How is your vagina meant to smell like? The fun fact is that your vagina has a natural scent. However, sometimes this scent might not be something that would please you, but it is what it is. So, if you are experiencing an unpleasant smell down there, there could be many other different reasons. We have compiled them here along with their respective treatment options for you.
Why Does My Vagina Stink?
Women have a natural vaginal scent that can change throughout the menstrual cycle. However, a strong odor can be a sign of an infection. So, if you’re noticing a vaginal stink, these could be the reasons;
- Strong spices
- Smoked foods
- Excess onion or garlic
- Broccoli or asparagus
- Drinks like coffee or alcohol
Types of Vaginal Stink
Fishy vaginal odor
Your vagina is naturally filled with bacteria and when there is an overgrowth, this condition is called Bacterial Vaginosis (commonly known as BV) which causes a “fishy” odor. Sometimes, symptoms of BV may include a thick and frothy discharge that is white or grey, which causes itching and fishy smell, especially after sex or washing with soap.
Sweet or beer-like vaginal odor
The presence of yeast in your vaginas is a sign of good health. But sometimes this yeast overgrows and causes a yeast infection. The discharge looks like cottage cheese which brings a sweet or beer-like odor.
Sour or stale stink
This stink is caused by Trichomoniasis infection. Trichomoniasis infection is caused by a protozoan, a microscopic, one-celled animal called a trichomonas, which is a sexually transmitted infection.
Onions or garlic-like odor
This happens when you eat a lot of onions or garlic which results in excreting onion or garlic smell in your urine, and your vaginal discharge may change temporarily in smell, as well.
Tips to Get Rid of Future Vaginal Stink
Choose your clothing wisely
Breathable cotton is less likely to hold moisture close to the vagina hence making it more difficult for bacteria and other sources of stink to accumulate to your vaginal area.
Maintain the right diet
The right diet is good for a healthy body, and that includes your vagina. consider eating a balanced diet with plenty of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and lean proteins.
Safe, gentle vaginal hygiene practices can reduce your vaginal stink. Some strategies include:
- Changing underwear daily.
- Urinating immediately after sex.
- Taking a shower after exercising.
- Washing underwear in unscented products.
- Using a gentle, fragrance-free soap on the vagina when using.
- Wiping front to back to prevent fecal matter from getting into the vagina.
Consider your menstrual products
Some menstrual products trap odor, compounding this effect. To reduce the stink, consider changing your menstrual products frequently.
Other healthful habits that can help you reduce the risk of vaginal stink:
- Avoid oral sex with people who have thrush in their mouth.
- Avoid using scented or flavored products in or around your vagina.
- Concider limiting the number of sexual partners and practicing safer sex.
- Keep your vaginal area dry to prevent yeast growing. Towel off after a shower, and avoid sitting in wet underwear or swimwear for long.
- Take antibiotics only when need be. Antibiotics may kill beneficial vaginal bacteria, triggering the growth of vaginal yeast. It’s good to seek advice from your doctor before taking any antibiotics.
When Should I see the Doctor?
If you experience a serious odor, often other symptoms will appear alongside the stink.
See your doctor if an odor is accompanied with the following symptoms:
- Pain during sex
- Itching or burning
- Thick and cottage cheese discharge
- Vaginal bleeding unrelated to your period
The Final Word
The best way to keep your vagina smelling healthy is to take a shower regularly. Use warm water and mild soap to wash the outside of your vulva. Also, consider wearing clean and dry underwear. You should also avoid using products with fragrances, which can cause irritation, infection and hence the stink to your vagina. If your vaginal stink bassist, seek guidance from your doctor.