Fact Check: Is My Hormonal Birth Control Causing My BV?

Get to know the role estrogen plays in the vaginal microbiome and why combined oral contraceptives may be associated with a decreased frequency of BV.
Read Time — 1 minute
Words by The Evvy Team; Edited by Dr. Krystal Thomas-White, PhD

Research has highlighted that hormones play a significant role in vaginal health. The most well-researched correlation between hormones and the vaginal microbiome is the importance of estrogen. More specifically, if estrogen levels are low, the good bacteria's ability to flourish may be hindered and it may be easier for pathogens to cause trouble.

Some studies report that combined oral contraceptives may be associated with a balanced microbiome and decreased frequency of bacterial vaginosis. The hormones in the combined oral contraception pill, specifically estrogen, promote stability through their effect on glycogen, which is a key factor for the growth of beneficial lactobacilli bacteria.

That said, we know there are many different factors that go into choosing the right contraception for you. Ask your doctor if a combined oral contraceptive pill with higher estrogen levels may help if you are experiencing recurring infections.

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