The vaginal flora are the bacteria that live inside the vagina. The normal vaginal flora are dominated by various lactobacillus species. Lactobacilli help to keep the vagina healthy by producing lactic acid, hydrogen peroxide, and other substances that inhibit the growth of yeast and other unwanted organisms.
The community of bacteria in the vagina that is considered "healthy" for a woman can vary a lot between individuals, a new study suggests. The finding is contrary to the prevailing idea that some vaginal microbes are nearly universally good for a woman's health while others are bad. For example, doctors have said women need high levels of Lactobacillus bacteria, which produce lactic acid, in the vagina.
Bacterial vaginosis is the most common cause of abnormal vaginal odor and discharge. It is caused by a change in the type of bacteria found in the vagina. Normally, bacteria belonging mostly to the Lactobacillus family live harmlessly in the vagina and produce chemicals that keep the vagina mildly acidic.
They filled in diary cards daily. Blind vaginal swabs were self-taken two-seven times weekly. A smear was air-dried for later Gram staining.
However, it is much more common among girls and women who have had sex with one or more partners. Small amounts of these anaerobic bacteria and Gardnerella can normally be found in your vagina. Bacterial vaginosis occurs when the balance of organisms in your vagina is upset and the anaerobic bacteria overgrow.
Vaginal flora or vaginal microbiota are the microorganisms that colonize the vagina. The amount and type of bacteria present have significant implications for a woman's overall health. The primary colonizing bacteria of a healthy individual are of the genus Lactobacillus.
Bacterial vaginosis is a type of vaginal inflammation caused by the overgrowth of bacteria naturally found in the vagina, which upsets the natural balance. Women in their reproductive years are most likely to get bacterial vaginosis, but it can affect women of any age. The cause isn't completely understood, but certain activities, such as unprotected sex or frequent douching, increase your risk.
The makeup of your vaginal ecosystem is in constant flux. It changes with the phases of your reproductive life puberty, menarche, pregnancy, menopause as well as with your hormonal cycle 1, 2. But your vaginal flora works continually to maintain a level of homeostasis, protecting and facilitating fertility before and during your reproductive years, and helping to keep your body healthy your entire life.
The balance of bacteria in your vagina is important in keeping you, and your reproductive tract, healthy. The symptoms can range from a fishy or unpleasant odor to itching, discomfort, and inflammation 1. In many cases, the most significant impact of symptomatic BV is emotional and social, especially for people whose BV returns multiple times despite treatment.