INFECTION OF THE WEEK...BACTERIAL VAGINOSIS (AKA "BV")
WHAT IS BACTERIAL VAGINOSIS? –Bacterial Vaginosis, which is also known as BV and Gardnerella, is a common naturally occurring condition in women. Although the exact cause of BV isn’t known, it is thought to be a result of an overgrowth or imbalance of bacteria which live naturally in the vagina. Women that douche on a regular basis or use an IUD are actually more likely to get bacterial vaginosis. Having BV can also put you at an increased risk for other conditions including STI’S, pelvic inflammatory disease and complications during pregnancy.
SYMPTOMS –About half of all cases of BV don’t actually present any noticeable symptoms. When they do occur they usually include an off coloured or watery discharge and a really unpleasant odour that is overly fishy in smell. The symptoms can also come and go and are sometimes more noticeable during penetrable sex or a menstrual cycle.
TREATMENT AND PREVENTION –Unfortunately as half of all BV cases don’t present any symptoms it’s hard to know when to treat the infection because you need to be diagnosed first to receive treatment. However, if there are symptoms it’s a simple matter of going to the GP or sexual health clinic for a vaginal discharge swab. The swab is placed under a microscope to determine whether bacterial vaginosis is present. If BV is present, then treatment comes in the form of an antibiotic. There are a few things women can do to try to avoid getting BV. Avoiding smoking is one and also abstaining from douching or using scented or perfumed talcs, soaps or deodorants around the vagina.
Nobody likes rotten smelling fish do they?!
Love Lexi XXX