2:16 pm - 09/13/2008

bv/boric acid douches

This is a really stupid, basic question, but I couldn't find what I was looking for in the memories -- exactly how does a douche work?

Back story: I got a yeast infection about a week and a half ago, nothing out of the ordinary. Had itching, discharge, etc. I treated it with a one-day treatment like I've done in the past. Itching went away. Discharge stayed and it got this fishy smell. I started my period right afterwards, though, so I decided to wait and see if that cleared it up. Alas ... no. Discharge is still here, and so is the smell. Great.

I'm going to make an appointment with Planned Parenthood on Monday, but they're kind of slow around here (even with infections) so I know it could well be several days or a week before that happens and in the meantime, I want to try a boric acid douche (can't find gel capsules anywhere to make capsules), because it's just GROSS. (Reading this community has made me think boric acid is a better bet than vinegar but feel free to correct me.)

But, I've never douched before, and I don't really know how it works. How often do I do it? Is the mixture supposed to stay in there somehow? And exactly how do I get it up there? Some sort of syringe?

Thanks!
mslsbth_all_his 13th-Sep-2008 06:23 pm (UTC)
I heard douche is bad bad bad. You might have a bacterial infection; it's happened to me after a yeast infection before. I just read that acidophillus could help for that as well as for yeast. :)
_venus_ 13th-Sep-2008 06:33 pm (UTC)
Oh, really?? I know douching in general is bad, I just thought once in awhile to reset the acidity was okay. Acidophillus in oral form??
iamjustme 13th-Sep-2008 06:36 pm (UTC)
Boric acid douches, vinegar douches, and I want to say diluted hydrogen peroxide douches are okay. The douches that aren't okay are ones with scents (flowers, rain) and are generally store bought. Things you make at home tend to be okay (and I'm sure someone will correct me if I'm wrong).
_venus_ 13th-Sep-2008 06:39 pm (UTC)
Okay, that's what I thought, thanks. I definitely don't plan to use any flowery store-bought douches ...my vagina doesn't even like scented pads, I'm sure my "lady problems" would just get a million times worse if I decided to go for that classic rain forest scent instead ...
iamjustme 13th-Sep-2008 06:41 pm (UTC)
*giggle* Classic Rain Forest Scent. Oh dear. I never understood that - I mean, shouldn't vulva smell like vulva? Why would I want a rain forest between my legs?
_venus_ 13th-Sep-2008 06:45 pm (UTC)
Exactly! And I'm pretty sure I've never slept with a girl or guy that would have said, "Oh, honey, your vulva smells so nice, it's just like the a warm spring breeze." I have to say, having it smell like the Atlantic Ocean right now is making me desperately miss the smell of ... vagina. Who knew!
iamjustme 13th-Sep-2008 07:12 pm (UTC)
As for how to get the douche into you, if you buy an enema kit or a douche kit you can use those bottles I believe - just fill them with your own solution, not the one they come with.
aeryn 13th-Sep-2008 06:56 pm (UTC)
I just bought acidophillus tablets today at CVS for this reason - I've got either a YI or BV or SOMETHING!!
mslsbth_all_his 13th-Sep-2008 09:38 pm (UTC)
Yeah, I guess it's once in a while it's okay, as long as you use the medicated or other type of douche. I forgot which ones are okay. I used to get these bacterial infections ALL the time, and they prescribed the douche and it never worked for me. The meds they gave me where Flagyl, but I hate meds like that.

I read on a medical website last night, possibly even Mayo, that Acidophillus has a good rate of curing Bacterial Vaginosis (SP?)
_venus_ 13th-Sep-2008 10:51 pm (UTC)
Yeah, I was prescribed Flagyl once before (several years ago) and it didn't do anything. :\ Thanks!
atalanta0jess 13th-Sep-2008 07:13 pm (UTC)
Douching as a part of your general hygiene routine, especially if you use store bought douches, is bad for you. Using a medicinal douche such as vinegar or boric acid is fine, assuming there is a need for it. I wouldn't recommend that people do it just for kicks of course, but its not bad for your vag in the same way that floralized scent bombs are.
atalanta0jess 13th-Sep-2008 07:16 pm (UTC)
Its not supposed to stay in there - it just flows out. Its a rinse, basically. :) You can use a douche bag, but I think most women find it easier to get either a turkey baster or a large (30 ml is good...I have a 60ml one that is actually too big) needle-less syringe - ask at the pharmacy and they will give or sell you one. They might ask what its for, but you can either tell the truth, or lie and say its for a craft project. ;) When you squirt the fluid in, make sure that it can freely flow out again - you don't want the syringe to form a seal with your vag so that the liquid is being held in with any force - it could get forced through your cervix, which is bad news. Probably this won't be an issue though, just something to keep in mind. I stick my finger in next to the syringe to make sure there's no seal. :)
sleepy_tears7 13th-Sep-2008 07:39 pm (UTC)
It is a squirt bottle.
You may want to hold off on the douche until you have cleared up the YI, otherwise you just risk pushing the yeast/bacteria further up there, instead of washing it out.

Get an OTC med, OR garlic for the days you are waiting to get to the clinic.
_venus_ 13th-Sep-2008 08:21 pm (UTC)
Oh, the yeast infection appears to be long gone. I'm just worried I have BV (or just a messed up pH) as a result. Would trying to balance it out in the meantime make that worse?
sleepy_tears7 13th-Sep-2008 08:52 pm (UTC)
If the YI is long gone, what kind of symptoms do you have that lead you to believe it is something else?

