You may remember from grade-school chemistry class that the pH of something determines how acidic or basic (alkaline) it is. With that in mind, you might be surprised to learn that your vagina is a chemistry lesson all in itself!
In fact, pH balance plays an essential part in the overall health of your vagina. You see, when your pH is off, you’ll likely notice a less-than-favorable odor or even a little itching, which could be signs that a yeast infection or bacterial vaginosis might be moving in.
Ready to learn more? You’ve come to the right place! In this article, we’ll tell you everything you need to know about your vagina’s delicate pH and how to restore vaginal pH balance. Let’s dive in!
But first, why does vaginal pH balance even matter?
Right, so before we get too deep into all the awesome natural remedies, let’s first discuss why your pH balance is so important!
In general, pH balance runs on a scale of 0 to 7. The most standard level of pH in your vagina is around 3.8 to 4.5. It’s this slightly acidic pH that allows your vagina to naturally fight off infection. But if the delicate balance of your pH becomes tilted in either direction, unhealthy bacteria can take over.
Factors That Can Cause Your pH Level To Become Imbalanced:
- You’re on your period: The joys of being a woman mean things get a little messy and a bit heated down there once a month — and that’s perfectly okay! Just show your vagina some extra TLC because bacteria imbalance is at a higher risk during this time of the month.
- Your sexual activity: Did you know that semen has a pH of 7.1 to 8? That’s why having penetrative sex can actually alter your vagina’s pH and allow bacteria levels to grow as a result. If you’re prone to UTIs or yeast infections, it’s a good idea to use a condom to help prevent infection. Also, safe sex will help protect you from STIs, so it’s a win/win.
- Your prescribed medicine: If you’re taking prescribed antibiotics, it can play a major role in changing your pH levels — it’s actually a pretty normal side effect of antibiotics and something to be aware of if you start taking them.
In general, you’ll know if your pH balance has been thrown off, as you’ll likely experience itchiness, strong vaginal odors, and even a little swelling. But, the good news is that there are plenty of natural remedies for you to get your pH balance back on track!
The Best Natural Remedies to Restore Vaginal pH Balance
When it comes to treating some vaginal infections like bacterial vaginosis (BV), your doctor will often prescribe you antibiotics.
However, when antibiotics are prescribed over and over again, the bacteria they typically target can grow resistant. Ladies who suffer from chronic BV and recurrent UTIs are at the highest risk of developing antibiotic resistance.
Antibiotics can also lead to worse pH imbalance because they tend to wipe out all bacteria — even the “good” bacteria.
To be clear, some infections, like UTIs, are difficult to treat once they set in and usually require antibiotics, so always seek medical attention if you believe you have an active UTI infection.
However, it’s a good idea to consider natural remedies to speed up recovery and prevent pH balance concerns in the future. We recommend checking in with your doctor to make your natural remedies are compatible with your current regimen or medications.
So, without further ado, here are some of the best natural remedies to restore the pH balance in your vagina:
Consider taking boric acid supplements.
Believe it or not, boric acid has been used to naturally treat BV for over 100 years. The Killer from Love Wellness is a simple yet super powerful single-ingredient solution for maintaining healthy levels of vaginal yeast and bacteria, as well as balanced vaginal pH.
Nix the sugar.
Foods responsible for pH balance concerns are typically high in sugar. Once you cut those sugars out, you just might find that frustrating pH imbalances will be a thing of the past.
It means well but douching is a strong no when it comes to keeping your vaginal pH under control. Not only does it not work, studies show douching can worsen the health of your vagina and can even have some long term consequences!
The best way to balance your vaginal pH is to avoid harsh soaps and avoid flushing your lady bits with a stream of water. Keep in mind that your reproductive organs are self-cleaning — it is supposed to be teeming with bacteria. The key is balance, not elimination!
To clean your vulva, stick with a pH Balancing Cleanser like the one from Love Wellness. This powerful — yet gentle — formula won’t irritate sensitive skin and will help to maintain normal vaginal pH levels.
Boost your healthy bacteria with quality probiotics.
Another natural remedy to restore the pH balance in your vagina is by taking a quality daily probiotic supplement, like Good Girl Probiotics.
Probiotics help to maintain a balanced vaginal pH and healthy levels of vaginal yeast and bacteria. While there are a ton of probiotic supplements on the market, Good Girl Probiotics from Love Wellness is unique because it’s made with eight strains of good bacteria for vaginal health, while most popular probiotics only contain one.
Find ways to destress.
Did you know that stress affects all facets of the human body — including the health of your vagina? In fact, a recent study highlighted the connection between spikes in cortisol (the stress hormone) and BV. Although stress is unavoidable, there are definitely some healthy ways to manage it to prevent your stress hormones from negatively affecting your health — including your delicate vaginal pH.
Not sure where to start? Consider the following destressing activities:
- Exercise: Physical activity can do wonders to increase your brain’s production of endorphins — the “feel good” neurotransmitters. Some types of activities, like tai chi, pilates, and yoga, can be especially helpful for reducing stress.
- Deep breathing: Find a quiet place to breathe slowly and deeply through your nose and out through your mouth for a few minutes. Deep breathing can help oxygenate your blood, center your body, and clear your mind.
- Try the Less Stress Kit: Stress bringin’ you down? Never fear! Love Wellness is here to help with the Less Stress Kit — a kit of targeted supplements paired together to help you find your calm, rest peacefully at night, and support your digestion for overall bliss.
- Focus on a favorite activity: Instead of focusing on whatever is causing you to worry, try doing a puzzle, playing a stimulating game, watching a show that makes you LOL, or spending time on a favorite hobby.
- Listen to music: Another great way to destress is simply by listening to the sweet sounds of your favorite tunes.
Pay attention to your undies.
Your panties can affect the health of your vagina in several ways. To keep your feminine regions healthy and happy as well as your vaginal pH balanced, consider:
- Wearing underwear that is made from natural, breathable, absorbent fabrics — like good ol’ cotton.
- Washing your undies with a hypoallergenic detergent.
- Going commando at night to prevent moisture buildup.
- Changing your panties throughout the day if you have a lot of irritation or moisture buildup.
Use barrier methods during sex
According to research, increased exposure to semen — which has an alkalizing effect on the vagina — may increase your risk for BV. Using a condom during intercourse may help to lessen semen’s impact on vaginal flora.
Similarly, using finger cots and dental dams during the act may help to prevent additional bacteria from being introduced to your vagina as well.
After having sex, you can use the Mini Do It All Wipes from Love Wellness to gently clean your labia and vulvar skin to help maintain your vaginal pH levels and good bacteria.
When your delicate vaginal pH is out of balance, it can cause an overgrowth of certain bacteria which can lead to yeast infections and other issues. Fortunately, there are many ways to naturally restore the pH balance of your vagina. Some options include taking boric acid or probiotic supplements and avoiding douches as well as harsh soaps.
From sex to childbirth and everything before, in between, and after, your vagina does a lot for you. Show it some love, and check out Love Wellness today to help keep your pH levels in check!
BASIC study: is intravaginal boric acid non-inferior to metronidazole in symptomatic bacterial vaginosis? Study protocol for a randomized controlled trial | NCBl
Psychosocial Stress, Cortisol Levels, and Maintenance of Vaginal Health | NCBI
Association between Semen Exposure and Incident Bacterial Vaginosis
Vaginal Douching: Evidence for Risks or Benefits to Women’s Health | NCBI