One of the drawbacks to living the ho life is that, sometimes, the vagina gets out of whack. I’ve been single for over six months now, so I had a pretty good run without issues, but it couldn’t last forever. That’s how I came to wake up one morning to that familiar dread: BV is back. I’m super lucky that I work in a building that also houses a women’s health center (read: abortion clinic), so I can just pop down there on my lunch break for an exam, but still, doctors are expensive and you can’t have sex for a week, so it’s definitely best to avoid the situation.
BV (bacterial vaginosis) is a common vaginal infection that is easily treated with antibiotics. It’s not sexually transmitted, but it is often caused by having new or varied sexual partners, as it exposes the vagina to a variety of bacteria. Interestingly, I just recently learned from my doctor that it’s most often caused by oral sex, not vaginal. Human mouths are all kinds of nasty, and sometimes the bacteria from the giver’s mouth enters the receiver’s vagina and runs wild. It’s normal and not a cause for any major concern, but it is a pain (sometimes literally).
I’m not gonna go into full gross-out mode by listing symptoms and stuff, because there’s a whole internet out there for that. I’m just offering some tips that will hopefully aid prevention.
- Wash your vulva and vagina after sex. Even/especially oral sex. Most likely you’re gonna pee to prevent a UTI anyway, so you might as well give the vag a quick once-over wipedown.
- Take probiotics and eat yogurt. Live and active cultures make the vagina happy. You can also shove unsweetened, unflavored yogurt up there, though it feels kinda yuck.
- Only use good lube. Did you know that many popular brands put sugar in their lubes? SUGAR. Like I get that it’s gotta taste decent, but if you put sugar in a vagina, you’re gonna have a bad time.
- If you’re using condoms, check to see that they don’t have a spermicidal coating. Spermicide can mess with vaginal pH. Having said that, it does help to additionally prevent pregnancy, so you gotta pick your battles with this one.
- Use boric acid suppositories if you feel like the symptoms are starting. DO NOT swallow them, as they are highly toxic. Insert only. You can buy them online, or buy boric acid powder and empty capsules to make your own if you’re feeling DIY.
- Please, for the love of god, don’t douche.
I hope this helps! A healthy vagina is a happy vagina! Keep on ho-ing!