As mentioned previously, the exact causes of bacterial vaginosis aren’t fully understood, so there’s no sure way of completely preventing it from happening. In short, every woman has a risk of developing this condition. However, there are some precautions you can take to lower that risk, such as:1
• Avoid Using Scented Soaps
Scented soaps may contain harsh chemicals that can irritate your vaginal area and cause a bacterial reaction. The same goes for other scented products, such as perfumed bubble baths. Instead, use triclosan- and fragrance-free soap to help prevent an imbalance from occurring.
• Douching Is Not Recommended
Despite what you see and hear on advertisements, douching is not recommended. Flushing your vagina with water will disrupt the healthy bacterial balance and cause the bad bacteria to take over.
• Practice Safe Sex
The risk of getting bacterial vaginosis is higher when you’re sexually active, but there are certain things you can do to protect yourself, such as having your male partner use a condom. In addition, you should limit the number of your sex partners or abstain from intercourse altogether.
Not only will this help reduce your risk of bacterial vaginosis, but sexually transmitted diseases as well.
• Proper Toilet Hygiene
It’s important to wash your anus and vagina every day to keep harmful bacteria away. Wiping from front to back after urination and defecation will also help prevent harmful bacteria from entering the vagina.2
• Consume a Balanced Diet
Eat food rich in probiotics, vitamins and minerals to help boost your immune system and increase your body’s ability to repel harmful bacteria. Here are more useful healthy eating tips that can help prevent bacterial vaginosis.
Regularly Follow up With Your Doctor
Due to various factors such as hormones, diet, sexual activity, pregnancy and the environment, it’s quite possible for bacterial vaginosis to return once it has been treated. In fact, up to 70 percent of women have repeat episodes of bacterial vaginosis. However, it’s not fully understood how this infection happens. It’s possible that an environmental factor disrupted the bacterial balance, or you failed to adequately reseed your vaginal flora with probiotics.3
In any case, you should schedule regular visits with your doctor during and after treating your bacterial vaginosis. This will help you explore other treatment methods should your current ones fail to work.