Ignorance is bliss but not when it comes to your vagina. Your vagina is a heaven, delicate and soft organ responsible for the miracle of life. There are many misconceptions related to vaginas, and some of them are just bizarre. An odd misconception is that vaginas shouldn't smell; it is untrue. Like every other organ of your body, the vagina also has a specific distinctive smell.
Your vaginal odor can be normal, or it might be an early indication of an illness; whatever it is, it's related to the bacterial community of your vagina.
What is my vagina supposed to smell like?
Your vagina's distinctive smell depends largely on hygiene, food intake, or overall health. However, vaginas are supposed to smell slightly, which is not something to be worried about. Typically the scent of your vagina changes with your menstrual cycle, the pH level of your vagina, and food intake.
No matter what your culture tells you, your yoni won't smell like roses and fruits, but it shouldn't smell pungent or fish-like. If you consistently smell a terrible odor from your vagina, visit a doctor.
What causes vaginal odor?
A vaginal smell can vary from slightly tangy to metallic or yeast-like. There are many reasons for vaginal odor. A few common vaginal odors, their causes, and related concerns are elaborated on.
1. Fish-like odor
50% of women during their reproductive age can feel a fishy smell vagina. This fish-like odor is typically a sign of bacterial vaginosis, i.e., an imbalance in the vaginal flora. Consulting a doctor and taking a prescribed course of antibacterial drugs can solve this problem.
2. Pungent and Fishy odor
An extraordinarily pungent and fishy odor can signify Trichomoniasis, which is classified as a non-viral STI. Other symptoms relating to this infection are mild such as an itchy vulva, discoloration of vaginal discharge, and redness of the area. However, this infection can be easily treated using antibiotic drugs.
3. Yeast-like odor
Multiple vaginal yeast infections can cause itching, burning, and curd-like vaginal discharge. These infections aren't typically smelly, so if the smell is a nuisance, consult a doctor to rule out any chance of underlying medical problems.
4. Personal odor
Every person has a significant body odor. This is one characteristic that enables our pets to find us even in crowds. Like every other body organ, every vagina has its smell, and it's nothing to be ashamed of. Usually, it's what attracts sexual partners. Personal vaginal odor depends on personal hygiene, food intake, nutritional preferences, and habits.
5. Ammonia-like odor
If your vagina smells like ammonia, it might indicate a urinary tract infection (UTI) early. Consult a doctor to take immediate precautions.
6. Metallic odor
The metallic pungent vaginal odor is not typical at all. It might be a sign of cervical or uterine cancers. Many other symptoms follow, such as bleeding during sex or spotting. If you are facing any of these issues, we suggest you visit your OB-GYN as soon as possible.
7. Fruity or sweet odor
A sweet or fruity vaginal odor is usually caused by consuming lots of citrus fruit. If that's the cause, don't worry; it'll go away automatically once you intake water. However, it can also be because of yeast infections. An antibiotic course can cure the yeast infection.
8. Sweat-like odor
Continuous exercise or working might result in excessive sweating, which can also cause your vaginal area to smell bad.
9. Blood-like odor
One of the most common causes of vaginal odor is forgotten tampons. Change your menstrual pad or tampon every 4-8 hours. Wash thoroughly, and don't let the blood accumulate. Blood has a typically sickening and very distinctive smell.
Tips to get rid of unpleasant vaginal odor
A vaginal smell can be typical, and it can be because of an infection. No matter the cause, the following tips can be followed to maintain a healthy vaginal environment that looks good and smells pretty.
• Change your underwear regularly.
Clean yourself down there with lukewarm water and change your underwear regularly. Use cotton panties to avoid sweating.
• Bath frequently, but avoid douching.
Take frequent baths but do not use a vaginal douche. It disrupts vaginal flora and pH.
• Don't use chemical-based products on your vagina.
Do not wash your vagina with bubble baths, sprays, or deodorants to clean it.
• Use condoms and pee after sex.
Using condoms not only prevents you from getting pregnant but also helps in saving your vagina from sexually transmitted diseases. Always remember to pee after sex; it helps to keep the pH balance of your vagina regular.
• Avoid smelly foods and take probiotics.
Probiotics support the growth of healthy bacteria and hence eliminate any chance of unpleasant smell from the vagina. Also, have a healthy diet to maintain a balance.
• Change pads and tampons frequently.
Change menstrual pads or tampons at least every 4-8 hours. Even if your blood flow is little, pads promote humidity and hence can cause the vagina to smell like blood and sweat. Using Wombilee's perforated pads is an effective remedy.
Like your stomach, belly button, ears, or nose, your vagina is also home to many different bacteria. The normal functions of these bacterial cells change daily or hourly, resulting in vaginal scent. Your vagina's pH varies between 3.8 to 4.5, which makes it acidic. This pH level supports the habituated bacterial life, prevents foreign germs, and is also one of the common causes of the vagina's scent or smell.
Do not ever get embarrassed about your vaginal odor. It's normal, and for your information, it's not just women that smell down there!