The majority of women experience feminine issues, including unpleasant odor, at least occasionally. Even if you realize it happens to almost everyone, it doesn’t make it less embarrassing; it can lower self-esteem and make you feel unclean, even if that isn’t the reality.
Here is a look at what that odor might be trying to tell you, as well as how you can address it and stay fresh naturally.
Bacterial Vaginosis (BV) can cause itching, soreness and discharge, and is the most common reason for a vaginal infection. Each vagina has naturally occurring bacteria, but in this condition there is an overgrowth of the bacteria. There are “good” bacteria, which serve to control the growth of “bad” bacteria, and in BV, the balance is upset because there aren’t enough of the good bacteria and there is too much of the bad bacteria.
It can be caused by unprotected sex, frequent douching or even smoking. Medical treatment usually involves a course of antibiotics, but there are natural treatments that are also worth trying such as:
Tea tree oil. Tea tree oil also offers strong antifungal properties; mix 2-3 tablespoons of tea tree oil into a small bowl of water. Use the solution to rinse your vagina; it will also help to remove any unpleasant odor.
Apple cider vinegar. Soak in a bathtub filled with water and one cup apple cider vinegar for about 20 minutes; the vinegar helps to kill the bacteria that cause BV.
A yeast infection is also quite common and uncomfortable. The symptoms are similar to BV, in addition to the presence of a thick, white discharge. Yeast is a fungus that normally lives in the vagina in small numbers, when an infection is present it means that too many yeast cells are growing.
Certain health issues, like diabetes, can cause an imbalance as well as taking antibiotics, undergoing hormone replacement therapy, or being pregnant, due to higher estrogen levels.
A yeast infection doesn’t normally require antibiotics, but sometimes an oral antifungal treatment is prescribed.
Change your diet. Follow a yeast-free diet which eliminates dairy, sugar and white flour as well as yeast breads and foods that contain vinegar. It’s always a good idea to avoid processed foods and eat plenty of fresh organic fruits and vegetables which can help boost immunity and fight chronic infections.
Garlic. Garlic can also help fight and prevent a yeast infection. Eat 1 to 2 cloves a day; chopped raw garlic can be sprinkled onto salads or you can eat them on their own.
Judy Cohain, CNM says that a clove of garlic can stop a yeast infection in its tracks. She recommends placing one unwrapped clove of garlic inside of the vagina at night and removing it in the morning. This should be done at the first sign of a yeast infection. One treatment may be enough to remedy the infection, or it may need to be repeated again.
Probiotics. Taking probiotics can help suppress yeast growth. For those with chronic infections, the friendly bacteria in probiotics will colonize the vagina with beneficial bacteria to reduce the chance of further recurrence.
Sexually transmitted diseases
Some STDs, like chlamydia and gonorrhea can cause feminine odor; these diseases are easy to treat but can cause serious health issues if allowed to go untreated. Medical treatment includes a course of antibiotics; there are natural options, but it’s important to see a healthcare provider to ensure the disease has been eradicated if you decide to go that route.
Garlic. Once again, it’s garlic to the rescue. The herb is also the most potent home remedy for treating chlamydia and gonorrhea. Eat at least 1 to 2 cloves per day, preferably more, in order to maximize its antibacterial properties.
Along with garlic treatment, be sure to follow a healthy diet filled with lots of organic produce as well as coconut oil.
Remember, a nutritious diet and an overall healthy lifestyle, as well as safe sex practices, can help decrease the chances of developing any of these conditions and significantly reduce the time it takes to clear them up should they occur.
-The Alternative Daily