Are you experiencing vaginal itching, abnormal vaginal discharge, and foul smell during urination? You must be aware that all of these symptoms can be a sign of vaginal pH disturbance. In the vagina, the pH value can vary for reasons such as unprotected sex, vaginal douching, and other reasons. Keep reading to find out more about vaginal pH and how to restore pH balance in the vag naturally.
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What Is Normal Vaginal pH?
To understand the normal pH balance of the vagina, you must have to get a complete knowledge of pH and its importance in maintaining desirable body conditions.
The pH scale, ranging from 0 to 14, measures the pH values of different substances or body parts. The values on the pH scale below 7 are acidic and above 7 are alkaline. The exact 7 value shows the neutral nature of the substance.
Every body part must have its unique pH value, at which its normal metabolisms and enzymatic actions proceed. Any minute change in pH often causes enzymes’ denaturation, causing abnormal body functioning. The same goes for the vagina.
The normal pH balance for the vagina ranges between 3.8 and 4.5. It indicates that the vagina is acidic in nature. The low pH value of the vagina is due to the presence of lactic acid. There are Lactobacillus bacteria present in the vagina that release this lactic acid along with hydrogen peroxide.
This acidic nature protects the vagina from the growth of harmful bacteria. When vaginal pH becomes alkaline for any reason, it promotes the development of unhealthy bacteria. This can lead to vaginal infections such as bacterial vaginosis with different symptoms.
What Causes Vaginal pH Balance To Vary?
The normal pH value of the vagina can vary due to several reasons. Let’s look at what causes the pH balance to be off before going for its treatment.
Overconsumption Of Antibiotics
Antibiotics are the drugs that are usually consumed to kill the bacteria causing infection in the body. But when taken in excess, antibiotics can also prohibit the growth of naturally occurring required bacteria in the body. It can also inhibit the growth of Lactobacillus bacteria in the vagina, thus reducing lactic acid production and leading to alkalinity.
Unprotected or frequent sex leads to variation in the vaginal pH value. Semen or seminal fluid released by male gonads is alkaline, with pH values ranging from 7.1 to 8. This alkaline pH causes the vaginal pH to vary from acidic to alkaline nature. It further leads to the growth of harmful bacteria in the vagina.
It involves the use of a stream of water for the cleansing of the vagina. This cleaning can also wash out beneficial bacteria and other impurities from the vagina. Removing vaginal bacteria further causes the pH of the vagina to increase.
Vaginal dryness also causes variations in vaginal pH value. This dryness can be due to many reasons, such as fluctuation in sex hormones, stress, childbirth, surgical removal of ovaries, anti-estrogen drugs, smoking, and other underlying reasons.
Menstruation can also be a reason for the increase in the pH value of the vagina. The blood passing out of the vagina causes the acidity of the vagina to drop. Using pads or tampons can also result in an abnormal vaginal pH.
It is a vaginal infection caused by the overgrowth of bacteria in the vagina. It commonly results in vaginal inflammation, foul smelling, and abnormal vaginal discharge. All these symptoms can be signs of change in the vaginal environment.
What Are The Symptoms Of Vaginal pH Imbalance?
There are many symptoms or signs which indicate a disturbance in your vaginal pH. Some of these prominent vaginal pH imbalance symptoms are given below:
- Abnormal discharge from the vagina can be of green or yellow color.
- Foul or unpleasant smell from the vagina
- Itching or soreness in the vagina or vulva
- Burning sensation during urination
- Thick and chunky vaginal discharge.
If you are experiencing any of these vaginal symptoms, you should go for home remedies or medical attention for pH restoration.
How To Check The Variation In pH Of The Vagina?
Vaginal pH test kits are easily available in the market. You just have to place the strip of paper out of the kit against the wall of the vagina. After a few seconds, the color will appear on this strip. Comparing this color with the pH chart will help you find the vaginal pH value. Before performing this test, you must be careful about the instructions mentioned in the kit. You can also recommend your gynecologist measure the vaginal pH value.
