5 Home Remedies To Get Rid Of BV Naturally (Bacterial Vaginosis)

Bacterial vaginosis (BV) is the most common vaginal condition that affects women of childbearing age. 

Studies show that as much as 1 in 3 women is affected by BV globally.

BV is believed to occur when some of the bacteria that normally live in your vagina (normal flora) grow excessively. 

Signs and symptoms of BV include whitish or gray vaginal discharge with a fishy odor, itching, and pain during sex.

Antibiotics are commonly prescribed by healthcare professionals to treat BV due to their effectiveness.

However, many women experience recurrence, and some may have to deal with serious side effects. 

If you have concerns about antibiotic treatment or wish to explore natural alternatives, it’s advisable to consult with your healthcare professional. 

Read on to learn more about natural remedies to get rid of BV at home.

How to get rid of BV naturally

Since BV is caused by an imbalance of normal flora and an overgrowth of bacteria, remedies for the condition should help fight bacterial growth and help promote the balance of normal flora. 

Some natural products that may help do this include:

1) Probiotics

The term probiotic refers to a substance that contains live bacteria and yeasts that may help improve or maintain your normal flora. 

Eating more probiotic foods may help your body balance the normal flora in your vagina and fight the bacteria causing vaginosis. 

One study showed that probiotics may have both short- and long-term benefits when treating BV.

Some rich sources of probiotics include yogurt, kefir, some cheeses, sour milk, pickles, sauerkraut, tempeh, etc. There are also probiotic supplements available.

If you want to enjoy the benefits of probiotics, it is best to eat them. Applying them to your vagina or the surrounding area is not advisable. It could cause irritation and possibly promote the growth of harmful bacteria.

2) Garlic supplements

Garlic is known to have antibacterial properties and may serve as a natural remedy for BV. 

One study showed that garlic supplements were as effective at treating BV as metronidazole, one of the first-line antibiotics for BV. 

If you want to use garlic supplements for BV, please speak with your doctor. You should never apply garlic or garlic products to your vagina.

organic garlic supplement

3) Boric acid

Boric acid is a white powder that is produced from an element called boron. It is sometimes used as an ingredient in household cleaning agents and insecticides. It has antibacterial and antifungal properties.

There are vaginal suppositories that contain boric acid that are intended to help balance vaginal pH and treat conditions like BV. 

Some boric acid suppositories may contain additional ingredients like aloe vera and tea tree oil.

Some studies show that, when used with antibiotics, boric acid may help cure cases of recurrent BV. 

However, there is limited research on the effectiveness of boric acid for the treatment of BV on its own.

How to use boric acid

If you want to try boric acid, be sure to speak with your doctor first. You should never take it orally as it is toxic when consumed. Also, avoid using boric acid if you’re pregnant or breastfeeding.

Boric acid suppositories often contain 600-milligram doses and should be inserted once daily for seven to 14 days. 

However, your doctor may recommend a different treatment plan for you based on your case. 

Here’s how to apply it:

  • Wash your hands thoroughly and dry them.
  • Using clean and dry fingers (or an applicator), insert a boric acid capsule into your vagina. You can push it as far up as comfortable.
  • Lying down with your knees bent or squatting slightly may help make insertion easier.
  • You may choose to wear a panty liner after application in case you experience lots of discharge as a result of the suppository.

You should avoid sex when using boric acid suppositories to treat BV.

4) Apple cider vinegar

Studies have shown that apple cider vinegar has antimicrobial effects. It is also believed that, because of its acidic nature, it may promote acidification of the vagina and improve vaginal pH, thus reducing the risk of conditions like BV.

There are various ways people use apple cider vinegar for BV. These include drinking it orally, taking baths in water with vinegar, and applying it vaginally. 

In one study, women were asked about their experiences with home remedies for BV. Some women reported that vinegar helped improve their symptoms. However, there is currently no scientific evidence that proves the effectiveness of vinegar for BV.

