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admin | Herbal Remedies For Bv | 10.03.2015
Ladies, if you have ever been in the unfortunate position of having a rip-roaring vaginal yeast infection, this is the article for you. Almost every woman has, at one time, experienced that “Ummm… something’s not quite right down there…” sensation.
Firstly, let’s just say that, contrary to what some people (even some male doctors) believe, not all vaginal discharge is abnormal. Douching: We thought that people stopped doing this in the seventies, but it turns out that it is still popular in some social circles.
Contraception: Oral contraceptive pills, IUD’s, condoms, and spermicide (especially nonoxynol-9) have been associated with increased yeast infections. Sluttiness: Just kidding, we don’t judge – but having unprotected sex can put you at high risk for a lot of bad things, including Trichomoniasis. BV is a very common cause of vaginal annoyance – a third of women who visit their doctor complaining of a vaginal issue end up being diagnosed with BV.
Candida is a yeast – yes, similar to the yeast that makes your bread and beer delicious – that is present on many people’s skin, but can make vaginas exceptionally angry. Trichomoniasis is caused by a little protozoan with a tail (named Trichomonas) that swims around in seminal or vaginal fluid, causing mischief. DEAR MAYO CLINIC: What is the difference between bacterial vaginosis and a yeast infection? ANSWER: Bacterial vaginosis, or BV, and vaginal yeast infections may have some symptoms that seem similar, but they have different causes and require different treatment. BV and yeast infections both fall under the broad category of vaginal infections, called vaginitis. BV is the result of an overgrowth of one of several organisms normally present in your vagina.
One of the most common reasons for an overgrowth of anaerobic bacteria is douching — rinsing out your vagina with water or a cleansing agent. Prescription medications such as metronidazole, clindamycin and tinidazole often can effectively treat BV. If you have never had a rip-roaring vaginal yeast infection, this article is also for you…for the future. Today we’ll be discussing three cases of vaginas gone wrong – Bacterial Vaginosis, Candida Vulvovaginitis, and Trichomoniasis.
Happy, well-adjusted vaginas can regularly release a small amount of milky, whitish, or clear fluid daily.  This fluid is made up of sloughed off cells from the vaginal lining (vaginal cells slough off just like your other skin cells). Taking antibiotics can kill the healthy bacteria your vagina likes and needs, making room for other bacteria or yeast that your vagina hates. Once again, this is not a good reason to stop using contraception – yeast infections, though annoying, are much less annoying than unwanted babies and incurable STD’s.


Although almost half of women with BV have no symptoms at all, most complain of a fishy-smelling discharge that can be yellow, creamy white, green, or gray (have we ruined your appetite yet?  Our sincere apologies). This is the type of yeast that many women self-treat with over-the-counter creams but it is, in fact, less common than BV, accounting for about a quarter of the women who come to the doctor with vaginal symptoms. Trichomonas, although cute, is without a doubt an STI, and can be easily prevented by wearing condoms with every sexual encounter.
Happy, healthy vaginas have their own natural balance of bacteria and anything that disrupts that delicate balance can cause itching, discharge, or odor.
Usually, the “good” bacteria, called lactobacilli, outnumber the “bad” bacteria, called anaerobes. In most cases, douching is not recommended because it disrupts the vaginal environment and can lead to BV, as well as other types of vaginitis, including a vaginal yeast infection. For yeast infections, antifungal creams, ointments, tablets or suppositories usually are all that’s needed to restore the vaginal balance of bacteria and yeast and eliminate symptoms. It’s possible that a yeast infection or BV may not be the problem, and further evaluation is needed. Because chances are, if you are in possession of a vagina, you will, at some point in your life, have a yeast infection.
Not the sexiest part of womanhood, but often an unavoidable aspect of it. All three have simple treatments and sound much more sinister than they actually are. It’s never a good idea – you are flooding your personal space with a bunch of annoying, irritating chemicals that will make your vagina unhappy and make it easier for that delicate balance to be disrupted. But of course, this isn’t a reason for not taking antibiotics if you really need them. An imbalanced vagina is easier to treat than Scarlet Fever.
Women with yeast infections often have a thick, curd-like white discharge that kind of smells, well, yeasty. If you think that your vagina’s balance is off, it’s a good idea to see a doctor. With a quick swab of your vagina (you don’t usually need a speculum for this) and examination via microscope or laboratory, he or she can diagnose the problem and treat it accordingly. If anaerobic bacteria become too numerous, they upset the natural balance of microorganisms in your vagina, resulting in bacterial vaginosis. Antibiotic use can cause a decrease in the amount of lactobacillus bacteria in your vagina, allowing yeast to overgrow. A yeast infection causes discharge that is thick and white, with a cottage-cheese type appearance. To make a diagnosis, your doctor likely will perform a pelvic exam and take a sample of vaginal secretions to be examined under a microscope.
If a yeast infection is causing severe symptoms, or if the infection comes back multiple times, additional treatment may be necessary to keep the yeast in check. Also, if you have a STI, (and you might not even know it if you do) douching can push the evil bacteria into your uterus and fallopian tubes in an ugly, infectious tidal wave, making the problem much, much worse.


No one knows the exact cause of BV, but we know that somehow there is an overgrowth of new, annoying bacteria in the vagina, usually Gardnerella vaginalis, Mobiluncus, or Mycoplasma hominis (the can be seen in the picture to the right…the little dark spots mixed in with the large healthy cells are the unwanted intruders). Unlike BV, yeast infections can make your vagina and vulva notably painful, itchy, and red.
Women with Trichomoniasis usually have a significant amount of thin, discolored, foamy discharge, as well as a strange odor and itching.
All three conditions can be cured quite easily so there’s no reason to try and fight it off alone. We’re here for you… might as well let us help! You need to know which type of infection you have, however, to make sure you get the right treatment.
Women who take birth control pills containing estrogen, who are pregnant, who have uncontrolled diabetes, or whose immune systems are weakened are also at an increased risk for yeast infections. BV is associated with a foul, “fishy” vaginal odor, while most women don’t notice an odor with a yeast infection. And even though it may be slightly unpleasant to think about, normal vaginas are full of bacteria (just like many other places in the body…your nose, for instance, is packed full of bacteria). The best way to clean down there is with some gentle soap and water on the outside. Also falling into the “no no” category would be other irritants such as hygiene sprays, bubble baths, and perfumed detergents.
BV can be more likely to rear its ugly head when a woman has been involved with a new sexual partner, and studies have shown a concordance of BV between lesbian partners; however, there is no clear evidence that it is sexually transmitted. As we said before, many women will try over-the-counter creams but, if for some reason the symptoms persist or come back, it is important to see a doctor and make sure there isn’t something more serious going on. When the infection gets really bad, it can cause fever and lower abdominal pain (but these can be symptoms of other serious infections as well).
A yeast infection also typically causes itching, particularly in younger women, and may include a burning sensation, especially during urination.
Every woman’s “vaginal flora,” as we medical folk call it, is made up of a personalized balance of different species of bacteria, kind of like how every forest has a slightly different mix of foliage. Studies have shown that most women aren’t very good at diagnosing yeast infections on their own so don’t hesitate to go in for a check-up if you’re unsure.
Trichomonas also likes company – a third of women who have it will have another STI at the same time. Most vaginas are in a peaceful symbiosis with Lactobacillus acidophilus and Staphylococcus epidermidis.



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