The human vaginal microbiota is composed of a balance of both beneficial microbes and opportunistic pathogens, including bacteria and yeast. In a healthy vagina, the microbiota exists in a mutualistic relationship with the body.
Both internal and external factors can disrupt the balance of the vaginal microbiome. When there is an imbalance of the vaginal microflora, this is called vaginal dysbiosis. One feature of vaginal dysbiosis is an increased vaginal pH, which can be caused by reduced concentrations of lactic acid.
Lactobacillus species, commonly found in the female reproductive tract, are believed to play an important role in the vaginal microbiome because of their production of lactic acid, which helps maintain the vaginal pH.
The composition of the vaginal microbiome is constantly changing.
Hormonal fluctuations throughout the women’s reproductive life (menstruation and pregnancy), medications (antibiotics and hormonal contraceptives), sex, and vaginal douching are all factors that can disrupt the normal flora.
To maintain the balance of the vaginal flora, women may benefit from a daily probiotic formulation that contains Lactobacillus strains to help maintain the microflora in a normal range and help support vaginal health.
Lactobacillus are the dominant bacteria species found in a healthy and balanced vagina. This bacteria species thrives in an anaerobic environment, like the vagina, and produces byproducts such as lactic acid, hydrogen peroxide, and bacteriocins. As the main source of lactic acid production in the vagina, Lactobacillus species help maintain the pH of the vagina below.
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