I started having problems a few years ago. Went to the dr. got precribed the medicine, it healed, but then was back within 2 months. I have 4 teen daughters so we're a very 'in touch with our feminine side' household. Everyone knows how to wash, wipe etc. This was my first experience with an STD since I was a teen. I am also married so there's no multiple partners. On my second trip to the drs. where I was almost in tears I was so frustrated about being back in his office so soon he took the time to explain a bit more. He told me in medical circles BV is often known as the 'clean freaks disease' (!) He asked me a bit about my bathing habits. I shower every day and at that time was washing that area with shower gel. I was also ice-skating alot and taking long baths with bath oils afterwards to ease the sore muscles. Basically he explained some women's vagina's ph level is very sensitive - and almost anything can throw it off, which then opens it up to the bacteria to invade - in my case it was probably perfumed shower gel and bath oils, but also sanitary products etct! I dropped the washing my privates with perfumed stuff and only use water and sometimes 'simple' or sensitive soap with no perfume. A private midwife friend suggested using a tampon dipped in live bio yogurt, which I now do after periods, and for a few hours after sex as a preventitive - and so far it's worked.
I wrote a post on BV sometime last year. The acidophilous and folic acid worked temporarily, but then sometimes it had no effect at all, esp after sexual intercourse or after my period. Then, I really changed a lot of habits and so far so good.
Bottom line: REALLY had to change my lifestyle.
No alcohol, very little sugar in my diet (including sweet fruits), fresh organic foods, quit smoking, reduced coffee, wear less tight-fitting pants, keep lower body warm, switched to CLOTH sanitary pads, take acidophilous and folic acid every day.
Also! NO birth control pills or antibiotics!
I think this whole thing has a lot to do with contemporary lifestyle. Most of our foods are very processed unless you're extra conscious to make an effort to eat organic foods, and I heard from a guy who works at a cracker company that the additives they use in order to keep the food looking like new is very dangerous. For instance, they might use on ingredient to prevent decay, and something else to give it a certain flavor; okay separately, but toxic if taken together. They don't take this into consideration. I think it's called "chemical coctail effect," and it will cause an imbalance to your natural hormone level; even impotence or prenatal deformity.
Second, I was ill about 9 years ago and the hospital gave me a lot of antibiotics. This completely killed my immune system. This is important b/c the acidophilous is a PRObiotic, which is a natural substance that helps boost your body's own immune system, whereas antibiotics will lower your body's immune system and kill the external virus through the medication's strength. If you've taken a lot of cold medicines, allergy meds, acne creams/meds etc, your natural immune system will likely be very weak! Therefore, don't look for a quick fix. It will only take you a step back from all the hard work you put into the acidophilous and folic acid.
Also, birth control pills will cause BV, too.
Another thing, I saw this documentary that sanitary pads and esp tampons, panty liners etc are very toxic. The cotton is bleached. Second, they use a lot of chemicals to keep the pads or tampons "clean." Artificial fragrances, chemicals to absorb more liquid etc. The thinner the pad, the more toxic it is b/c the chemicals are more condensed on a smaller surface. They tested the amount of toxins that emit from the pads. At first, before menstral blood seeped into the pad was ok, but more and more toxins were emitted as time lapsed. These toxins go into your vag, pores and harm the uterus and ovaries. Also, this is a big reason why we get that rotton smell when we menstrate. It's not really the menstral blood that will cause such a smell, it's because the toxins mix with the blood and cause this, not to mentin cramps. Of course, tampons are worse because it's like you've corked yourself up. The smell, cramps, bloating will be worse than when using pads. I changed to organic cloth sanitary pads. They feel amazing! No sticking to skin, no scraping, cramps are almost nonexistent, smell is gone.
I've been away from my bf for a month and a half and the BV is gone. Don't know if it's b/c I'm taking better care of my diet or if it's b/c I'm not having sex. Maybe both. I will update again after I see my bf again.