If you're like most women, you probably don't think about your vaginal health until there's a problem, and by then, it's often too late. The good news is that there are steps you can take to help maintain your vaginal health and prevent problems from occurring in the first place.
In this blog post, we will discuss the benefits of using vaginal health probiotics and recommend some of the best products on the market.
Before we begin, here is what you need to know about vaginal probiotics:
- They are amazing for a healthy vagina.
- They help prevent infections like UTI's, BV, and yeast infections.
- Some of the most popular strains of probiotics include lactobacilli bacteria, like Lactobacillus acidophilus, Lactobacillus rhamnosus, and Lactobacillus reuteri.
- The probiotic should contain 100 billion CFU (colony-forming units) per dose.
What is vaginal health?
Vaginal health is a state of balance between the good and bad bacteria in your vagina. This balance is important for maintaining vaginal pH, preventing infections, and keeping your vagina healthy overall. Like your digestive tract, your vaginal area is loaded with helpful bacteria and other microbes.
More than 50 different species of tiny organisms (called microbes) live inside your vagina. Most of these microbes are called lactobacilli. These are the bacteria that help keep the vagina free of infection and healthy in general.
Probiotics are an awesome tool to maintain health in the vagina to prevent problems from happening. Often times we forget to take good care of our vaginas until problems arise, but what does it mean to have an "unhealthy" vagina?
How do I know when my vagina is "unhealthy"?
A lack of lactobacilli, or the bacteria that keep your vagina healthy, can cause an imbalance in your vagina. An imbalance can be caused by the following:
- Having unprotected sex with a male partner
- Changing hormones
- Lack of good hygiene
There are a few signs that can indicate an imbalance in your vaginal flora. These include vaginal dryness, itching, burning, or unusual discharge (learn more about vaginal discharge here). When there is a lack of beneficial bacteria and an excess of harmful bacteria, your vagina can become unhealthy and imbalanced.
If you experience any of these symptoms, it's important to see your doctor so they can determine the cause and recommend treatment.
Some signs of an unhealthy vagina may include a yeast infection, Bacterial Vaginosis, or UTIs (which technically happen in the urethra).
Vaginal Yeast Infection
A yeast infection is caused by an overgrowth of a fungus called candida albicans, which is a type of yeast that naturally occurs in your vagina.
Approximately 75 percent of all women will get a yeast infection in their lifetime. This can be caused by a number of things, including taking antibiotics, douching, or having a weakened immune system.
A good vaginal health probiotic can do the trick in helping prevent and rid you of yeast infections.
Read all about yeast infections in our blog post, "Yeast Infections: Everything You Need to Know."
Bacterial Vaginosis (BV)
Bacterial vaginosis (BV) is the most common vaginal infection in women of childbearing age. It occurs when there is an overgrowth of bad bacteria in the vagina. This can be caused by several things, including douching, having unprotected sex, or not washing your vagina properly.
BV is often characterized by a fishy odor and an increase in vaginal discharge. If you experience these symptoms, it's important to see your doctor so they can prescribe treatment. In the meantime, you can use a vaginal health probiotic to help prevent and treat BV.
Urinary tract infections (UTIs) are caused by bacteria that enter the urinary system through the urethra and multiply in the bladder. Women are more prone to UTIs than men because their urethras are shorter. These are detectible by urination pain, change in color or smell of urine, and pelvic pain.
If you think you have a UTI, it's important to see your doctor so they can prescribe antibiotics. In the meantime, you can use a vaginal health probiotic to help prevent and treat UTIs.
What are vaginal health probiotics?
Vaginal health probiotics are live bacteria that help maintain the healthy balance of microorganisms in your vagina. These probiotics can be taken orally or vaginally, and they work by introducing good bacteria to the vagina to crowd out bad bacteria and yeast, thereby preventing infections.
The best vaginal probiotics
Vaginal health probiotics are a great way to keep your vagina healthy and free from infection. To keep the vaginal bacteria healthy and stabilized, a delicate balance is required.
Choose a product that contains multiple strains of bacteria and use it according to the instructions on the package. With regular use, you can help prevent vaginal infections and keep your vagina healthy!
There are many different types of vaginal health probiotics on the market, and they all contain different strains of live bacteria. Some of the most popular strains include lactobacilli bacteria, like L. rhamnosus and L. reuteri, and L. acidophilus.
