How to Tell the Difference Between Bacterial Vaginosis & Thrush


First off, you’re taking the right first step by listening to your body! Symptoms like unusual discharge and pain can let you know something is wrong, and it’s important not to ignore them. Below, we give tips for figuring out if you have a case of bacterial vaginosis or a yeast infection.

It is always ideal to see a doctor to truly determine (but we know access to healthcare isn’t always what it should be) and knowing what symptoms to look for can help your doctor or pharmacist point you in the right direction for treatment. Especially as it’s possible to have both thrush and BV at the same time!

BV, or Bacterial Vaginosis

What it is

As its name implies, this is a bacterial infection of the vagina, caused by an imbalance of the ‘good’ and ‘bad’ bacteria that naturally live there. This imbalance can be caused by sex, but is not a sexually transmitted infection, but it can put you at higher risk for STIs like chlamydia. BV  can also be caused by douching, so it’s just another reason why to never ever do it!

The Symptoms

BV generally causes unusual discharge with a strong, fishy odour.This discharge can increase after sex. It doesn’t cause itchiness or pain. Unfortunately, the NHS suggests that up to 50% of people don’t experience symptoms!

The Treatment

Once you go to your doctor and get a cotton swab text to check if the infection is BV. There are also some at home tests available at the pharmacy. If you do have BV, it is treated with antibiotic tablets or…

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