Bacterial vaginosis is a condition that occurs in the vagina when too much of certain bacteria are present, upsetting the natural balance. It is the most common vaginal infection affecting women aged 15 to 44. Although it doesn’t usually cause complications, bacterial vaginosis can lead to premature birth in pregnant women and make a women more susceptible to contracting sexually transmitted infections. Bacterial vaginosis may also cause pelvic inflammatory disease or other infections.
Information. Steps can be taken to prevent the development of bacterial vaginosis. Women should take care to minimize vaginal irritation through using mild, sensitive soaps and unscented feminine hygiene products. Women should also always avoid douching, instead allowing the vagina to be cleansed through normal bathing. Failing to do this disrupts the natural balance and will increase the vagina’s susceptibility to infection. Practicing safe sexual practices, such as limiting the number of partners and using protective condoms, can also minimize a person’s risk of disrupting the health balance of bacteria. Bacterial vaginosis is strongly linked to sexual practices, and it is quite rare in women who have never had sexual intercourse. It has not been shown to result from exposure to things like toilet seats, unclean bedding, or swimming pools.