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gentle natural suggestions for vaginal infection in pre-schooler

post #1 of 13
Thread Starter 
Hope you mamas have some ideas.
My little girl has very, very sensitive skin.
Lately she has been sneaking off and peeing without wiping. This has resulted in a mild bacterial infection.
I really don't want to subject her to harsh medical treatments (antibiotics etc).
Any ideas of a gentle natural cure (we already put baking soda in her bath every time).
Help please!
post #2 of 13
Actually, peeing and not wiping doesn't do much at all - your baking soda bath may though In fact, by peeing and not wiping, she may be intuitively trying to get herself back to normal!

The pH of a healthy vagina, just like skin, should be on the acidic side. Baking soda is a pH of 8.2, slightly on the basic side, compared to water, which is neutral at 7.0. If she's sitting and playing in baking soda water for extended periods, she may be drying herself out and changing the pH of the vagina. When the pH changes, the vagina is no longer acidic and is no longer inhospitable to bacteria, yeast, and other things.

To get her back on track, skip the baking soda in her bath. While she is at home, wipe her a few times with diluted apple cider vinegar. If the area is tender and she squawks, make the solution even more diluted and keep making it stronger each day. The final strength of the apple cider vinegar should be 1/2 water to 1/2 apple cider vinegar. For best results, use distilled or pre-boiled/then cooled water, so you don't have any bacteria in it.

Make sure you're not using any fabric softeners or using too much detergent in your laundry as well. Too much detergent leaves deposits on clothing, and that could be irritating her. If you haven't already, switch to dye free and perfume free detergent. If her clothing doesn't have major stains in it, children's and babies' clothing can be washed in baking soda, actually (adults can wash their clothing in baking soda too). Baking soda is milder in pH than detergent. Make sure all her underwear is cotton and that her jeans/pants and clothing aren't too snug, the vagina area needs some room to breathe so to speak; rather, it's for air to circulate.

As a treat for her, have her eat some yogurt too, hopefully a low-sugar one.

Hopefully she'll feel better soon.
post #3 of 13
I agree with Spastica that I don't think urine would be causing a bacterial infection. The urinary tract is a closed system. Unless she has a urinary tract infection, urine is sterile. Normal urine pH of may range from 4.6 to 8. Urine is usually more acidic in the morning. Leaving urine on the sensitive skin of the labia may cause some irritation but it wouldn't be caused by bacteria. The vagina is like a glorious self-cleaing oven. When the pH is normal, everything exists in harmony. If her pH is out of whack, then that can allow bacteria or yeast to grow. Spastica made good suggestions. Natural fabric underwear, avoid harsh laundry detergents, avoid the baking soda in the bath, always change out of wet undergarments quickly as they provide prime breeding ground for yeast. You might even want to give her some extended naked time to give things time to breath and heal themselves. When DD had a diaper rash that wouldn't go away, we had really good success with TTO mixed with olive oil in a 1:1 ratio. I applied it to her nether regions several times a day. I used it myself once for some vaginal itching and inflammation and it did kind of burn a little. It didn't seem to bother DD but if it does, just add more olive oil. I've also heard that honey works well for treating yeast infections but haven't tried it myself yet. You can also try to apply plain yogurt with active cultures directly to the labia which will help inhibit the overgrowth of yeast.
post #4 of 13
My 6 year old DD has always had problems, with infections and sensitive skin.
I switched their ( i have 3 girls) soap to Dr. Bronners baby mild, wash their clothes (especially undies) in a FREE of everything detergent, and make sure she gets a lot of Yogurt. Take off undies to go to bed..
You could do baking soda in the bath, but maybe once a week..if taking baths, make sure it is just to get washed and out..sitting in soapy water isn't real good for them. We do mostly quick showers now. Moisturizer is just a bit of sweet almond oil or Jojoba oil...
We have only had one minor irritation in the last 6 months...that only when my girls were staying at MIL's and she washed their clothes in a regular detergent and she put her undies back on and by 8 pm that night she was all red and irritated.
Good Luck, i know how upsetting this can be.
post #5 of 13
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the advice.
I'm a little peeved about the baking soda. I actually got that advice from a doctor:.
Just goes to show you what doctors are good for.
I already use free of everything detergent, only cotton undies, no undies at night. The yoghurt would be a no-go because she can't tolerate ANY dairy. But maybe a probiotic? I could try the vinegar too.
And while urine is sterile, it is also an ideal medium for bacteria (which is why the floors of men's rooms are swarming with germs). Urine is only sterile when it is freshly expelled or contained in a sterile container after being expelled.
Maybe something other than the wiping problem is creating the issue, who knows.
We'll try your suggestions! Thanks!
post #6 of 13
Could you try goat's or sheep's milk yoghurt, or is that right out too? Sometimes people with dairy sensitivities respond acceptably to non-cow dairy stuff.
post #7 of 13
I know urine sitting around can't be a good thing, I just meant to point out that the urine itself wouldn't have bacteria in it upon exit unless she had a UTI. Sorry if I wasn't clear on that. If your DD is dairy sensitive, I'd stay away from goat/sheep milk too. My DD couldn't tolerate milk proteins from any animal. When DD had some yeast going on, I bought a powdered probiotic and just sprinkled it on her labia. It worked for us.
post #8 of 13
You can also throw about a cup of vinegar (White or ACV) into her bath water. This helps a lot and doesn't actually smell bad either.
post #9 of 13
And there is the option of soy yogurt-- my daughter loves Trader Joe's soy yogurt.
Janine
post #10 of 13
I agree with the other poster's suggestions for treatments.

