8 Natural Treatments for Bacterial Vaginosis

· June 22, 2017
These remedies can be very effective in alleviating the itching and burning of bacterial vaginosis. However, if it persists, you should see a doctor.

BV, or bacterial vaginosis, is an inflammation of the female genitals characterized by a foul-smelling white secretion. It tends to be caused by the growth of a group of bacteria that cause an imbalance of the PH in this area of the body. Have you ever wondered if there are any natural remedies for it? Today is all about DIY home treatments for bacterial vaginosis.

This condition is much more common than people think.  According to the Center for Disease Control, bacterial vaginosis is the most common vaginal disease among women 14-45. In fact, it is estimated that more than 20 million women in the US currently have it. Nevertheless, it is still relatively unheard of because the majority of patients claim to have no or very little symptoms, making it difficult to diagnose and treat properly.

The most characteristic symptoms of vaginosis are:

  • redness
  • swelling
  • pain
  • burning

In some women, symptoms are very slight or even be nonexistent, so going to your yearly doctor’s appointment will help to keep you healthy.

Although very common, you don’t need to worry too much: there are several treatments for bacterial vaginosis. It’s always good to remember before any self-medication that you should consult with your general doctor before trying anything new. Also, it’s a good idea to start with a good hygiene routine in this area.

DIY treatments for bacterial vaginosis

1. Cumin

This spice is a potent natural anti-fungal that can be used to minimize and make the symptoms of vaginosis completely disappear. This common condiment has volatile oils with antimicrobial and antifungal properties that can help your vaginal flora regain its balance.

To take advantage of these elements, you should take cumin dissolved in oil. If you don’t really want to straight up swallow a tablespoon of oil, dilute plain cumin in a glass of whole fat milk. Then, drink it once a day until you see results.

Also read: 5 practical uses of cumin

2. Cold water

cold water can be an easy treatment for bacterial vaginosis

Even though it can be uncomfortable, try cold water. To do this, wet a wash cloth with cold water and apply it directly.  This will minimize the redness and swelling. The low temperature of the water will make the blood vessels contract, thus easing the itching and redness.

This is one of the simpler remedies to help the annoying symptoms. However, it isn’t a permanent fix and should be paired with other treatments for bacterial vaginosis.

3. Neem

This plant has excellent anti-bacterial properties.  Although it comes in a variety of presentations, it’s advised to use the powder version when applying to the skin. Neem is very effective and several studies show its benefits in treatments for bacterial vaginosis.

In this case, you should start by applying neem in the affected zone. Then, it will slowly control overgrown bacterial populations in your vagina, thus easing the pain and even eliminating the condition.

4. Garlic

Garlic has lots of antifungal and antibacterial properties. Moreso, studies show that garlic has similar effects on vaginosis as metronidazole, the usual medication recommended by doctors. Thus, you could skip metronidazole’s nasty side effects and still get rid of vaginosis.

If you want to try this, peeled garlic cloves, as well as the capsules, can help to reduce symptoms and cure bacterial vaginosis. This can be taken once or twice a day or applied carefully to the affected area.

5. Chamomile tea

This infusion can be a great help in minimizing itching. Due to its well-known antibacterial properties, chamomile can be a great treatment for bacterial vaginosis as it controls overgrown populations.

What to do

  • First, soak a tea bag in hot water.
  • Then, take the bag out and let it cool down in the fridge.
  • Later on, apply the tea bag directly over the irritated area.

It is important to keep it in the refrigerator and avoid contact with any contaminated substance. A good option is to put the tea bag in a plastic bag or in a sterile container.

6. Natural yogurt

Another way to help with this condition is to soak a cotton ball in plain yogurt and apply it directly to the irritated area.

If the irritation is intense, you can soak a tampon in the yogurt and insert it into the vagina.

This will be a great help since beneficial bacteria in the yogurt helps to control the harmful bacteria inside you. In addition, remember to include a portion of yogurt in your daily diet to up your probiotic intake and naturally rebalance the bacterias  in your body.

7. Antibacterial smoothie

Smoothies are a great option to add more veggies to your diet. On the other hand, they can also be useful for treating other conditions because they’re an ideal vessel for lots of good ingredients.

As one of the best treatments for bacterial vaginosis, try this recipe.

Ingredients

  • A handful of parsley
  • A thumb of ginger
  • One garlic clove
  • Greens (spinach, arugula, etc)
  • Strong-flavored fruit (i.e. mango, pineapple, banana, berries)

What to do

  • To start, carefully peel the ginger and the garlic clove. On the other hand, wash all the vegetables to get rid of any remaining dirt in them.
  • Put all the ingredients and some ice in a blender, and blend until smooth.
  • Finally, drink fresh twice a day

Why it works

The garlic in the smoothie has strong antibacterial effects. On the other hand, the rest of the ingredients will also reduce inflammation and itching. By drinking them all together you will significantly reduce symptoms such as pain and burning caused by this type of infection.

8. Cedar oil

To use this homemade remedy to combat vaginitis you only have to prepare a hot water bath with a tablespoon full of salt and several drops of this oil.

Cedar essential oil has antiseptic, calming, and anti-fungal properties.

This means that it will help keep the symptoms of vaginitis under control while eliminating the bacteria that cause the problem.

Visit this article: 5 reasons you have vaginal itching if you don’t have an infection

Some basic recommendations to combat bacterial vaginitis

To greatly reduce the symptoms and to prevent bacterial vaginitis from returning, follow these simple guidelines:

  • Keep good hygiene
  • Wear clean underwear every day
  • Shower with warm water
  • Regularly wash your towels, sheets, pillowcases and other articles of daily use.

However, even if you are very careful with all of the above, chances are that you will have to contend with an infection of this type at some time. Don’t worry! It’s very easy to treat.

  • Koumans EH, Sternberg M, Bruce C, McQuillan G, Kendrick J, Sutton M, Markowitz LE. (2007) The prevalence of bacterial vaginosis in the United States, 2001-2004; associations with symptoms, sexual behaviors, and reproductive healthExternalSex Transm Dis. 2007 Nov;34(11):864-9.
  • Shetty, R. S., Singhal, R. S., & Kulkarni, P. R. (1994). Antimicrobial properties of cumin. World Journal of Microbiology and Biotechnology10(2), 232-233.
  • Subapriya, R., & Nagini, S. (2005). Medicinal properties of neem leaves: a review. Current Medicinal Chemistry-Anti-Cancer Agents5(2), 149-156.
  • Van Kessel, K., Assefi, N., Marrazzo, J., & Eckert, L. (2003). Common complementary and alternative therapies for yeast vaginitis and bacterial vaginosis: a systematic review. Obstetrical & gynecological survey58(5), 351-358.
  • Mohammadzadeh, F., Dolatian, M., Jorjani, M., Majd, H. A., & Borumandnia, N. (2014). Comparing the therapeutic effects of garlic tablet and oral metronidazole on bacterial vaginosis: a randomized controlled clinical trial. Iranian Red Crescent Medical Journal16(7).