If you are a sexually active woman, you should make cranberry part of your daily routine. If you don’t have cranberry, you can take blueberry juice.
21. Calendula Tea
Calendula has strong anti-inflammatory properties which make it perfect for BV. To make calendula tea, boil the leaves in water for ten minutes. After that, you should take a clean cloth, put it in the tea, and gently rub into your vagina. This will reduce the redness and irritation caused by the bacterial infection. You should use this treatment until the infection disappears.
22. Citrus Fruits
Citrus fruits are a great source of vitamin C. By taking citrus fruits, your body is able to fight the bad odor and vaginal infection. You can also take fruit juices from oranges, grapefruits, and lemons. Take citrus fruits alongside your daily diet to keep all infections at bay.
Tracheal is a common herb for vaginosis. It works by flushing out all the toxins from the body. You should steep one teaspoon of tracheal herb in a glass of hot water. Keep it covered for about ten minutes before taking. Drink up to four glasses in a day and the symptoms are gone. Another way of using tracheal is as a decoction. Once the decoction cools down, apply to the affected part to kill the bacteria.
24. Clove Oil
Clove oil is one of the most effective treatments for treating BV. The good thing about clove herb is that you can use it as oil or tea. To treat BV, put some water in your bathing tub and pour a few drops of clove oil. And since the oil is acidic, you should not use too much to avoid burning your genital area. Make clove oil part of your everyday routine when taking a bath.
Goldenseal is effective in elimination of the vagina odor and boosting the immune system. This herb contains alkaloids which give it antibacterial properties. You should steep one spoonful of goldenseal in a cup of hot water. After it cools down, deep a cotton cloth into the solution and cleans your vagina. You can also buy goldenseal capsules. Take them as directed by the doctor until the smell clears.
Sage has antibacterial and antimicrobial properties which make it potent for treating BV. To make sage tea, you should add a few pieces of sage in water and boil for fifteen minutes. Let it steep for about ten minutes. By drinking this tea every day, you’ll get some relief from bacterial vaginosis. Alternatively, you can add one cup of boiling sage in your bathing water and then take a long soak. Continue with this remedy until you get the desired results.
Due to its strong antimicrobial properties, thyme relieves itching, discharge, and thrush. You should add two tablespoons of thyme in a cup of water and then use the thyme solution for a vaginal rinse. You can also mix a few drops of thyme oil with jojoba oil. To get the best results, apply on the affected area and rinse off after about thirty minutes. You can use this herb for several days until you get the desired results.
Yogurt contains lactobacillus which creates a harmful environment for “bad” bacteria. There is scientific evidence that yogurt gives your body a natural balance. The good thing about this remedy is that it does not have any side effects. You should either consume unsweetened yogurt or soak a cotton wool, in yogurt, and insert in your vagina. Continue with this remedy until you get some relief.
29. Essential Oils
A combination of lavender oil, myrrh oil, and apricot essential oil help to combat bacterial vaginosis. They restore the pH level and support the growth of healthy bacteria. Simply mix these oils in equal amounts and apply on the affected area. Rinse off with cold water after fifteen minutes. Use the aroma oils every day until the BV is cleared.
30. Tea Bags
Since tea has antibiotic and astringent properties, it’s able to reduce the irritation and burning sensation in the vagina. Just soak some tea bags in lukewarm water for twenty minutes. Once it cools down, place the bag on the vaginal area to relieve the sensations. For optimal results, do this three times, a day, for several weeks.
31. Guava Leaves
Guava leaves contain antioxidant, anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties. To treat BV, boil a handful of guava leaves for thirty minutes. Once the resulting solution cools, clean the affected area thoroughly. Use this guava leaves solution two times a day.
32. Mango Leaves
This is a favorite choice for women suffering from bacterial vaginosis. Mango leaves exhibit antiseptic and antiviral characteristics. They also contain several minerals like potassium, iron, and phosphorus which protect the body against infections. You should boil the leaves and clean the infected area with the solution when it has cooled down.
33. Indian Gooseberry
Indian Gooseberry is rich in vitamin C, alkaloids, amino acids, and phenol compounds. Besides that, it has laxative and cooling properties which make it ideal for BV. You should soak a few slices of Indian Gooseberry in water and let it stay overnight. Take one cup of the solution in the morning. Follow this process for at least one month.
34. Baking Soda (Sodium Bicarbonate)
Baking soda is an alkali which neutralizes the pH level. On top of that, it acts as a disinfectant and helps to eliminate the fish-like odor. Unlike most other remedies, it treats the root cause of the problem instead of the symptoms. To flush out the bacteria that causes the infection, dissolve baking soda in a basin of water and clean the infected area thoroughly. Alternatively, you can mix baking soda and gelatin capsules with water. Use this remedy until the infection is gone.
35. Lemongrass Oil
Lemongrass oil is obtained from lemongrass herb. Due to its antimicrobial characteristics, it’s able to prevent the growth of the unhealthy BV bacteria. In addition to that, it relieves the pain and irritation associated with BV. You should mix lemongrass oil with coconut oil in equal amounts and apply in the vagina. Wash off after thirty minutes. Make sure the oils are not too concentrated.
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