SEX, SMELLS, & HER STORIES

It's time to get real. Like really real about some things that are hard to talk about—and maybe even hard to think about. But your sex life and intimacy can be greatly affected when something's not quite right with your vagina. So, get ready and read on. We promise it won't be so bad. In fact, you'll probably feel relieved.

ODOR AND INTIMACY

Feminine odor is something every woman experiences at some point. And, when you have sex, the way things smell down there can sometimes leave you feeling self-conscious about your body.1

While we all have our own distinctive smell (which comes from a combination of factors, including the bacteria that naturally reside in your vaginal area, diet, exercise, and even clothing), there are times when you may notice your personal scent has changed.1

When that happens, there may be an underlying health problem. Talk to your healthcare provider about what's happening.

WHAT'S THE WHIFF TEST?

Healthcare professionals often use the Whiff Test to diagnose BV. What the heck is that? Read on.

The test is performed by adding a small amount of a chemical to a microscopic slide of vaginal discharge. If the characteristically fishy smell is present, it is considered a positive test for BV.2

There are also at-home tests you can buy. However, at-home tests are not always reliable. It's best to talk to a healthcare professional instead.3

TALKING TO YOUR PARTNER ABOUT BV

If you think you have BV, following these steps can help make breaking the news a little less nerve-wracking.

STEP 1: BRUSH UP ON YOUR BV FACTS

  • BV can be treated effectively with a prescription from your healthcare provider

STEP 2: SIT THEM DOWN

  • Find a quiet place where you feel comfortable talking
  • Start with the facts:
    • BV is the most common vaginal infection and is caused by an imbalance of bacteria that live naturally in the vagina4
    • BV is NOT an STI or a matter of poor hygiene2
  • If you have a lady lover, she may be at risk for contracting BV. Explain that she should visit a healthcare provider, too.5 Whether your partner is male or female, you will need to abstain from intercourse for a little while. Semen and sex toys can affect your vagina's pH level and lead to an imbalance of bacteria.6
  • Alcohol can interfere with most treatments; better to schedule that party in 10-14 days! Share the length of treatment with your partner so they know when all systems are GO!6

STEP 3: FOLLOW UP WITH PREVENTION

  • Always use condoms to help keep your vagina's pH level within normal limits7
  • Properly clean any sex toys; they can harbor bacteria8

NOW THAT YOU'RE DONE, ENJOY HER AWESOMENESS.

YOU'VE TAKEN THE CORRECT STEPS TO KEEP HER AS HEALTHY AS CAN BE!

TALKING TO YOUR
HEALTHCARE PROVIDER ABOUT BV

Do you feel nervous about discussing your symptoms with a healthcare professional? The next time you schedule a visit, download the Discussion Guide and arm yourself with these tips.

BEFORE YOUR VISIT9

Make a list of any symptoms you're experiencing

Include all symptoms—even if you don't think they're related

Make a list of any medications, vitamins, herbs, or supplements you take

Include how often you take them and the doses

Make sure to:

  • Avoid using tampons
  • Not douche or use vaginal deodorant sprays
  • Not have sex 24 hours before your appointment

DURING YOUR VISIT9

Keep in mind, you can talk to your healthcare provider about anything you feel unsure of. But if you're not so sure what to ask, these are a few important questions.

  • What causes BV?
  • Can I do anything to prevent BV?
  • What signs and symptoms should I look for?
  • What treatment options are available?
  • Are there special instructions for taking the treatment?
  • Is BV an STI, and does my partner need to know?
  • Will my partner need to be tested or treated?
  • Is it safe to have sex if I have BV?
  • When can I expect relief from my symptoms?
  • What can I do if my symptoms return after treatment?

Remember, you're not alone! BV is a common infection.10 In fact, it's the most common vaginal infection for women between the ages of 14 and 49 (affecting 21 million women in the U.S. annually). BV can be a bummer—but with the right diagnosis and prescription, BV is treatable.4

68% OF WOMEN WITH BV FEEL
SELF-CONSCIOUS

and/or 66% feel embarrassed due to their condition.11*

*SURVEY METHODOLOGY

Survey conducted online by Harris Poll on behalf of Symbiomix Therapeutics, LLC, a Lupin Company and the American Sexual Health Association (ASHA) within the United States between September 14 and 29, 2017 among 304 US women aged 18-49 who have been diagnosed by a healthcare professional with bacterial vaginosis (BV) within the past 2 years ("women with bacterial vaginosis"). Figures for age, income, race/ethnicity, region, education, and size of household were weighted where necessary to bring them into line with their actual proportions in the population.11

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