Normal Vaginal pH
The inside environment of the vagina is acidic, with a typical pH of less than 4.5. The pH scale is used to determine whether a material is acidic or alkaline. A reading over 7 suggests alkaline, whereas a number below 7 indicates acidic. It is typical for your vaginal pH to fluctuate over time. If you are in your reproductive years, the pH of your vaginal fluid should be between 3.8 and 4.5. It is typical to have a vaginal pH slightly higher than 4.5 before your first menstrual period or after menopause.
Lactobacilli are helpful bacteria that live in your vagina and maintain its acidity by secreting lactic acid and hydrogen peroxide. Your vagina’s acidic environment is critical for its protection against hazardous bacterial or fungal development.
However, for a variety of reasons, the vagina’s normal pH balance may shift and begin to become more alkaline. It is critical that you are aware of this shift since an alkaline environment may leave your vagina exposed to infections.
To Test My Vaginal pH
There are several home testing kits available on the market that can assist you in measuring the pH balance of your vagina. The majority of them include the use of a strip of colored paper that changes color when kept on the vaginal wall for a set period of time. Remove the paper and compare the color on it to the chart included with the package. Each color has a matching value that can assist you in determining the pH level of your vagina.
It is critical that you read the material provided with the test kit. This will direct you as to how long you should keep the strip on your vaginal wall and under what conditions you should do the test.
Vaginal pH Imbalance Symptoms
What Happens If Your Vaginal pH Balance Is Off?
Urinary tract infections (UTIs)Infections in the urinary tract, sometimes known as UTIs, can occur when vaginal pH levels are out of equilibrium. Women in menopause are more susceptible to UTIs because their pH levels tend to be higher than 4.5.
Yeast InfectionCandida fungus is the most common cause of vaginal yeast infections. While candida is present in your vagina, their proliferation can cause an infection, itching, and discomfort, as well as vaginal discharge and pain during intercourse or urine. According to research, Candida infection may raise the chance of contracting HIV.
Increased Risk Of Serious InfectionsBacterial vaginosis and trich may also raise the chance of getting more serious illnesses and infections such as HIV, HPV (human papillomavirus), and herpes simplex virus.
TrichomoniasisTrichomoniasis, often known as trich, is a common sexually transmitted infection caused by the parasite trichomonas vaginalis. Trich is characterized by frothy yellowish-green discharge, acute itching, painful urination, and little red spots on the cervix. Cervical cancer and pregnancy difficulties are increased by this infection.
Bacterial VaginosisBacterial vaginosis is a condition in which bacteria proliferate in the vagina. It is distinguished by a foul-smelling or fishy vaginal discharge that can be gray, yellow, or white in appearance. It may also produce vaginal pain, itching, or a burning feeling.
The vaginal environment is somewhat acidic, which preserves sperm mobilization by preventing pathogen colonization. Bacteria attach to sperms and lower their chances of reaching the egg. Pathogens in the vagina also raise the chance of inflammation and infection, both of which have an impact on fertility.
As you might imagine, an imbalance in the pH of your vagina can open the door to a variety of undesirable conditions. Fortunately, there are several natural ways to restore pH equilibrium.
Change Tampons Frequently During MenstruationBlood has a slightly alkaline pH. Avoid using feminine hygiene items, such as tampons or sanitary pads, for an extended period of time since the standing blood may raise the pH of your vagina. To keep your pH equilibrium down there, keep replacing them with fresh ones. According to one study, even tampons that claim to be pH balanced do not appreciably influence vaginal pH.
Use Antibiotics WiselyAntibiotics are effective against both healthy and dangerous microorganisms. This job entails it being in charge of modifying the vaginal flora, or the balance of bacteria that aids in the maintenance of the vaginal pH equilibrium. If possible, avoid using them too frequently, or mix antibiotics with probiotics.
MIMI (Multi ion mask insert)
- Can be worn with any facemask and provides additional heavy-duty protection.
- Adult & Youth Sizes Available
Use Condoms Or Other Barriers During IntercourseSemen has the ability to neutralize the acidic environment of your vagina. If you do not intend to conceive, wear a condom or similar barrier during intercourse.
Ensure Airflow To Your Vagina And VulvaA lack of ventilation can elevate humidity levels down there, fostering the growth of harmful germs and yeast. Wear light and comfy cotton underwear and attempt to sleep without them to allow your parts to aerate.
Stop Douching And Use Only Mild And Suitable Intimate Products
If you’re wondering how to restore pH balance, the first step is to quit douching. Douching is the process of cleaning the vagina (or any other bodily cavity) with an upward stream of water or a solution of water, vinegar, baking soda, antiseptics, and iodine. It is a popular habit among women, but it can have a harmful impact on vaginal pH balance and reproductive health. According to research, this technique should be avoided.
Only use warm water or intimate wash products that are specifically developed to maintain your vaginal pH balance to gently clean the outer part of the vagina.
Increase Probiotic IntakeProbiotics, as the name implies, promote the development and proliferation of beneficial bacteria, particularly lactobacilli, and aid in the restoration of vaginal pH equilibrium. You can take probiotic supplements or vaginally apply specific probiotics.
When to see a doctor
In general, the vagina may heal itself with a little help from natural therapies to restore vaginal pH balance. However, you should seek medical attention if any of the following symptoms persist or worsen: foul odor, itching, burning feeling, and green, yellow, milky white, or cheese-like discharge.
The vagina is adept at washing and preserving its interior environment. However, a number of circumstances can disrupt its normal pH equilibrium. Between the first menstrual cycle and menopause, the optimal pH level of a healthy vagina is between 3.8 and 4.5. You may assist restore your vaginal pH balance by including natural therapies into your everyday routine. Taking probiotics, avoiding soaps or cleansing products on the vagina, and wearing breathable fabric are all examples of things you may do. A pH imbalance may leave you susceptible to STDs and UTIs. If you are concerned that your vaginal pH is excessively alkaline or that you have an infection, you should see your gynecologist as soon as possible.
Maintaining the proper vaginal pH is critical for keeping it healthy and clear of infections. A change in the color and texture of the discharge, as well as itching and a foul odor, may indicate a pH imbalance and probable infection. At such times, you can rely on any of the above-mentioned home remedies to help restore normal vaginal pH. Cranberry juice, lemon water, soy milk, and kefir can help balance the pH. Ensuring proper airflow, keeping it dry, protection during intercourse, and taking antibiotics as needed can help prevent things from worsening. Consult a doctor if symptoms do not improve after a couple of days.