Itchiness, a burning sensation, and sores in your vaginal area can disrupt your entire life. It’s important to seek an accurate diagnosis and treatment so you can enjoy your daily activities, pain-free! Allow us to shed some light on two vaginal conditions – bacterial vaginosis (BV) and herpes simplex virus (HSV).
Bacterial Vaginosis (BV)
There are “good” and “bad” bacteria in a woman’s vagina. In a healthy vagina, the good bacteria balance out the bad bacteria so infections don’t occur. However, if there is a bacteria imbalance in the vagina, issues like bacterial vaginosis can form. Bacterial vaginosis is the most common vaginal condition plaguing women ages 15 to 44 in the United States. Many women do not have symptoms of BV, but if you do, you may experience:
- Burning sensation while urinating
- Itchiness and/or a fishy smell in the vaginal area
- Thin white, gray, or green discharge
You are at a higher risk of contracting BV if you are sexually active or have more than one sex partner. Using scented soaps or douching regularly can also cause BV to form, as they upset the normal bacteria balance within your vagina. Our nurse practitioner, Caitlyn, can test you for BV and prescribe antibiotics for you to treat the condition. If BV reoccurs, we can discuss lifestyle changes that may lessen your chance of contracting BV in the future.
Herpes Simplex Virus (HSV)
There are two types of the herpes simplex virus: HSV-1, also known as oral herpes, and HSV-2, also known as genital herpes. The most telling sign of oral herpes is sores around the mouth and lips, also referred to as cold sores or fever blisters. If you have genital herpes, the sores would be found near your genital area. Both types of herpes spreads through contact, such as:
- Oral sex
- Anal sex
- Vaginal sex
- Touching a sore
Although uncomfortable, herpes does not cause serious health issues. If you notice an outbreak, get tested right away and receive treatment for herpes. It’s important to know that, oftentimes, herpes is a recurring infection. Once treated, it may come back again and again – in less severity each time. Our nurse practitioner can conduct a swab test to see if you are dealing with herpes, prescribe medication, and discuss ways to lower your risk of contracting herpes in the future.
To make an appointment with Nurse Caitlyn, text the word APPOINTMENT to 404-777-4771 or call the clinic at 404-937-3334.
If you missed part one of this series about yeast infections and urinary tract infections, make sure to check it out.