Bacterial vaginosis (BV) and yeast infections are quite similar in the fact that the symptoms are quite similar and both conditions may lead to a condition called vaginitis.
Bacterial vaginosis and yeast infections however are not the same condition, they have different causes and treatments.
Read on to learn more about bacterial vaginosis vs yeast infections, including similarities and differences.
**The symptoms of vaginitis include: **
Due to the fact that bacterial vaginosis and yeast infections are the leading causes of vaginitis, it can be easy to confuse one with the other.
One of the leading differences between bacterial vaginosis and yeast infections is that bacterial vaginosis is caused by an overgrowth of a bacteria called Gardnerella vaginalis. Yeast infections are caused by the overgrowth of a fungus called Candida albicans.
Many women will not experience the signs or symptoms of bacterial vaginosis. When they do occur, the most common symptoms of bacterial vaginosis include:
Yeast infections are also known as vaginal candidiasis, 3 in 4 women will experience a yeast infection at some point in their lives. It is more common to experience symptoms of a yeast infection than it is to experience symptoms of bacterial vaginosis.
Some of the most common symptoms of a yeast infection include:
An untreated yeast infection may lead to worsening symptoms which may include:
Bacterial vaginosis is often caused by an imbalance in the normal bacterial flora that lives in the vagina. Under normal circumstances, a helpful bacteria called Lactobacillus is the most significant component of the microflora. In some cases, there is an imbalance that lowers the amount of Lactobacillus inside the vagina, allowing Gardnerella vaginalis to grow in large amounts and cause bacterial vaginosis.
There are some things that may lead to a higher risk of this over-growth of bacteria including:
Yeast infections are caused by an overgrowth of fungus in the vagina, this fungus is called candida albicans.
The vagina contains both bacteria and fungus. Certain bacteria (lactobacillus) act to prevent an overgrowth of yeast. When the bacterial/fungal balance becomes imbalanced or candida albicans penetrates vaginal tissue, it may lead to the signs and symptoms of a yeast infection.
Some of the most common causes of a yeast infection include:
Treatment for bacterial vaginosis involves a course of anti-biotics to balance the level of bacteria in the body.
The treatment for uncomplicated yeast infections is a 1-3 day treatment that includes an over-the-counter anti-fungal cream or an anti-fungal suppository.
Complicated yeast infections require more intensive treatment that includes: