Ordinarily, it’s pretty unusual to hear someone talking about BV. We don’t even like using the full name. For the record, it’s bacterial vaginosis, and we’re going to talk about right now.
Because it’s miserable―and embarrassing―and people need to know more about it. BV is a condition that, while thankfully not extremely common, can be a tough cookie to deal with. Sufferers often find that symptoms are difficult to get rid of, and can recur frequently.
While antibiotic treatment is effective for some, it’s not a long-term solution for everyone. Some people choose to take probiotics to help manage BV. We‘re going to take a look at what BV is, why probiotics might be useful and how to choose the best probiotics for BV.
Are you ready? Let’s delve deeper down south!
What Are Probiotics?
This is the general name for a group of various different types of helpful, naturally occuring bacteria. Ideally, they’re found in large numbers in the body―particularly in the digestive system, and for women, in the vagina.
Probiotics play a vital role in good digestion, a healthy immune system and in vaginal health. One review of research on probiotics published in medical journal ISRN Nutrition indicates that these friendly bacteria improve intestinal health, prevent diarrhoea, reduce cholesterol levels, improve lactose breakdown and can prevent some forms of cancer.
In the vagina, BV has been shown to be more likely to occur in low concentrations of some of the bacteria in probiotic supplements, such as Lactobacilli. One scientific review in the journal Clinical Microbiology and Infection suggests that probiotics appear to have a marked positive effect on treating and preventing BV in some clinical trials.
What Is BV?
BV is the more socially acceptable abbreviation for the medical condition bacterial vaginosis. According to Medical News Today, BV is a type of vaginal infection which most commonly affects women from 15 to 44 years of age.
BV happens due to a change in the balance between the different types of bacteria in the vagina. We already know it’s linked with a reduced number of Lactobacilli bacteria, but experts haven’t as yet been able to identify the exact cause.
What research studies can tell us is that the risk of BV is increased by having multiple partners, smoking and douching.
If you’re worried that you or a family member may have BV, below is a link to an informative video about how to prevent, identify and manage BV:
Symptoms of BV
Initial symptoms of BV are often confused with other conditions, such as a urinary tract infection. Correct diagnosis of any genito-urinary problem is essential.
Common symptoms of BV include thin gray or white discharge with a strong, unpleasant odor―often compared to a fishy smell that can be more noticeable after intercourse. Itching sensations around the vaginal area can be strong and very uncomfortable, and some people feel burning when they pass urine.
In UpToDate research, a large proportion of people have no symptoms at all―this figure could be as high as 75 percent. So even if you don’t have symptoms, watching out for BV during regular screening is desirable.
What Are the Best Probiotics for BV?
With the US spending over $36 billion on nutritional supplements in 2017, there are a lot of companies producing hundreds of different products. So how to choose the best probiotics for BV?
Well that just got a whole lot easier, because we’ve done all the work for you! Here’s our top five selected best probiotics for BV, with all their positives and drawbacks neatly laid out to make your decision a cinch!
Bacterial vaginosis, or BV, can be an extremely unpleasant and distressing condition that can be tough to banish permanently. Research has highlighted probiotics supplements as being effective in both treating and avoiding the recurrence of BV.
Several people reported that this probiotic was far more effective than several others they’d tried. In addition, the excellent price—a small fraction of the cost of the most expensive supplement—makes it our top choice as the best probiotics for BV.