Ever wonder what some common reasons for vaginal itching are?
It seems to be ok – well, common at least, to see a man scratch his privates but it’s a different kettle of fish for ladies. If you have an itch down there you‘ll squirm in your chair, cross and uncross your legs, or go to the bathroom to get some relief. However you deal, vaginal itchiness is annoying and frustrating. But what are common reasons for vaginal itching?
1. Bacterial Vaginosis
One of the leading causes of vaginal itching is bacterial vaginosis, better known as B.V. B.V. is caused by an imbalance in the pH levels of your vagina, generally meaning that there are more unhealthy bacteria in the vaginal area than there are healthy bacteria. This leads to itchiness and discomfort. Water-like discharge is one of the tell tale signs of B.V. along with itchiness and odor, but the good news is that most cases can be cleared up with over the counter remedy creams.
Vaginal itchiness can very often be the result of a genetic skin condition that also affects other areas of the body, like eczema for example. Though it isn’t generally associated with your genitals, eczema can cause a patchy rash just like the ones more commonly found on a person’s arms or face. Eczema can be tougher to treat, but can be eased with natural oatmeal baths and mild doses of steroids.
3. Contact Dermatitis
Contact Dermatitis is a type of skin irritation that is the result of an allergic reaction of some sort. Symptoms include a great deal of itchiness and discomfort and can often be caused by negative reactions to products including perfumed body washes and sprays, certain types of lubricant and even some brands of condoms. There is a distinct red soreness to contact dermatitis, but it can be relieved with pharmacy creams and eliminating the offending products from your life.
4. Sexually Transmitted Infection
Clearly an obvious potential cause, but definitely one that needs to be emphasized. Many of the common sexually transmitted are usually accompanied by an uncomfortable degree of vaginal itchiness. STIs that boast itchiness as a key symptom include herpes, crabs, gonorrhea, chlamydia and trichomoniasis. The only foolproof way to avoid this experience is to practice safe sex. The pill may protect you from unwanted pregnancy, but condoms will keep the STIs away.
5. Yeast Infection
Yeast infections are perhaps the most common cause of vaginal itchiness and are again caused by an unhealthy imbalance of natural pH levels within the vagina. Yeast infections can be caused by many different things including a change in diet, stress, sexual activity, antibiotic and, annoyingly, even at random. Characterized by thick white discharge, yeast infections can be easily remedied by a large number of over the counter medicines and natural remedies.
6. Lichen Sclerosus
Lichen Sclerosus is actually a rather serious condition that results in an itchiness of the vulva and white spots appearing on the vaginal area. Unfortunately, it can occur completely randomly, but it is very often related to a significant change in hormones or a highly overactive immune system. This cannot be treated over the counter, so if you are experiencing the mentioned symptoms, the best thing is to see a doctor immediately.
One of life’s cruelest tricks is that we cannot avoid our hormones! The female body goes through so many important changes in a lifetime that there are bound to be some hormone imbalances and surges from time to time. Once again we can thank our hormones for messing with our internal pH levels, which, yep, you guessed it, can result in a uncomfortable period of vaginal itchiness! Again, you can turn to over the counter treatments, but some women also opt for the birth control pill to help regulate their hormones.
If you have persistent itching the best option is to seek medical advice. Or, if you can’t work out the type of itch, again see a doctor/gyno.