Like they say, happiness is having a scratch for every itch, and when it comes to vaginal itching it doesn’t get any closer to the truth. When one suffers from a persistent vaginal itch, her emotions run the gamut from (completely understandable) embarrassment at having to scratch in public because it is just sooo intolerable to unbridled horror at the nagging pain, redness, irritation and sleep deprivation.
Yes, it will not only deprive you of sleep, but also ruin your life if you keep ignoring it. Do I have your attention? Yes? Great. Now read my tried-and-true home remedies for vaginal itching!
Causes of vaginal itching
The itching may be accompanied by redness, irritation, burning sensations, and swelling in the genital area. You may also have vaginal discharge that smells bad (You know the joke that goes, “Blind man at fish market says ‘Hi girls’” – yeah, that’s exactly what it smells like) or abnormal vaginal discharge. There is often a burning feeling while urinating as well as discomfort during sex.
Signs and symptoms
Women who are going through menopause or have gone through it face a great risk of experiencing this uncomfortable condition. This is because levels of estrogen drop during and after menopause, resulting in atrophy of the vagina. This is associated with thinning of the mucosa, which can cause dryness, which may in turn result in itching and irritation.
You need to have one or two tests done (microbiology) and that’s all. Most health insurance plans cover them. You do not need to pay and/or take dozens of tests for all imaginable STDs.
Sexually transmitted diseases are another common cause of vaginal itching. A variety of treatable, banal diseases such as chlamydia, gonorrhea, genital warts, trichomoniasis and genital herpes (not treatable but still no big deal – really!) can cause vaginal itching. Do not panic! If you have had unprotected sex with someone you haven’t really known that long, just go and get tested.
Imbalances of good and bad bacteria in the vagina can cause a variety of issues and a yeast infection is the least of it. Sometimes the itching is accompanied by a foul-smelling, abnormal discharge that is whitish or yellowish in color, and / or foamy. This is a sure sign of bacterial vaginosis. To be fair, though, BV doesn’t always have symptoms.
According to the Mayo Clinic, 75% of all women have or have had a yeast infection in the past.
If you have recurrent bouts of itching down under, you probably have a yeast infection, especially if you tend to have unprotected sex. It is important to note that it may happen even in a monogamous relationship. Don’t go blaming people; it really is a normal occurrence. Sometimes it happens when you have been taking antibiotics because they kill both the good and the bad bacteria.
Itching and redness in the genital area may also be caused by psoriasis, eczema and other skin diseases. Eczema is a rash that is a common symptom of an allergy or asthma.
Urinary incontinence may cause vaginal itching and irritation, as could diabetes.
Another cause of vaginal itching is pinworm infection, but this is more likely to happen to children. Unbearable stress and a weak immune system can increase the probability of vaginal itching.
Chemical irritants can induce vaginal itching, redness and burning. Some of the most common ones include some types of soap (you might have an allergic reaction), douches, bubble baths, creams, scented toilet paper, feminine sprays, topical contraceptives, ointments, fabric softeners and detergents.
Women of all races, nationalities, ages and sizes suffer from vaginal itching once in a while. Common causes include yeast infection, bacterial infection, chemicals, stress, menopause and sexually transmitted diseases.
To stop vaginal itching, you need to try our home remedies for vaginal itching, maintain proper hygiene, follow a healthy diet and lead a healthy lifestyle. Consult your doctor in the event of severe symptoms.
Most of the time, a good home remedy will help treat vaginal itching, regardless of the cause.
1. Apple Cider Vinegar Ensures Instant Relief
Apple cider vinegar can help relieve vaginal itching – you won’t believe how super it is. This remedy will calm the irritated skin, guaranteeing instant relief. Vinegar has been used for medicinal purposes for ages - if you can’t get apple cider vinegar, it will work with other types as well, but apple cider vinegar is the best.
One teaspoon of apple cider vinegar or another type of vinegar
Half a cup of water
- Add the vinegar to a glass of warm water, let it cool to room temperature and rub on the itchy skin using a cotton ball.
- Do this once a day in the morning. Stop when the itching subsides, for example if it has given you a break for a couple of hours.
Note: Apple cider vinegar has a host of other health benefits as well. It is very efficient in treating heart problems and diabetes, aids weight loss and reduces blood sugar levels.
2. Indian Lilac – Instantaneous Itch Relief
Indian lilac is famous for its anti-bacterial and anti-microbial properties. It guarantees immediate relief from vaginal itching.
You can make a paste from Indian lilac leaves and apply it on the irritated area, and supplement this treatment with one of the following remedies, or both:
A cup of Indian lilac leaves
One tablespoon of ground turmeric
- Grind the leaves, mix with the turmeric and apply on the irritated area.
- Leave on for 15 minutes and wash off with cold water.
- Do this a few times a week until the itching stops.
A cup of Indian lilac leaves
Three cups of water
- Boil the leaves in the water until the water evaporates to a third.
- Rinse your vagina with the boiled water twice – three times a day.
3. Carom seeds and salt water – an unlikely, but dazzling pair
Carom seeds and salt water are a commonly applied natural remedy for instant relief from vaginal itching.