If the PH is off, using one of those douches, may only throw it off more. =/ And if you do have BV, the last thing you want to do is use a douche.
atalanta0jess 13th-Sep-2008 08:55 pm (UTC)
Douching with boric acid is a treatment for BV/YIs. Therefore, its totally totally fine to douche with boric acid (or vinegar, or diluted peroxide) when you have BV or a yeast infection, because that is the whole PURPOSE of using said douches...to get rid of the infection.
sleepy_tears7 13th-Sep-2008 09:07 pm (UTC)
See, my doctor always told me the opposite. He said the purpose of douches, are only for after your period, to flush out any old blood if you notice an odor...
mslsbth_all_his 13th-Sep-2008 09:39 pm (UTC)
Me too, every doctor I've ever gone to, well in the last ten years said NO douche at all...
atalanta0jess 13th-Sep-2008 09:41 pm (UTC)
Your doctor, quite frankly, was wrong. ;) Douching for cleanliness reasons like that is not great for you (although again, if you use vinegar, etc. its probably ok). Your body will clean itself out - it doesn't need a douche.

But for an infection, douching can be one way of getting the treatment up there. :) I'll find some sources later if you want, just let me know.
sleepy_tears7 13th-Sep-2008 09:42 pm (UTC)
Yeah, when you get a chance. Because I'm looking, I see a lot of conflicting information, and advertisements lol
h0rsegurrrl Source13th-Sep-2008 11:43 pm (UTC)
This is a source about the use of a peroxide douche for treating BV: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/14676737

Vinegar is approximately the same pH as a healthy vagina and can help rebalance the pH.

And douching with boric acid to help BV is very effective, there are sources all over the memories and on vaginapagina.com.
atalanta0jess Re: Source13th-Sep-2008 11:49 pm (UTC)
Thanks for chiming in. :)
cailin_t Re: Source4th-Feb-2009 09:30 pm (UTC)
I am going to try the peroxide tonight. When you say vinegar, is that just plain ole white vinegar or does it have to be the apple cider vinegar I hear about all the time on here? Also, you make it sound like it can/should be used alone, undiluted - is this true, or should I dilute it in water (provided the peroxide doesn't work)? Thank you.
h0rsegurrrl Re: Source4th-Feb-2009 10:01 pm (UTC)
I'm pretty sure you can use either white vinegar or apple cider, it doesn't matter, I've used both. I would dilute to half vinegar with half water, only because undiluted vinegar can sting a bit.
cailin_t Re: Source4th-Feb-2009 10:09 pm (UTC)
I've read one tablespoon to a cup of water, actually, but that seems like it would be barely acidic! I'll probably only dilute it to whatever I could stand - thank you.
atalanta0jess 13th-Sep-2008 11:49 pm (UTC)
this website says both that a vinegar and water douche can be used to prevent yeast, and that regular douching as part of your hygiene routine should be avoided. Here is advice from a midwife regarding the use of hydrogen peroxide douches as a treatment for yeast.

It is kind of hard to find good sources for this, quite frankly, since these are home remedies. Vulvapedia agrees with me though! :)
_venus_ 13th-Sep-2008 10:52 pm (UTC)
Eeks, so much conflicting info, LoL! Anyway, I just have the lingering fishy smell and a bit more discharge than normal (though the discharge itself isn't funny-colored for being the day after my period ended). No itching whatsoever, or any of the clumpy discharge like I have/had with a YI.
diekatze1 14th-Apr-2010 05:52 pm (UTC)
Odd, I went in for my yearly check-up and script renewal and my doctor said I probably had both? Except I only have the itchy and none of the fishy smell and a kind of snot/phlegmy discharge every once in awhile.
atalanta0jess 13th-Sep-2008 08:56 pm (UTC)
Unless she sprays the water in there with great pressure or doesn't allow it to come out again, she will not be "pushing it up further." Unless pressure is applied, the water will not go past her cervix.
pygmybugs 13th-Sep-2008 09:36 pm (UTC)
I use a diluted peroxide rinse for BV (it sounds like you've got a pretty classic one). Just plain old drugstore peroxide diluted with water in a turkey baster. I lay down in the shower, fill'er up, hold it for a second, then squeeze my stomach/keigels to push it out. Anything left dribbles out when you stand up.
_venus_ 13th-Sep-2008 10:49 pm (UTC)
Awesome. How much peroxide to water? And how often should I use it? Thanks so much :)
h0rsegurrrl 13th-Sep-2008 11:46 pm (UTC)
When I did it, I used straight peroxide (the store-bought stuff is already diluted to 3%) and I did it twice a day for two weeks, then every other day for a month after that (yeah, I had some really frustrating persistent cases of BV). But, you can probably do half peroxide to water, same frequency.
pygmybugs 13th-Sep-2008 11:47 pm (UTC)
I've read it's safe to use it straight, but I dilute it about half and half most of the time. I do it whenever I take a shower (so once a day). Usually I do it for 2 or 3 days, and it seems to clear everything up fabulously. Also, I like that it kills the smell right away.
ride_a_swell Hydrogen Peroxide Douche14th-Sep-2008 03:23 am (UTC)
I used a hydrogen peroxide douche (not sure what i had but it worked for either a YI or BV...i did not have insurance at the time)...did it once a day until symptoms subsided...grand total of twice. I liked it better than borax because i felt there was way more room for error and i always have hyrdogen peroxide at home. Used a reusuable douche i got at CVS. it's like a big ballon attached to a plastic tube. squeeze the balloon part (which houses the liquid), not too hard because you COULD push the infection up past your cervix, and that was that.
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