Dealing with recurring Bacterial Vaginosis (BV) is hard. You have to be determined to keep fighting and try to find the cause of why your BV keeps coming back. At the same time, it’s also extremely important to strengthen your immune system so that it can hopefully take care of future infections without the need of antibiotics.
We created a list of our “go-to” products that will help you cope with recurring BV. Each item in this list has a specific use and is aimed to solve a specific problem that could be related to your recurring BV.
We’re huge fans of probiotics! The medical treatment for BV is usually antibiotics. Unfortunately, antibiotics kill both good and bad bacteria (the good bacteria is the one that helps keep your PH level in balance and is crucial to your vaginal health!). It is extremely important to take good probiotics on a daily basis to help your vagina get back to its normal PH level (3.5 - 4.5).
First time probiotics user? Start with our 15 Billion daily probiotics and get your body used to this new supplement.
Our probiotics contain 8 live strains of vaginal friendly probiotics in addition to prebiotic!
2) pH Strips
Your vaginal PH level is the first indicator to know if your BV is back or if you’re on track to get rid of it for good! A healthy vaginal PH level is between 3.5 - 4.5. Anything 5 and above is NOT acidic enough and creates an ideal environment for bad bacteria overgrowth. It is very hard to know the cause of your BV. Testing & monitoring your PH level on a daily basis could help you figure out the cause of increased PH level (e.g. certain food, clothes, condoms, etc).
3) Cotton Underwear
Your vagina needs to breathe all day long! Oftentimes, underwear that are made from unbreathable fabrics may create a humid and wet environment which is perfect for… BAD bacteria! We, of course don’t want that and recommend you only use underwear that are made of 95% cotton. In addition to that, try to wear light, airly clothes during the hot summer months (aka not tight jeans or leggings) and change clothes often during hot, humid days.
One of the trickiest things that can cause BV is the lube used during intercourse. Glycerin, which is a common component found in almost any lube, may turn into sugar in the vagina which will feed the bad bacteria and encourage overgrowth. Oftentimes, even if you are already using a high-quality lube, pre-lubed condoms are made with cheap, low quality lube that contains glycerin and other mystery ingredients. We highly recommend using lube free condoms to minimize the chances of harmful ingredients affecting your vagina.
It’s extremely important for you to make sure your vitamin intake is sufficient. Many studies show that specific vitamins (like Vitamin D, and K) may help with recurring BV.
6) Period Underwear
It may sound weird at first, but these period underwear are life savers! Fun fact - period blood’s PH level is pretty high (typically, 7.4) and could increase the overall vaginal PH level which will then cause overgrowth of bad bacteria. If you’re using tampons, it’s best to try and find an alternative option. Most tampons are produced using chemicals and ingredients that are not vagina friendly, and the blood that accumulates in the tampon for a few hours or overnight, may increase your vaginal PH level. We really fell in love with ModiBodi’s period underwear! We recommend changing them every 4-6 hours, depending on your flow, and getting a few different types (they have overnight, heavy flow, medium flow, etc) so you can switch them up! The smell is non-existent and they are easy to clean in a regular washing machine.
If you’re still not convinced about the period underwear, another great option is a menstrual cup. While some cups are harder to insert and take out, we find the Flex cup to be very comfortable and easy to use, especially for first time users! We do recommend emptying the cup every 3-5 hours though, because it is not great for blood to sit still for a long period of time. While the blood does stay inside the vagina similar to a tampon, it is collected in a cup that separates it from the vaginal walls. More than that, the cup is made out of high-quality medical grade silicon. Flex patented a cute handle that makes the removal part so easy!
Oregano oil is known to assist with immune support and help our body fight off bacterias and infections. Many refer to it as the “natural antibiotics”. It is great to take an oregano oil supplement 1-3 times a day whenever you feel BV is coming back or at times when you are typically sensitive to BV (many girls get BV right after their period and/or after having sex because of the increase in PH level). Make sure you don’t overdo it though! Take the oregano oil supplement for up to 7 days in a row and then take a break.
As we previously mentioned, it’s very important to keep chemicals away from the vaginal area in an attempt to prevent BV. Many laundry detergents contain chemicals that are passed to our clothes. We highly recommend using a natural detergent and start using it as quickly as possible. We tried a few different detergents and found that Tide’s pureclean natural detergent is the most effective and healthy option
It’s not a coincidence that we put Boric Acid as the last option. While many women recommend using it for BV and it is safe to use ONLY when inserted vaginally, it still has the potential of being lethal if taken orally or consumed by a pet, child, or adult by accident. Please note as well that while boric acid helps with the odor that accompanies BV, it usually does not make it go away that same way antibiotics do. Treat boric acid as a bandage rather than a permanent solution for BV.
BONUS: Diet & Water
A healthy diet will help your overall immune system work better! Cut down on sugar, alcohol, and caffeine and make sure you drink plenty of water throughout the day. Opt to cook your meals instead of eating fast-food/takeouts. This will go a long way in helping you bring your body back to balance. If you'd like to learn more about a healthy diet that will help you with fighting off recurring bacterial vaginosis, please click here.