One teaspoon of crushed carom seeds
A cup of water
- Boil the water and add some sea salt. Wait five minutes, then add the carom seeds (also known as ajwain). Let the mixture cool to room temperature. Using a cotton swab, dab on the irritated area.
- Another option is to soak a washcloth in the mixture and place it over the area. Leave it on for ten minutes. Repeat as needed, but at least three times a day.
- You can also add a few drops of eucalyptus essential oil to the mixture. It is a natural anti-inflammatory substance that is definitely going to help against itching. However, you need to get real essential oil for this.
Note: This remedy is not recommended for pregnant women, people with high blood pressure or central nervous system disorders.
4. Garlic beats skin diseases
Garlic is helpful in treating all kinds of skin diseases and infections, including yeast infections, which may or may not be the cause of your vaginal itching and irritation.
Half a teaspoon of turmeric
Half a teaspoon of crushed garlic cloves
- Mix the crushed garlic cloves and turmeric powder and make a paste. Mix with water until you get a homogenous mix.
- Using a cotton ball, dab a bit of the mixture on the irritated area and leave on for ten minutes, then wash off and dry.
- Do this twice a day.
Both turmeric and garlic have an antibacterial and anti-inflammatory property that prevents vaginal itching from coming back. You can learn more about the health benefits of garlic here.
Note: This remedy has been known to exhibit the opposite effect in some cases. In other words, if your itch gets more intense or uncomfortable as a result of this treatment, stop at once. It would also be advisable to see a doctor.
5. Honey and baking soda – combined home remedy power
One of the oldest natural remedies in the world is honey. Only baking soda is older! Honey and baking soda are not only extremely beneficial, but also affordable. The ethereal oils and alcohol in honey help reduce vaginal itching, and baking soda neutralizes the irritation.
One teaspoon of honey
One teaspoon of baking soda
- Mix the honey and baking soda, forming balls about half a centimeter in diameter.
- Put on a plate, cover with foil and place in the fridge. For this remedy, you will need three balls a day.
- Put one in your vagina in the morning, afternoon and evening before going to bed. Let dissolve. It would be a good idea to insert the balls when lying down and wait ten to fifteen minutes to take effect.
6. Baking soda and lemon are a proven remedy
Baking soda is a great natural remedy for vaginal itchiness, as you already read. But why? It neutralizes “bad” bacteria in your vagina that is causing itchiness and irritation. In fact, most anti-itch creams and medication contain baking soda for this very reason. This natural antacid is even more effective in combination with lemon!
The acidity of lemon facilitates a compensatory response of the body where the pH increases, going from more acidic (low) to more alkaline (high). Baking soda also increases the body’s pH, creating a hostile environment for bad yeast and other bacteria.
Click here for more information about the health benefits of lemon juice!
The juice of half a lemon
Half a teaspoon of baking soda
One glass of water
- Add the baking soda to the lemon juice. It will start to fizz.
- Now add the water and stir until the baking soda is fully dissolved.
- Dab a cotton ball in this mixture and lay on the irritated area twice a day, several times a week or until the itching stops.
7. Yogurt kills bad bacteria
Yogurt is the best, most effective probiotic out there – we mean the plain, unsweetened kind. Yogurt with active cultures is an excellent remedy to stop discomfort in the genital area. Active cultures counteract vaginal itching and burning by keeping the infection from spreading. They kill bad bacteria and help good ones grow.
Some plain, unsweetened yogurt
- Dip a tampon in the yogurt and insert it in your vagina for at least fifty minutes, twice daily.
- At first, your discomfort will be exacerbated. You will begin to feel relief on the third day. But, don’t stop doing this – you need to do it daily for at least two weeks to make sure the itching doesn’t come back.
Note: Supplement this treatment by eating plain, unsweetened yogurt as often as possible.
How to prevent vaginal itching
If you want to make sure the vaginal itching won’t come back, keep applying these home remedies – you can switch from one to another for as long as you like. This can and should be a lifelong process. If not - vaginal itching is here to stay!
Good hygiene can prevent it in the vast majority of cases. Steps you can take at home to prevent this discomfort include:
Cleaning your vaginal area with warm water and a gentle cleanser
Changing damp or wet clothes right after exercising or swimming
Avoiding scented lotions, soaps and bubble baths
Wearing 100% cotton underwear only – these are bacteria-resistant - and changing it every day
Avoiding sprays, douches and other likely chemical irritants
Consuming probiotic supplements and / or yogurt to minimize the chance of developing a yeast infection
Wiping from front to back and washing with water at room temperature after number 2
Using condoms – unless you are allergic to latex condoms, of course. In this case, use condoms made from another material.
Did you like our list of home remedies for vaginal itching? In most cases, vaginal itching is no cause for concern unless it is changing your life in some way and / or depriving you of sleep. If none of our remedies work, it may signal a more serious underlying condition, so you should see a doctor and receive proper medical treatment.
Please tell us what you think in the comments and share this article so you can help other people out there who are suffering from vaginal itching. It can and does take a toll on women’s self-esteem, confidence and intimate prospects.