BV Treatment Over the Counter

Bacterial vaginosis represents an infection that affects the vagina and, as the name suggests, is caused by bacteria. In general, vagina is a place where many bacteria coexist, both the bad and the good ones. In a healthy vagina, the good bacteria essentially regulate the growth of the bad ones. In the case of bacterial vaginosis, on the other hand, the right balance between the two types of bacteria is altered: there are too many harmful bacteria and not enough of the good ones. Although bacterial vaginosis in general has higher prevalence in sexually active women, the infection may be encountered as well if you do not have sex regularly. What is important, the infection does not manifest itself in approximately half of affected women. One of the most frequently occurring symptoms of bacterial vaginosis is abnormal vaginal discharge, with an unpleasant odour and yellow or white colour. The odour can be, furthermore, more strongly perceptible after sexual intercourse. However, unusual discharges may also result from other conditions, such as sexually transmitted infections, and should always be discussed with a doctor in case it’s present. It is not exactly known why the bacterial imbalance takes places, nonetheless, some activities increase the risk of contracting the infection. Frequent changing of sexual partners or douching, that is rinsing the vagina with water, predispose to bacterial vaginosis.

BV treatments

Typically, bacterial vaginosis is a mild infection that does not bring about additional health issues and shall end after several days. However, when left untreated, the infection may cause more severe health problems. Bacterial vaginosis is particularly dangerous for pregnant woman, as the infection aggravates the risk of miscarriage as well as premature birth. Moreover, a pelvic infection may occur in the case of undergoing different pelvic procedures (caesarean section or uterus removal, for example). Given that, it is worth to know how the infection can be treated. Bacterial vaginosis is diagnosed on the basis of physical signs and symptoms, through carrying out a pelvic examination as well as analysing the abnormal vaginal discharge may be required. Once diagnosed, the next step is usually antibiotic treatment. Common medications include Cleocin, Flagyl, and Tindamax. The antibiotics come in different forms, such as tablets, cream, or ovules, that need to be used vaginally. If the patient is pregnant, only tablets can be taken. As a general rule, the infection should be significantly reduced after 2-3 days with the use of antibiotic therapy. However, it is important to continue the treatment over the period of one week or as recommended by your doctor in order to successfully eradicate the infection and minimize the risk of its relapse. Antibiotic therapy is commonly well accepted by women and is not associated with any serious side effects. However, as it is usually the case with using antibiotics, the therapy can result in a vaginal yeast infection which, in turn, manifests itself with itching and white discharge, among other symptoms. At an early stage of the infection, its symptoms can be also treated with over the counter medications as well as other home use intended preparations and natural remedies.

Bacterial vaginosis treatment over the counter

Not many over the counter medications are available for treating bacterial vaginosis. Nevertheless, most of over the counter medications constitute preparations that are responsible for regulating the pH level of the vagina. Such drugs include, among others, the ones offered in the form of a gel. Acid Jelly, Gem PH, or Relagard contribute to keeping an appropriate vaginal acidity. Medications such as Bidette, Feminique, or Massengill Douche are intended for vaginal use as solutions. Moreover, Metronidazole, known also under its brand name Flagyl, can be purchased without prescription in some countries and is offered by various online pharmacies as well. The drug is an antibiotic that is available in the form of pills and creams. To treat bacterial vaginosis, the medication can be taken alone as well as with other antibiotics. Its side effects are manifested by headaches, nausea, loss of appetite, or metallic taste feeling. The drug should be avoided by pregnant women. You can also try using probiotic supplements that will help you to regain an optimal bacterial flora. Naturally occurring probiotics can be found mostly in yoghurts. Moreover, boric acid and tee tree oil are also known as having anti-bacterial properties. Boric acid capsules need to be used vaginally, while the oil has to be applied on infected areas upon prior dilution.

It should be clear from the above, that bacterial vaginosis does not only represent an unpleasant and embarrassing health condition, but it may lead to more serious health issues, especially in pregnant women. However, when approached properly, the infection treatment is effective, relatively simple, and quick. Antibiotics constitute standard treatment, but some over the counter medications as well as natural or homemade remedies help ease the infection symptoms. Taking pharmacological steps in order to treat bacterial vaginosis should be complemented, moreover, with a behavioral change. It is essential to maintain proper hygiene and wear breathable underwear both to facilitate the healing process as well as to avoid the infection in the first place.

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