What to look for in a vaginal probiotic
When selecting a vaginal probiotic supplement, it's important to choose one that contains multiple strains of bacteria. This will help ensure that you're getting the most benefits possible. Additionally, make sure the product you choose is designed for vaginas.
When selecting a vaginal health probiotic, look for one that contains at least one billion CFUs (colony-forming units) per dose.
5 recommended vaginal probiotic brands to use:
Some of the best vaginal health probiotics on the market include:
RepHresh Pro-B Probiotic Feminine Supplement
- #1 trusted brand
- Oral supplement form
- On Amazon and at Walmart
- Contains L. rhamnosus and L. reuteri
- Does not contain dairy, egg, fish, peanut, gluten, or soy
- 5 billion CFU
- Starts to work in 7 days
- Great reviews
Vaginal Health Probiotic by Jarrow Formulas
- Oral supplement form
- Contains L. rhamnosus and L. reuteri
- 5 billion CFU
Garden of Life- Raw Probiotics Vaginal Care
- 50 or 100 billion CFU!
- 38 probiotic strains
- Oral supplement form
VH Essentials Vaginal Probiotic Suppositories
- Vaginal suppository form
- pH balanced
- Reusable applicator
Renew Life Ultimate Flora Vaginal Care Probiotic
- 90 billion CFU
- 12 probiotic strains
- Vegetarian capsules
Why do I need a vaginal health probiotic?
If you have a history of yeast infections, bacterial vaginosis, or other vaginal infections, taking a vaginal health probiotic can help prevent these problems from recurring. Vaginal health probiotics can also help to prevent these infections in women who are prone to them.
Additionally, if you are taking antibiotics, a vaginal health probiotic can help to replenish the good bacteria that are killed off by the medication.
Finally, vaginal health probiotics can help to relieve the symptoms of Vaginal Atrophy, which is a condition that can occur during menopause. Vaginal Atrophy is characterized by thinning and inflammation of the vaginal walls, as well as dryness, itching, and burning.
Benefits of vaginal health probiotics
There are many benefits to using vaginal health probiotics. Probiotics are live bacteria that can provide numerous health benefits, including:
- Restoring the balance of good and bad bacteria in your vagina
- Reducing vaginal odor
- Relieving vaginal itching and dryness
- Preventing Urinary Tract Infections (UTIs)
- Reducing the risk of vaginal Yeast Infections, treating Bacterial Vaginosis (BV), and relieving symptoms of Vaginal Atrophy
- Preventing postmenopausal vaginal infections
- Improving vaginal and urinary health
How to use vaginal health probiotics
Vaginal health probiotics are available in many forms, including capsules, tablets, suppositories, creams, and powders. You can find them at most pharmacies and health food stores.
When choosing a vaginal health probiotic, it's important to select one that contains multiple strains of bacteria. Additionally, make sure the product you choose is designed for vaginas specifically.
Vaginal probiotic supplements
Vaginal probiotic supplements are designed to be taken orally. They typically come in the form of capsules or tablets that you take once or twice per day.
When taking a vaginal probiotic supplement, it's important to follow the instructions on the package. Some products need to be refrigerated, while others do not.
To use a vaginal capsule or tablet:
Start by inserting the capsule or tablet into the vagina before going to bed. For best results, leave it in overnight. In the morning, remove the capsule or tablet and discard it.
To use a vaginal suppository:
To use vaginal suppositories, insert the suppository into the vagina before going to bed. For best results, leave it in overnight. In the morning, remove the suppository and discard it.
Some vaginal probiotic suppositories are not regulated by the FDA, so it's important to do your research before selecting a product.
To use a vaginal cream:
Apply the cream to your finger and insert it into the vagina. Gently massage the cream into the vaginal walls for a few minutes. Repeat this process once or twice a day, as needed.
Some creams have applicators. Use the applicator as described on the packaging.
To use a vaginal powder:
Sprinkle the powder onto your finger and insert it into the vagina. Gently massage the powder into the vaginal walls for a few minutes. Repeat this process once or twice a day, as needed.
When it comes to vaginal health, probiotics are an essential part of any woman's hygiene routine. By keeping the vaginal bacteria healthy and balanced, you can help prevent infection and keep your vagina healthy!
Thanks for reading! I hope this article was helpful in explaining the importance of vaginal probiotics and how to choose the best product for you.
Happy Vaginal Health! :)
The Garnuu Team
DISCLAIMER: This content was written for informational purposes to educate women only. It is not medical advice.