FEMININE ODOR, BV, AND INTIMACY

Learn about a BV Treatment

It's time to get real. Like really real about something that you may be self-conscious about. But your sex life can be greatly affected when something's not quite right with your vagina, so it's important to have a realistic approach to intimacy, your feminine health, feminine odor, and a BV diagnosis. We promise it won't be so bad. In fact, you'll probably feel relieved.

WHAT SHE SMELLS LIKE

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

It's important to know that a vagina shouldn't be totally odorless or smell like flowers. That kind of thinking can lead to unhealthy habits. 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), but 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.

No, the whiff test isn't what happens when your physician gets a whiff of body odor during an exam. The test is performed by adding a small amount of a chemical to a microscopic slide of vaginal discharge. The chemical will react with the discharge if certain infections are present and produce a characteristically fishy smell.2 This test is part of a set of criteria physicians use when they're trying to diagnose BV.

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 an antibiotic prescription from a healthcare professional.4

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 in adult women and is caused by an imbalance of bacteria that live naturally in the vagina.4
    • 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 or other sexual activity for a little while or make sure you're using condoms correctly.6 Semen can affect your vagina's pH level and lead to an imbalance of bacteria.7
  • Alcohol can interfere with several common treatments, so you may need to delay the party for several days while you're taking medication. Share the length of treatment with your partner so they know why you'll be turning down that glass of wine.6

STEP 3: FOLLOW UP WITH PREVENTION8

  • Always use condoms to help reduce your risk of BV
  • Avoid douching; it's associated with a higher risk of BV

NOW THAT YOU'RE DONE, ENJOY HER AWESOMENESS. YOU'VE TAKEN SMART 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.4 In fact, it affects 21 million women in the U.S. annually.10 BV can be a bummer—but with the right diagnosis and prescription, BV is treatable.4

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*

TALK TO YOUR HEALTHCARE PROVIDER

Take charge of your treatment plan! Get a helpful guide with questions to ask and ways to prepare for a visit with your healthcare provider.

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