7 Best Tips On How To Restore pH Balance In Vag Naturally?
There are many natural and medicinal ways to restore the acidic environment of the vagina. You will find here the methods that will solve your confusion, how to restore pH value in vag.
Increase Your Probiotic Consumption
Maintaining the normal level of vaginal bacteria is necessary to restore its pH. It can be done by using probiotics or useful microorganisms in your diet. There are many naturally occurring food or fermented food, such as yogurt, pickles, buttermilk, sourdough bread, and Kefir(fermented dairy drink), which contain a considerable culture of Lactobacillus.
Besides natural food, you can also go for probiotics supplements and suppositories. Supplements are taken orally, and suppositories are ingested intravaginally. Healthy bacteria taken through food may not be able to inhibit the growth of bad bacteria; they only boost the culture of good bacteria in the vagina. Due to this reason, taking probiotics in a medicinal way can be a more relieving option.
An increased dietary fiber intake helps maintain the required culture of bacteria in the body. Further, probiotics are totally safe to consume; they do not cause any side effects in the vagina and the overall body.
Use Boric Acid Suppositories
With its antiseptic properties, Boric acid can be the best option for restoring vaginal pH. If the symptoms show that the vagina’s pH is slightly changed, you should use boric acid suppositories instead of antibiotics.
You can buy these suppositories from any local pharmacy. To apply these suppositories, use an applicator and put boric acid suppositories in the vagina. After applying suppositories, wash your hands thoroughly.
Increase Your Garlic Intake
Garlic is famous worldwide due to its remarkable anti-bacterial and antifungal properties. Due to these properties, garlic is also considered beneficial for vaginal health.
Antioxidants are also present in a rich amount of garlic. These antioxidants prevent the vagina from several infections and restore the acidic vaginal environment. You can increase the intake of garlic simply through the diet. Garlic supplements are also a good option for increasing antibacterial and antioxidant abilities.
Before consuming garlic, one must remember that garlic overconsumption can negatively impact the effectiveness of other medications, cause gastrointestinal disorders, and have some other side effects.
Reduce Your Mental Stress
Mental stress causes fluctuation in the body’s hormonal level. The cortisol level, a steroid hormone released by adrenal glands, is strongly affected due to anxiety, depression, and stress. This cortisol fluctuation results in the variation of vaginal pH.
To restore vaginal pH, always try to go with the habits that give you pleasure and reduce stress. Taking a healthy diet, regular exercise, getting proper sleep and avoiding alcohol, smoking, and harmful drugs are always the best options for maintaining mental health.
Exercises boost the brain’s production of endorphins, neurotransmitters responsible for positive vibes. Any physical activities such as yoga can also help reduce stress. Similarly, all other activities mentioned above maintain the normal hormonal level and restore vaginal pH.
Wear Breathable, Cotton Underwear
You must be interested to learn about how to restore the pH balance in vag quickly by adopting just a single hygienic habit. You must be careful about the underwear you use to maintain the vaginal pH. Most of the underwear available in the market is made of synthetic fabrics, which usually trap sweat, causing moisture in the vaginal area. It allows bacteria to grow and disturb the vaginal acidic environment.
Changing underwear after swimming is always a good idea to prevent this moisture. Cotton and porous underwears are always suitable for vaginal health. Further, wash your underwear with hypoallergenic detergents instead of regular soap.
Go For Protected Sex
Semen is alkaline. Unprotected sex causes excessive exposure of the vagina to semen. Semen’s alkaline nature can disturb the pH value of the vagina. It also increases the risk of vaginal infection.
One must use a protective barrier, such as condoms, during sex. It prevents semen alkaline exposure to the vagina and reduces the risk of infection. You can buy sex protective barriers through any local pharmacy near you.
Avoid Douching And Some Other Vaginal Cleansings
Remember that the vagina is always a self-cleaning part of the body. The bacterial culture naturally present in the vagina prevents the growth of microorganisms and reduces the risk of vaginal discharge.
Further, the sex hormones, namely estrogen, maintain the health of the vagina by promoting the vaginal epithelial cells’ multiplication. It also enhances the storage of glycogen. Glycogen presence always favors the growth of lactobacillus, which converts this glycogen into lactic acid. Thus, maintaining an acidic environment reduces the chances of developing infectious microorganisms.
