BV is a vaginal infection that happens when the natural balance of bacteria in the vagina is upset, usually by inflammation. In BV, lactobacilli, the bacteria that keep the lining of the vagina healthy, decrease and anaerobic bacteria in the vagina increase.
Anaerobic bacteria are potentially harmful, but lactobacilli normally keep them in check. If the number of lactobacilli decrease, anaerobic bacteria can overgrow, creating an imbalance in the vagina that sets the stage for bacterial vaginosis.
BV is the most common vaginal condition in women ages 15-44, though women at any age can get this infection. Scientists don’t know what causes BV, but many think it is somehow linked to sexual activity. Although any woman can get BV, the condition is more common among women who have a sexually transmitted infection, have several sex partners, or use an intrauterine device. You cannot get BV from toilet seats, bedding, or swimming pools. Read More