First called Gardnerella Vaginitis, Bacterial Vaginosis or simply BV is vaginal condition resulting from an overgrowth of the different bacteria living in it. Unlike sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) that are caused by foreign bacteria, this condition is brought about the unbalanced number of Bacteroides, Eubacterium, Fusobacterium, Lactobacillus, Peptostreptococcus, and many other types of bacteria living in the vaginal area. When BV occurs, discharge that comes with a foul odor can be noticed. BV is not fatal but should be given proper attention so as to distinguish it from serious diseases like Gonorrhea and Chlamydia. While it is most noted in pregnant women, women, in general, can get BV and should seek medical attention.
Having a number of sexual partners can increase the risks of getting BV but it cannot be a transmitted disease because it is a vaginal abnormality. If having women partners, the spread of BV may be possible. Other risk factors of BV include cigarette smoking, intrauterine devices (IUDs) used for birth controls, antibiotic use, and vaginal douching. This is contacted by using different hot tubs, swimming pools, toilet seats or even touching any BV contaminated objects. Symptoms include the noticeable quantity of vaginal discharge, often grayish white and thin with a fishy odor, occurring post-intercourse. Rarely, BV may include pain during intercourse or when urinating.
Complications of Bacterial Vaginosis
Bacterial Vaginosis usually go away on its own but because of the sensitivity of the case, it is best that the advice of an expert is sought. In most cases, to ensure accuracy in diagnoses, doctors would require a pelvic test and acquire samples for other serious diseases like Gonorrhea and Chlamydia.
Fever and pain are signs of complications, which can only be identified by experts. Complications like HIV infection and genital herpes can be contracted thus increases the need to get medical help. As there are no home remedies for BV, antibiotics are the common medication.
Expecting mothers should also take caution as BV can actually cause premature labor and miscarriages among many other complications.
Prevention of Bacterial Vaginosis
Due to the fact that the causes and the association of BV to other complications are very limited, prevention of this vaginal abnormality is a bit difficult. But with a few facts about the condition being made public, it is best to avoid them.
- Avoid having a lot of sexual partners. While BV is an abnormality of the vagina is definitely STD, which means will not be contracted from men, it is still important to practice safe sex. If involved in having sexual relationship with women, it is a must to ensure that they are clean and free from BV as they can be carrier of such condition.
- Keep oneself from douching. Douching can actually do more bad than good because it may cause an imbalance of bacteria in the vaginal area. Also, while many others believe that antibacterial solutions can clean, experts claim that there is no actual association between douching and maintaining the vagina healthy. In fact, this can even cause problems in the upper reproductive system.