Still, many women wear douching and scented tampons to clean the vulva and vagina. This can disturb the growth of healthy bacteria and disturb the pH of the vagina. So, avoiding scented soaps, douches, and fragrant tampons is always the best option to restore the vaginal acidic environment.
When To Go For Medical Attention?
You should go to your gynecologist when experiencing severe symptoms of vaginal pH disturbance. These conditions may involve:
- Lower abdominal or pelvic pain
- Severe burning or itching around the vagina or vulva
- Heavy abnormal discharge
- Home remedies are not reducing the symptoms of disturbed vaginal pH.
- Other vaginal symptoms develop frequently or may with more intensity.
People often ask how to restore the pH balance in the vag through medications. Gynecologists usually prescribe you some antibiotics after going thoroughly through your symptoms. Let’s look at which antibiotics are normally prescribed to restore the acidic vaginal environment.
|Antibiotics||How To Use?|
|Clindamycin||This antibiotic is available in the market in two dosage forms: suppositories and creams. Suppositories must be inserted in the vagina once a day, and treatment should be continued for at least three to four days. Creams, on the other hand, are easy to use. But, you have to use it for a longer duration, maybe up to a week, to get proper recovery.|
|Metronidazole||is also available in two forms, including pills and gels. You just have to apply this vaginal gel as a topical drug. When going for metronidazole pills, avoid alcoholic consumption.|
|Tinidazole||This antibiotic is available in the oral dosage form. Take this medication according to your doctor’s advice and avoid alcohol consumption to reduce the risk of side effects.|
How To Prevent The Vaginal pH Imbalance?
A vagina is a self-cleaning and self-protecting part of the body. A female will never experience variation in the acidity of the vagina if she maintains a hygienic and healthy vaginal environment. To prevent an increase in vaginal pH, simply follow these steps:
- Drink a lot of water. It will help to remove the toxins causing the increase in vaginal ph out of the body. Dehydration can cause an increased risk of infections in the vagina.
- Avoid excess intake of sugar. More sugar concentration in the blood causes the yeast to grow and disrupt the vaginal pH. You must limit your intake of products having high glycemic values.
- Avoid douching and use of scented products in the vaginal area. Go with cotton and breathable underwear. Avoid any kind of moisture in the area around the vagina.
- Using protective barriers to prevent sexually transmitted diseases. Protective barriers will prevent the excess exposure of the vagina to alkaline semen.
Experiencing uncomfortable symptoms in the vagina, like unpleasant odor, unusual discharge, pain, swelling, or rash, can be embarrassing. Still, it is normal for your pH balance to fluctuate, which happens to most people at some point. However, do not allow embarrassment to prevent you from seeking proper medical care or trying natural remedies to restore pH balance.
Can A Man Throw Off A Woman's pH Balance?
A man’s bodily fluids can potentially disrupt a woman’s pH balance, as semen has a pH of around 7.1-8.0, and the vaginal pH is typically around 3.8-4.5. However, this can be easily corrected using over-the-counter products such as vaginal gels or suppositories.
How To Restore pH Balance In Vag Quickly?
To restore the pH balance in the vagina quickly, you can use over-the-counter products such as vaginal gels or suppositories. These products can help to restore the natural acidity of the vagina. Additionally, practicing good hygiene and avoiding harsh soaps or douches can help maintain a healthy pH balance.
Is It Good To Use Bleach In Bath Water For pH Balance?
It is not recommended to use bleach in bath water for pH balance. Bleach is a strong chemical that can irritate the skin and cause other health problems. Instead, you can use baking soda to adjust the pH of the bath water. Baking soda is a mild, safe, and effective way to raise the pH level of bath water.
The information contained in this post is for educational purposes only. Always consult your primary care doctor before using the remedies that are provided. The information is provided by The Hidden Cures and while we do timely, in-depth research on the information that we provide to you, everything stated may not be up to date or accurate from the time it was written.