What have I got – yeast or BV – symptom checker

Figuring out if what you have is bacterial vaginosis or a yeast infection is easy: it’s all about the symptoms. You just need to investigate a few key themes, but just BV or yeast may not be the only questions you need to ask yourself.

BV is:

  • Fishy discharge
  • Watery/grey/thin discharge, no chunks, all looks the same
  • Not itchy, sore or inflamed
  • May appear after sex with a new person, your period, or for no reason you can think of
  • Can be hard to treat and antibiotic resistant due to biofilm formation
  • You need a test to get an accurate diagnosis (ask for PCR testing to exclude aerobic vaginitis or something else)
  • At-home BV treatments

Yeast is:

  • Itchy
  • Thick, white discharge
  • Discharge doesn’t smell bad at all
  • Can get quite raw
  • Often appears after antibiotics or if you eat a lot of bread/sugar or drink a lot of beer
  • Very diet-related – yeast starts in your intestines and works it’s way down
  • Usually easy to treat
  • At-home yeast treatments

________

Aerobic vaginitis is:

  • Itchy
  • Inflamed
  • Sore
  • Smells bad – may be fishy, may be like rotten meat, ammonia, or faeces
  • Usually extremely antibiotic resistant bacteria involved
  • Sometimes very hard to treat
  • Requires accurate diagnosis (may be misdiagnosed or co-diagnosed with BV, get PCR testing)
  • Learn more about aerobic vaginitis

Trich is:

  • A sexually transmitted bacterial infection
  • Fishy, foul or musty odour
  • Greenish discharge
  • May be inflamed
  • Easy to treat with antibiotics
  • Learn more about trich

Lactobacilli overgrowth syndrome (cytolytic vaginosis) is:

  • Looks just like a yeast infection
  • Thick white discharge
  • Smells normal
  • Itchy
  • Sore
  • Doesn’t respond to antifungal treatments at all
  • Gets worse in the week or two before your period
  • Feels better after baking soda douche
  • Found most often in women who have blood sugar dysregulation and oestrogen excess or have just been treated with vaginal or oral probiotics
  • If you are normal, will resolve itself within a few weeks – the vagina is self-limiting with food availability
  • At-home cytolytic vaginosis treatments

 

 

Jessica Lloyd - Naturopathic Practitioner, BHSc(N)

Jessica Lloyd - Naturopathic Practitioner, BHSc(N)

Jessica is a degree-qualified naturopath (BHSc) specialising in vulvovaginal health and disease, based in Melbourne, Australia.

Jessica is the owner and lead naturopath of My Vagina, and is a member of the:

  • International Society for the Study of Vulvovaginal Disease (ISSVD)
  • International Society for the Study of Women's Sexual Health (ISSWSH)
  • National Vulvodynia Association (NVA) Australia
  • New Zealand Vulvovaginal Society (ANZVS)
  • Australian Traditional Medicine Society (ATMS)
Read more about Jessica and My Vagina's origin story.