As a lady, your health is vital to you, and you would do anything to ensure that your body is not just beautiful on the outside, but clean and healthy on the inside.
A unique thing that you may not know about the vagina is that it is home to different bacteria, but mostly the good lactobacillus bacteria. This bacteria is not harmful; rather it prevents other bacteria that may be harmful from overgrowing in the vagina. Lactobacillus thrives on the environment of the vagina which is acidic.
When other harmful bacteria find it’s way down there, they may not survive the acidic nature of the vagina and die off, others which do survive would not multiply because lactobacillus is already present in the vagina. When the acidic PH is disturbed by other external factors, ‘bad’ bacteria begin to outgrow the lactobacillus then Bacterial Vaginosis or BV occurs. When you start to experience itching, pain during urinating, thin grey vaginal discharge, or you perceive a fishy smell from your vagina. Then it may be BV.
How You Can Prevent BV From Happening To You
1. Multiple Sex partners: Semen has an alkaline pH, and numerous sex partners could disrupt the acidic environment of the vagina, and this could lead to BV. Some ladies report that they have BV anytime they have a new partner. If you can limit your sexual relationship to only a single partner at a time, or wear a condom when you want to have sex with your new partner, this may go a long way in maintaining the bacterial community in your vagina.
2. Douching: Douching or using chemicals or scented soaps in your vagina can significantly disrupt the PH of the vagina and cause inflammation, irritation, and itching and may lead to BV. It is crucial that you also do not wash with medicated or antiseptic soaps but use ordinary water to wash, you should discontinue using any vagina wash or scents as they disturb the PH of the vagina.
3. Indiscriminate use of Antibiotics: In Nigeria, indiscriminate antibiotics use is a menace that should be curbed, and as a lady, if you use antibiotics without the proper prescription from the doctor, it could disturb the bacterial colonies and lead to BV. Always use antibiotics as prescribed and do not attempt to self medicate on drugs especially antibiotics.
4. Stress: Extreme stress can also affect the vaginal PH and lead to bacterial vaginosis. Overworking yourself every day or lack of sleep can increase the stress levels and affect vagina PH. It is essential to take time off from stressful activities to give your body time to repair itself.
5. High sugar intake: Taking in a large number of soft drinks, junk food, highly processed foods, sweets, and other sugary foods may also affect the natural acidic environment of the vagina. Reducing the quantity of sugar, you take in can significantly help to maintain your vagina PH in its acidic levels.
Your vagina is an essential part of your body, and its care should be paramount to you. Maintaining it’s acidic PH is not a cumbersome task and can be achieved with these simple steps.