Research published this week by Balance Activ reveals women are more aware of bikini waxing (67%) and vajazzles (48%) than they are about intimate health, with nearly two thirds of women questioned (61%) unaware or unsure of health problems that could lead to fertility problems, miscarriage and increased risk of STI's.
BV (Bacterial Vaginosis) affects one in three women* and because very few know about it the symptoms are often confused with other infections. It is twice as prevalent as thrush and if left untreated during pregnancy the condition can lead to serious implications:
- Pregnant women with BV are six times more likely to miscarry and twice as likely to give birth prematurely than other women
- It's thought BV is responsible for one in three of all premature births in the UK
- BV can put women at risk of contracting STIs such as Gonorrhoea and Chlamydia
The research, carried out to coincide with National BV Day (Tuesday 16th April), reveals 63% of women feel angry that more information on intimate health conditions is not made available. Health experts are now calling for more awareness of intimate health and the serious side effects that can be the result of untreated conditions.
As part of National BV Day women can access videos featuring Dr Dawn Harper explaining the key symptoms of BV, and how to treat them quickly and easily at home using lactic acid pessaries or gel. The videos advise that BV is not a sexually transmitted disease nor linked to poor hygiene, but is in fact a condition caused by changes in the vagina's pH balance. Triggers can include the use of scented soaps and bubble bath.