Neither vaginal dryness nor a bacterial vaginal infection (bacterial vaginosis, or BV for short) are high on any woman’s bucket list, but unfortunately chancesare good that you may be confronted by both of them at some stage in your life.1,2Vaginal dryness and other related symptoms such as vaginal irritation, vaginal burning or itching and painful intercourse can occur at any time during awoman’s life cycle, but are most common after menopause. 1,3Around 1 out of 2 women are affected by vaginal symptoms such as vaginal dryness during menopause.1So, what causes it?As women get older, their ovaries produce less oestrogen, thus the amount of oestrogen available in their bodies is less.⁴ Oestrogen maintains the vaginallining and normal vaginal lubrication [...]
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Women in their reproductive years are most likely to get bacterial vaginosis (BV), but it can affect women of any age. The cause of BV isn't completely understood, but certain activities, such as unprotected sex can increase your risk of developing the disease. 1 Bacterial vaginosis results from overgrowth of one of several bacteria naturally found in your vagina. Usually, "good" bacteria (lactobacilli) outnumber "bad" bacteria. However, if there are too many bad bacteria, they upset the natural balance of microorganisms in your vagina and can cause bacterial vaginosis. 1 Having multiple sex partners or a new sex partner may increase your risk of infection compared to women who have a single partner. Bacterial vaginosis also occurs [...]
Bacterial vaginosis (BV) is an infection caused by having too much of a certain type of bacteria in the vagina.1,2 The vagina naturally maintains a balance of lactobacilli, which are beneficial bacteria. These are often referred to as the vaginal flora or microbiota. When vaginal flora is out of balance, harmful anaerobic bacteria take over.1 Men can’t get BV because the penis doesn’t have the same delicate balance of bacteria. In addition, bacterial vaginosis doesn’t spread like a sexually transmitted infection (STI).1 However, experts aren’t as sure about whether men can spread BV to female partners.1 A 2015 study involving 165 uncircumcised men concluded that participants who had one or more female sexual partners, aside from their [...]
A vaginal gel is only for use in the vagina. Do not take by mouth or apply to other areas of the body. Follow the directions on the product package insert. 1,2 Hygiene 2 To ensure maximum hygiene, always Wash your hands before opening the tube or touching the applicators Use a new applicator for each dose Immediately throw away the used applicator in the waste bin Opening the tube 2 Before using a vaginal gel you will need to puncture the metal seal on the tube. To do this, simply unscrew the cap from the tube and pierce the seal using the pointed tip of the cap. Filling the applicator 2 Remove an applicator from the wrapper. Unscrew [...]
Bacterial vaginosis may clear up on its own, however, in some women, it doesn't go away on its own. For many women, it comes back after it has cleared up.1 What happens if I don’t get treated? 2 Bacterial vaginosis left untreated can cause some serious health risks, including: Increasing your chance of getting HIV if you have sex with someone who is infected with HIV If you are HIV positive, increasing your chance of passing HIV to your sex partner Making it more likely that you will deliver your baby too early if you have BV while pregnant Increasing your chance of getting other STDs, such as chlamydia and gonorrhea. These bacteria can sometimes cause pelvic [...]
With so many female hygiene products on the market it’s becoming more difficult to sift through the do’s and don’ts. Often the not-so-harmless habits and products that you use can have a significant impact on the health of your lady parts. 1 Vaginal health is an important part of a woman's overall health. Ongoing vaginal health issues can cause stress or relationship problems and impact your self-confidence. 2 What can you do to keep your vagina healthy? 1. Go for whole body health. Eat right, control your weight and exercise, it’s good for your sexual organs and overall health.3 2. Get vaccinated. Vaccinations can protect you from HPV, the virus associated with cervical cancer. 2 3. Practice [...]
The term sexually transmitted disease (STD) is used to refer to a condition passed from one person to another through sexual contact. You can contract an STD by having unprotected vaginal, anal, or oral sex with someone who has the STD. 1a An STD may also be called a sexually transmitted infection (STI) or venereal disease (VD). 1a It's possible to contract STDs from people who seem perfectly healthy, and who may not even be aware of the infection. STDs may be symptom-free (asymptomatic) which is one of the reasons experts prefer the term "sexually transmitted infections" (STIs) to "sexually transmitted diseases." 2a The number of STIs in Gauteng has increased by half a million in one [...]
ORAL OR TOPICAL TREATMENT FOR BACTERIAL VAGINOSIS? There are many different treatment options on the market and at times it can be a daunting decision to determine which option to go with when treating bacterial vaginosis. You have a choice between intravaginal gels, creams or oral formulations. Your doctor or pharmacist can help you decide what type of treatment is most suitable for you. 1 Topical formulations Topical metronidazole is an antibiotic and is one of the recommended treatments options for bacterial vaginosis based on medical guidelines 2,3,4 Metronidazole gel has demonstrated a clinical clearance rate of more than 80% in women with bacterial vaginosis when checked two weeks after treatment was commenced5 Intravaginal gels have a lower systemic [...]
Does a “fishy” smell always mean an infection? Not all vaginal odours are caused by an infection. Every female has a natural vaginal scent that originates from the vagina. It's normal for your vagina to have a slight odour. 1,2 Vaginal odour may vary throughout your menstrual cycle and may be especially noticeable right after having sex. Though it may be tempting to douche or use a vaginal deodorant to decrease vaginal odour, these products may actually increase irritation and other vaginal symptoms. 1 Poor hygiene or tight-fitting clothing or fabric that doesn’t breathe can cause sweat and bacteria to get trapped which can cause and result in an unpleasant odour.2 A strong vaginal odour, [...]
Treatment options for bacterial vaginosis. The most effective treatments for bacterial vaginosis are prescribed antibiotics like metronidazole. They are available as oral medications, which are taken by mouth, or as a gel or cream, both of which are inserted into the vagina with an applicator 1 Your doctor may prescribe one of the following medications: Metronidazole - available in oral and gel form e.g. VaginalGel Metronidazole 0.75%. 2(VaginalGel comes with 5 single use applicators therefore you do not need to reuse the applicators) 3 Clindamycin - available as a cream. NOTE: Clindamycin cream may weaken latex condoms during treatment and for at least three days after you stop using the cream 2 Tinidazole - taken orally. NOTE: [...]