Question:

Is it a real vaginal infection (ie, discharge from her vagina) or is it irritation in the outer area (labia) like a diaper rash (from wearing wet clothing next to her skin)??

How do you know she isn't wiping? Are her underwear wet? Is she, perhaps, wiping, but doing it incorrectly? Any chance that she is wiping all the way from her anus forward? She could be simply bringing the bacteria from the anal region into her labial area, thus setting-up irritation/infection.

Poor sweet. Hope she feels better soon.
post #11 of 13
Thread Starter 
We're trying the vinegar tonight.
I know it is a real vaginal infection because she has a grey smelly discharge in her undies. She says her genitals hurt. I know she isn't wiping because this is an ongoing issue with us, I have seen her not wipe, she has told me she doesn't wipe.
I think what is happening is that she isn't wiping and as urine is an ideal medium for bacteria, and the perineum and anus, which are hardly sterile are, both very close to the vagina, so the bacteria is collecting and growing in the urine on her genitals and causing the infection.
That's my unproffessional opinion anyhow.
I will try the probiotic if the vinegar doesn't work.
Thanks for the ideas!
post #12 of 13
Since it's a vaginal infection and not vulva irritation I would definitely add the vinegar to her bath. That would be a gentle way to do an internal treatment.

My 3yo DD gets a red rash on her vulva and around her rectum that I think is due to not wiping too. Just running around with extra wetness seems like it would be very irritating and cause a rash. The rash clears up if I put zinc ointment on it but then she's left with goopy zinc coating that takes forever to leave.

I'm going to try using some vinegar on her too.

I was wondering (since my DD has very sensitive skin too) if sitting in the bathwater (which has been treated with bleach by the city) is wiping out some of her natural defenses? Maybe I should switch her to showers instead. Or just put a filter on our water--I suppose that would be best.
post #13 of 13
Another no wiper here! My dd is just not a fan. She goes through times where she gets irritation due to not wiping. However, she has never had any discharge or anything associated with this. But just bc it didn't cause it in dd's situation doesn't mean it didn't in your dds.

We had a problem earlier this year with severe itching in that area. I mean severe - crying, fits, and frustration. She began taking showers instead of long baths and soon she had relief.

Does she ever use those flushable wipes? Those are in general a bad idea for constant use and can upset our normal balance. I just wanted to check on that. Good luck!
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