What Happens If You Leave BV Too Long?

What Happens If You Leave BV Too Long?

Suppose you contract a bacterial infection, like Bacterial Vaginosis. In that case, it can be quite difficult to determine the source of the infection as well as notice that something is off balance with your intimate bacteria. An infection of this nature is not always noticeable in its early stages and could develop into a larger problem if unknowingly left untreated. It could be a long time before you can even diagnose yourself with a potential bacterial-related infection as many symptoms may take time to notice. In many cases, a bacterial infection like Bacterial Vaginosis will not lead to any alarming or long-term side effects on your health but it should not be left untreated for too long! 

How long can BV linger? 

If you can detect that something is off with your vaginal health, that turns out to be Bacterial Vaginosis, then it can be easily treated with antibiotics and should usually go away within a couple of days. The severity of your infection will impact how long it takes for your BV to clear up, therefore, the typical treatment time frame of 5-7 days might be slightly extended. If your BV infection is caught early on then you might be able to clear up your BV within just three days with the right course of antibiotics, treatment gels and supporting supplements like Probiotics. One of the biggest annoyances with BV is that it can linger and just when you think your treatment has cleared it up; it might be ‘hiding’ and not clear up entirely. Bacterial Vaginosis is a build-up of ‘bad’ intimate bacteria which cannot be seen therefore easy to think it’s been cleared up, especially when you are taking medication to do so! Unfortunately, Bacterial Vaginosis can linger which is why follow-up care is a key part of the treatment, safety and prevention process. Bacterial Vaginosis needs to be treated quickly, efficiently and effectively to ensure that the ‘bad’ bacteria does not linger causing chronic or repeated BV which is not just a nuisance but can also affect your intimate health over time. BV needs to be treated as soon as it is identified. 

One of our recent blog posts titled: What Is The Main Cause of BV explores what you might be doing that could unknowingly be causing you to get BV frequently as well as why the ‘bad’ bacteria could still linger. If you think you have BV then we highly advise you to speak to a medical professional and start a course of appropriate treatment immediately. 

Will BV go away if untreated?

A woman who has professional medical confirmation, or strongly believes (due to their symptoms) that she has Bacterial Vaginosis should not leave it untreated! In a very small number of cases, BV will go away without treatment, but not treating the infection can lead to persistent infection and a greater increased risk to your health. Women with untreated BV can increase their own risk of getting a sexually transmitted infection such as Gonorrhea or Chlamydia (to name a few) as well as affect fertility. Bacterial Vaginosis is not something any woman should feel embarrassed or ashamed about as it can arise for several reasons not relating to sexual activity. If you do feel embarrassed or would prefer to keep your BV private you should still seek out appropriate treatment if you are experiencing the following symptoms:

  • A change in discharge - thin consistency that is white or grey
  • Pain, itching, or burning in or around the outside of the vagina;
  • A strong fish-like odour, especially after sex;
  • Burning when peeing

You can buy effective BV treatment online without needing to consult a face-to-face doctor as there are treatments readily available in the form of vaginal gel treatments or oral antibiotics. The chances of a mild or more severe BV infection going away on its own are low, so treatment is always advised including follow-up treatment that could be a women's probiotics… 

What are the symptoms of untreated BV?

Above we included a list of the common symptoms of Bacterial Vaginosis that can occur at any stage of infection. These are typically the symptoms to look out for if you think you might have BV but these can also highlight an infection that has not been effectively treated or has re-occurred in a short period. If your discharge is still not usual, and you are still experiencing discomfort or pain in and around your vaginal area then this is likely linked to your treatment not being taken for long enough to ensure your BV was fully totally cleared up. Untreated BV is typically caused by a previous infection not clearing up properly and the main causes of BV still occurring (often unknowingly). Therefore the symptoms of BV are typically the same even if treatment was taken to clear up an infection; chances are the follow-up prevention was not effective. BV needs to not just be treated until symptoms clear up, but also managed to ensure you do not get repeated or chronic BV. 

Suffering with BV long-term can put you at risk of many other infections and in some cases even increase your chances of contracting STDs…

Can BV turn into STD if left too long?

In most cases, BV does not cause other health problems, so long as it is not left untreated for too long. BV causes a disruption to your intimate bacteria, which could increase your risk of STDs like Gonorrhea or Chlamydia. Therefore BV will not ‘turn’ into an STD if left too long but can increase your risk of contracting an STD! 

That is why you should always get right onto sourcing appropriate treatment for BV as soon as your notice any symptoms. An annual gynaecology visit can help you keep on top of your intimate health. Be sure to take all of the advised medication as well as be aware of what it is you should not do to prevent recurring or chronic BV. Our Health Insider Blog is full of helpful posts that go over BV treatment and causes in more depth, should you require more advice.