How To Get Rid of Vaginal Odor: Causes & 8 Effective Home Remedies
Every girl wants to have a healthy and happy vagina. Women understand the importance of fashion, home decors and GOOD HYGIENE.
We don’t just invest in expensive lipsticks and brushes, but we also invest in good feminine hygiene products to feel clean and refreshed.
Vaginal odor is one of the major problems of most women. Feminine hygiene companies and manufacturers take advantage of every woman’s strong urge on how to get rid of bad vaginal odor that’s why there are many feminine wash products available with different scents and packaging.
Before thinking about trying out vaginal odor treatments, let’s discuss some common causes of vaginal odor.
Causes of Vaginal Odor:
- You are what you eat - They say that if you love eating spices such as garlic and onions, you’ll have smelly armpits and a bad breath problem. Your smelly vagina is also affected by the food that you eat. According to research, if you love consuming foods with strong unusual scents such as pepper, garlic, broccoli, onions and cheese, then you’ll surely notice a change in the smell of your vagina. Although some researchers suggest using garlic to treat unwanted vagina odor, instead of eating it, you can try putting fresh garlic inside your vagina for a few minutes. If irritation occurs, then it’s advisable to stop.
- Infection - Women who have bacterial vaginosis tend to have an unpleasant odor. Also known as vaginal bacteriosis, this infection is mostly experienced by women of childbearing age. Having a sexual intercourse with a new partner is one of the reasons of acquiring the infection although it’s not considered a sexually transmitted infection. Yeast infection can lead to discharge, soreness and itching. Your vagina has good and bacteria and it needs balance in order to be healthy.
- Hormones - Your hormones change during ovulation and when you’re having your period. During menopausal stage, you may experience a smelly and watery discharge because your estrogen level is lowered.
- Sweat - When it’s sweaty down there, then expect it to be smelly. Blame your sweat glands and bacteria. Like your armpits, eyelids and ear canals, your vagina also has apocrine sweat glands. Such glands secrete fluid with the presence of bacteria which can cause fishy vaginal smell.
So what makes your vagina happy? Here are eight effective home remedies to get rid of vaginal odor:
1. Apple Cider Vinegar
The presence of bacteria is one of the reasons why there is vaginal odor that’s why you need something with antibacterial and antiseptic properties such as apple cider vinegar.
Apple cider vinegar is one of the best choices to eliminate vaginal odor, either by drinking or having a warm bath. For menopausal women, it’s natural to have low estrogen levels and less acidity.
Apple cider vinegar contains the much needed acidity and antiseptic quality to fight the bacteria.
What to do:
- Mix a glass of water with two tablespoons of apple cider vinegar everyday. If you don’t like the strong taste of vinegar, a tablespoon is okay. Or you can mix it with honey.
- A warm bath can be soothing for your vagina. Try mixing two cups of apple cider vinegar in warm bath water and soak for 20 -25 minutes to kill the bacteria.
2. Tea Tree Oil
Most feminine wash products today contain tea tree oil. Like the apple cider vinegar, it also has antiseptic properties that can help fight off toxins and bacteria.
What to do:
- If you’re a regular tampon user, you can dip it in olive oil and add a few drops of tea tree oil in it.
- For strong vaginal odor, try adding a few drops of tea tree oil to a cup of water whenever you’re washing your genital.
Consuming yogurt is healthy not only for you but for your vagina too! Yogurt has lactobacillus bacteria, a good kind of bacteria that help fight candida infection, considered one of the common reasons of having vaginal odor.
Yogurt is helpful for most women who have low estrogen levels because it helps balance your normal vaginal pH level.
What to do:
- Eat unsweetened plain yogurt everyday. Try probiotic supplements.
- If you don’t like the taste of yogurt, you can try soaking a tampon in your yogurt and insert the tampon in your body. Rinse and remove the tampon after two to three hours.
4. Baking Soda
Baking soda is one of the most common household products that you can easily find in the kitchen. Aside from being used for baking cakes and pies, it’s also used as a cleaning agent to absorb odors by neutralizing pH levels.
Baking soda neutralizes your vaginal pH level, eliminating yeast infection and your unpleasant vaginal smell.
What to do:
- Add one-half cup of baking soda in your warm bath water and enjoy soaking in it for fifteen to twenty minutes.
5. Indian Gooseberry
Apart from its high vitamin C content, the Indian gooseberry is also helpful in getting rid of an unpleasant odor down there. When there is a vaginal discharge, there is a vaginal odor.
Indian gooseberry acts as an organic cleanser and natural blood purifier, helping you stay out of bacteria and other vaginal infections.
What to do:
- Eat it like any regular fruit or try juicing.
One of the causes of vaginal odor is your hormones. Fenugreek actually helps balance your hormones which helps lessen vaginal discharge and its unpleasant odor. Another health benefit is it helps in regulating your irregular menstruation cycle.
What to do:
- Make a herbal tea out of fenugreek seeds. Just boil the seeds, strain them and drink the tea with an empty stomach.
