A healthy vaginal microbiome is composed of 90% “good” bacteria, primarily of the Lactobacilli family, with the species Lactobacillus crispatus and Lactobacillus iners being in greatest abundance.
Why is this important?
These “good” bacteria help the vagina to self-clean and fight off infection by producing lactic acid and hydrogen peroxide which maintains a pH of 3.5.
In this acidic environment, it is difficult–if not impossible–for bacteria to bind to epithelial cells and pathogens such as E. coli, candida and Staph to grow.
However, this vaginal environment is a fragile one and can get disrupted by any host of environmental and lifestyle factors, causing the pH to rise and the vaginal biome to enter a dangerous state of “dysbiosis”, or imbalance, increasing the risk of diseases like STI’s, Pelvic Inflammatory Disease and ovarian cancer. There are some common reasons for Vaginal Dysbiosis.