5) Tea tree oil

Tea tree oil is a popular essential oil that is used as a remedy for various skin, nail, and scalp conditions like eczema, acne, and dandruff. 

Various studies have shown that tea tree oil has antibacterial and antifungal properties. However, there is currently no evidence that tea tree oil or products containing it can help treat bacterial vaginosis.

It is important to note that the oil may cause irritation and allergic reactions in some people. Speak with your doctor if you want to use tea tree oil as a treatment for BV.

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Medical treatments for bacterial vaginosis

The mainstay of treatment for BV is antibiotics, which are meant to kill off the overgrowing bacteria and restore the balance of your normal flora. 

These antibiotics include:


Metronidazole, sold under the brand names Flagyl and Metrogel-Vaginal, is usually the first-line treatment for BV. 

It comes in a pill form for oral consumption and as a gel that can be applied to the vagina. Which form you choose to take is based on your preference.

If you choose to use the pill, you have to take it for five to seven days. The gel should be applied every night before you go to bed for five days. Follow your doctor’s prescription. 

Avoid alcohol when taking metronidazole for at least 48 hours after you complete the regimen.


Clindamycin (brand names – Cleocin and Clindesse) is another effective BV treatment option. The drug is available as a pill and as a cream that can be applied to the vagina. 

For the pill, doctors typically prescribe 300mg of Clindamycin to be taken twice a day for seven days. If you use the cream, you’ll have to apply it to your vagina before you go to bed for up to seven days.

It is important to note that clindamycin cream can weaken latex condoms for up to three days after you stop using the medication. 

It is generally best to avoid sexual activity while being treated for BV. If you can’t, you could try other birth control options while using clindamycin cream.


Tinidazole is part of the drug group that metronidazole belongs to. It is sold under the brand name Tindamax and is available as a pill. 

Your doctor will prescribe an appropriate regimen for you. It is usually 2g once a day for two days or 1g once a day for five days. 

It is best to take tinidazole with food to reduce the risk of adverse side effects, and you must avoid alcohol while using it.


Sold under the brand name Solosec, Secnidazole is another treatment option for BV. It is available as a pill, which is usually taken in a single dose. 

While it is more expensive than other options, it may be a good choice for you if you prefer taking only one dose. You should avoid alcohol while using secnidazole.

Your doctor will recommend the best treatment option for you. They may also recommend some lifestyle modifications to help reduce the risk of recurrence. 

These include avoiding douching, avoiding certain foods, wearing breathable underwear, using barrier protection during sex, and practicing proper genital hygiene.

Be sure to take your antibiotics for as long as your healthcare provider prescribes. Don’t stop just because you feel better. 

Failure to complete your antibiotic regimen increases the risk of recurrence.


  • Bacterial vaginosis is an extremely common condition that affects women all over the globe. Antibiotics are the mainstay of BV treatment. However, recurrence is common, and side effects can be bothersome.
  • Home remedies for BV, like probiotics, garlic supplements, boric acid, and ACV, may help get rid of your bacterial vaginosis naturally. 
  • While the scientific evidence supporting the efficacy of many of these remedies is limited, some individuals find them worth exploring.
  • It is important to speak with your doctor about any remedies you want to try and to seek their advice if symptoms are persistent.

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  5. Surapaneni S, Akins R, Sobel JD. Recurrent Bacterial Vaginosis: An Unmet Therapeutic Challenge. Experience With a Combination Pharmacotherapy Long-Term Suppressive Regimen. Sex Transm Dis. 2021 Oct 1;48(10):761-765. doi: 10.1097/OLQ.0000000000001420. PMID: 34110746; PMCID: PMC8460079.
  6. Carson CF, Hammer KA, Riley TV. Melaleuca alternifolia (Tea Tree) oil: a review of antimicrobial and other medicinal properties. Clin Microbiol Rev. 2006 Jan;19(1):50-62. doi: 10.1128/CMR.19.1.50-62.2006. PMID: 16418522; PMCID: PMC1360273.
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