- Soak fenugreek seeds on the water overnight. Strain the seeds and drink the water early in the morning.
7. Citrus and Vitamin C
We are familiar that citrus fruits contain vitamin C. Apart from boosting our immune system, eating citrus fruits is also beneficial in flushing out toxins from your body and fighting infections such as vaginal infections. Bacteria could not survive for so long in body with strong immune system.
What to do:
- Eat grapefruits, pineapples, cranberries, lime, oranges, lemons etc.
Neem is known as an insecticide and its medicinal value should never be underestimated. Neem or Indian lilac can be beneficial to fight vaginal bacteria, which is one of the causes of vaginal odor.
What to do:
- Boil the neem leaves and allow it to cool. Take out the leaves and use the solution to wash your vaginal area.
When to see a doctor?
If you notice that your vaginal odor doesn’t improve after trying out the home remedies mentioned and the burning sensation continues with excessive discharge, then it’s better to see your gynecologist.
Your vagina is one of the most sensitive parts of your body. Your vaginal health depends on how you care for it.
Here are some additional tips to feel fresh and eliminate the fishy odor down there:
Drink plenty of water
Water has many health benefits. Drinking lots of water helps flush out the bad bacteria and the toxins present in your body.
Less bacteria means less infection and no more worries about discharge and vaginal odor. Don’t forget to stay hydrated.
Avoid anything sugary and caffeinated drinks
Candida is a type of yeast infection that causes irritation, itching and unpleasant vaginal odor. Sugary foods and drinks can encourage overgrowth of candida.
You also need to avoid too much pasta and other foods that are rich in carbohydrates because they promote yeast growth.
Avoid using scented feminine wash
Girls are attracted to scented feminine wash products which can do more harm to your vagina. Retain your vagina’s natural scent instead of washing it with scented products to avoid irritation and disrupting its natural pH level.
Wear cotton panties
You perspire in every physical activity that you engage in. You are aware of your sweaty armpits, wet back and your sweaty groin. Cotton fabric panties allow air circulation and absorb your sweat.
Keep your vulva ventilated and avoid moisture as much as possible. Keep your vaginal area clean and dry.
Some girls who want to wear lacy panties agree that wearing them can sometimes be itchy and uncomfortable which leads to irritation and infection.
Wash after sex
Sex can be an exciting activity to be shared with a partner if you don’t suffer from irritation and unpleasant odor afterwards.
Your genital area tends to be wet and moist after sex due to natural secretion and lubrication which may attract bacteria. You can wash it after sex with warm water.
Use warm water instead of soap
Some girls are used to using soap or feminine wash product every time they wash their genitals. Your vagina prefers water instead of soap. Some soaps may cause itching and irritation.
Frequent scratching of your vulva may result to infection which can cause unwanted discharges.
Using soap might disrupt your natural vaginal pH. If you’re not satisfied using water only, then you can try very mild soap to avoid irritation.
Sex is one of the best pleasures of life and you will enjoy it more if your vagina is itchy and redness free. Having unprotected sex with multiple partners can sometimes cause bacteria and infection.
Your bacteria are not familiar with the new bacteria from a new sex partner, which leads to infection. Sex-related infections cause vaginal itching, redness, excessive vaginal discharge and burning sensation during and after intercourse.
Avoid douching too much
Douching can actually get rid of the bad bacteria. However, it can also eliminate the good bacteria. Trust how your body works naturally and just use warm water to wash your vaginal area.
Maintaining your pH level is very important to fight infection. If you need to use white vinegar, baking soda or other essential oils with water, it’s recommended that you don’t do it often.
Study says that too much douching may cause health problems in the future.
Change pads during your period
For most active women who are having their menstruation while at work, they tend to forget changing their sanitary pads from time to time.
The problem with using sanitary pads is that wearing used pads for long hours might cause infection. Why not use a re-usable menstrual cup like the Anigan EvaCup instead?.
Have a balanced diet
What you eat affects your physical and mental health. Although your body needs carbohydrates, too much carbs can also cause yeast growth.
While eating too many sweet oranges and berries or sweet fruits to get vitamin c can attract candida and encourage its growth.
Candida is a type of infection that can cause vaginal irritation, redness and discharge. Yeast is the last thing you want to be with your vagina.
Avoid wearing too tight jeans
Your vagina is sensitive that’s why it needs extra care. Wearing tight jeans prevents proper ventilation of your vagina and groin area.
If you live an active lifestyle, avoid wearing tight clothing because it’s your sweat glands can be the reason why you’re smelly down there. Oxygen is important to have a healthy and happy vagina.
Having a good hygiene routine is important to get rid of your vaginal odor. If you regularly go to the gym, make sure to shower after because being sweaty means having bacteria and being smelly down there.
Take a shower after work and feel refreshed. If you want to use feminine sprays, spray it externally and not internally. However, if possible, try not to use any feminine products that can affect your vagina’s natural pH balance.
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