Most Common Bacterial Vaginosis Symptoms

Bacterial vaginosis symptoms can be confusing. Not all women suffering from this condition have symptoms, and not all of the symptoms associated with bacterial vaginosis necessarily mean you have the infection. Understanding the symptoms can make it easier to tell whether you have a bacterial infection, or another vaginal problem.

An unpleasant odor

By far the most common symptom is the smell. Like other vaginal infections, bacterial vaginosis produces a fishy smell. The odor is usually pretty strong. Many women suffering from an infected vagina constantly worry about whether other people can detect the scent. They may develop low-self esteem and depression from this. It can be helpful for women to remember that millions of other women have dealt with this condition, so they aren\’t alone. The smell is just a result of the infection and doesn\’t reflect on them as a person.


Discharge is another one of the common symptoms. All vagina\’s produce a small amount of discharge. This can increase during ovulation. Any unexpected changes in the consistency or color of discharge should be checked out by a doctor. With bacterial vaginosis, your discharge will most likely be thinner than usual. It will also have a grayish white color, sometimes with a yellow tint. Some bacterial vaginosis symptoms, discharge in particular, can be confused with the symptoms of a yeast infection. However, discharge from yeast infections is much thicker and resembles cottage cheese.

Other symptoms

A few other bacterial vaginosis symptoms may occur. Itching and burning have been reported by some women. If you\’re experiencing vaginal burning and itching, don\’t jump to conclusions. You might not have an infection at all; symptoms like this are sometimes related to simple irritation of the vaginal area. This irritation can be caused by things like scented tampons and colored toilet paper. Redness and soreness can also be symptoms of bacterial vaginosis, but these are less common.

Dealing with the symptoms

Until treatment, there are a few things you can do to ease the symptoms. Taking a hot bath will relieve itching and burning if you\’re having problems with those symptoms. A cold compress takes care of any swelling. If your vagina itches, resist the urge to scratch it. This can make the irritation worse. Washing frequently with a gentle soap will help keep the smell down.

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