Symptoms Like An STD, But Is It Really?

woman worriedThere are a few common vaginal and oral health issues that almost every woman will experience in her lifetime.  Burning during urination, changes in vaginal discharge and certain smells are usually associated with STDs, but the following issues can occur without sexual activity occurring. And during your regular brushing you may see things that may cause alarm, but are not as serious. Here’s what you need to know about these common “women only” issues and how to cure them.

1. Bacterial Vaginosis (BV)

BV or bacterial vaginosis is an infection that occurs commonly in women between the ages of 15-44.  Many women overlook this type of infection when they do have it, mistaking the symptoms for normal vaginal characteristics, but the most distinct symptom of BV is a fishy odor.  Every woman’s vagina has a natural smell due to pheromones and natural body odor, but a fishy odor is an indication that something is off within the vaginal ecosystem.  Doctors aren’t clear on how exactly bacterial vaginosis occurs, but what is understood is that this infection happens when there is an imbalance in the good and bad bacteria within the vagina.  The vaginal ecosystem consists of many different bacteria that protect the cervix, uterus and vaginal walls, but when the “bad” bacteria grows out of control, it throws off the healthy pH level of the vagina, causing a thin, whitish discharge and a fishy smell. Douching, having sex without protection or with certain lubricants, and using bubble baths or bath additives all have an affect on the pH of the vagina that can lead to BV. Women can also sometimes experience BV after the menstrual cycle ends.

Treatment:  Curing BV is as simple as using a course of antibiotics for a period of time either in the form of pills that are taken orally or by inserting the antibiotic in a gel form vaginally.  Avoiding the use of bubble baths and washes that contain perfumes and scents and avoiding douching completely will help with keeping BV away.  Taking a probiotic such as acidophilus or eating yogurt three times a week will help to keep the good bacteria at a healthy level  and will promote a healthy pH level.

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2. Bumps On Your Gums

Periodically, the body changes in order to over compensate for other things that it may need to fight off.  During this time, sometimes those changes occur in the mouth in the form of bumps or excess on your gums or bottom of your teeth.

Treatment: Before you get all up in arms about it, check with your dentist, it may just be plaque build up or a teeth problem. Also, it could be something like a blockage in a salivary duct. Also NOT an STD.  Make sure you are practicing a good oral hygiene routine daily, then see your dentist for any issues.

3. Urinary Tract Infection

Urinary tract infections (UTIs) happen commonly for women because of the shortened urethra that can become…