ACOG (American Congress of Obstetrics and Gynecology) reports that around 9 out of every 10 women experience an unusual vaginal odor at least once in their lifetime. The ACOG states that feminine odor changes throughout your normal monthly menstrual cycle, and is subject to outside situations such as the presence of bacteria, foods that you eat, or hormonal functions. Vaginal odor to a certain degree is absolutely normal!
Vaginal odor is an embarrassing problem that can hugely affect your self confidence. Moreover, vaginal infections also affect the quality of your sex life. Vaginal odor can be a tough problem for both partners in a relationship. It can be embarrassing for the female, and frustrating for the male. Vaginal odor will affect almost every woman at some time in her life.
Understanding vaginal odors symptoms and causes can help you identify whether there is a need to see a physician right away, or whether you should look for natural methods to treat at home.
Symptoms of vaginal odor
- A kind of metallic smell comes from the vagina.
- Often the odor may also smell like fish.
- Itchy feeling in the vagina.
- Burning sensation in the vagina.
Causes of vaginal odor
Vaginal odor is almost always associated with an infection. There are several causes of vaginal odor but 95% of vaginal odor is caused by an infection that causes bacterial vaginosis (BV).
Even unprotected sex which can lead to sexually transmitted disease (STD) can also be the cause behind vaginal odor. Eating spicy foods and taking certain medications can also result in an unpleasant odor. Even something as simple as a new detergent for washing your underwear can cause itching, irritation, and vaginal odor. Shaving the hair around your vagina can also result in a strong odor as it will irritate the region and cause it to itch. Some other contributing factors include pregnancy, smoking, use of contraceptives in improper procedures.
Some easy ways to get rid vaginal odor
If you are looking for ways to get rid of vaginal odor, then you will be happy to know that there exist several solutions.
- Avoid douching the vagina as it can cause irritation. Douching can alter the balance of healthy bacteria in your vagina, causing other bacteria to grow and create a foul vaginal odor.
- Avoid using fragrant body washes and soaps as such products contain too many chemicals and fragrances that can actually make your vagina produce more discharge that gives off the unpleasant odor.
- Washing your vagina with warm water and a mild soap can also resolve the problem to a great extent.
- Choose cotton underwear as panty hose and any synthetic material will block air flow to your vaginal area. Loose cotton garments will give the region more ventilation, which will help get rid of vaginal odor. Also try to change your underwear every single day.
- Also try to wear a panty liner. A thin, scented panty liner can absorb vaginal discharge and sweat and thus help a lot to get rid of the unpleasant odor.
- Make it a habit to include fresh fruits and leafy vegetables in your daily diet. Within a few weeks the problem of vaginal odor will be resolved. At the same time avoid spicy and starchy foods, and alcohol and caffeinated beverages as such items can increase the amount of yeast in your vagina and thus worsening your condition.
- Drink eight to ten glasses of water daily to keep your body well hydrated body and to keep your body free from bad toxins and harmful bacteria.
- Before and after having sex, wash the genital area in order to keep the area clean and to avoid infection.
- During menstruation, change the bandage after 3-4 hours or if it is wet. Avoid using tampons because it is unhygienic and can spread bacteria or promote the growth of bacteria in the vagina.
Natural solutions to get to rid of vaginal odor
There are many easy solutions to treat vaginal odor at home with the help of easily available ingredients from your kitchen.
- Regular consumption of fenugreek helps to balance the body hormones, promotes regular menstrual cycles and keeps the inner body system healthy. All these factors help to reduce vaginal odor.
- Yogurt contains lactobacillus which helps to restore the normal vaginal pH level. With balanced pH level there can never be the problem of vaginal odor. Try to eat at least two cups of unsweetened, plain yogurt daily.
- White vinegar can neutralize odors and so when suffering from vaginal odor you must try white vinegar rinse. Add half cup of white vinegar and salt to your lukewarm bath water and soak yourself in it for a few minutes.
- Garlic, a kind of natural antibiotic can also help to deal with vaginal odor. Just eat garlic in raw or cooked form on an empty stomach with one glass of warm water daily for one or two weeks.
- The natural anti-bacterial property present in apple cider vinegar can also be used in the treatment of vaginal odor. In a bath tub, add some warm water and apple cider vinegar and use it to take a long bath and soon the problem will be solved.
When trying to deal with vaginal odor, you must follow some of the above mentioned tips. Also try to have patience and follow the tips religiously for a few weeks in order to see positive results. However, if you notice a sudden change in your vaginal odor, which is accompanied with pain and discomfort – you may need to seek medical attention.