Are you searching far and wide for natural Bartholin’s abscess treatments? Bartholin’s abscess is an infectious attack on the Bartholin glands which are located on either side of the vaginal opening. When one or both glands get blocked, an infected cyst might form around the gland leading to this particular condition. A Bartholin abscess usually measures about an inch in diameter and can cause severe pain to the affected individual. Most people affected will completely recover from a Bartholin’s abscess. But in some few rare cases, patients might encounter a relapse.
Bartholin’s abscess commonly affects women of childbearing age making them more vulnerable to this condition than any other population group. Nearly 2% of all women will have suffered from a Bartholin’s abscess during their lifetime.
Causes of Bartholin’s Abscess
The two Bartholin glands that are located on both sides of the vaginal opening help provide the needed lubrication to the vaginal mucosa. Bacteria mostly associated with sexually transmitted diseases such as chlamydia and gonorrhea are also known to be the leading cause of infection to the Bartholin glands. Also, other non-sexually transmitted bacteria such as E. coli can cause the glands to be infected. E. coli is a bacterium that normally infests the stomach walls of its host causing abdominal pain and diarrhea.
Symptoms of Bartholin’s Abscess
When a woman has Bartholin’s abscess, a lump usually forms under the skin of either side of the vagina causing a lot of pain and discomfort to the individual especially when she is walking, sitting or having sexual intercourse. The area affected by the abscess usually become swollen, turns red in color and may feel more tender than normal. Also, the whole body will experience a rise in temperature (fever) due to the infection.
How to Diagnose a Bartholin’s Abscess?
A Bartholin’s abscess can be detected by doing a simple physical examination even by yourself. This examination checks for any lumps inside the vaginal opening that may indicate any presence of an abscess.
You are also advised to take a urine test especially when you notice a discoloration of your urine or the existence of a foul smell coming from the vagina. A urine sample test may also identify any STDs that may be present in addition to the abscess. Treating both the abscess and the STD is more beneficial to the patient.
In some rare cases, a Bartholin’s abscess may indicate the presence of cancer cells. If this condition persists for a longer period of time, you should consider paying your doctor a visit.
Natural Bartholin’s Abscess Treatments
An early detection of a Bartholin abscess before it advances to higher stages makes it possible for one to try different home treatment procedures that can cure or reduce pain and inflammation:
The use of a sitz bath may help to treat the abscess caused by a Bartholin cyst. A sitz bath is a shallow bathing technique of using warm water in your usual bathtub or with the use of a sitz bath kit. This technique requires a person to soak herself for about 10-15 minutes in a sitz bath for up to 4-5 times a day. Soaking yourself will help reduce the discomfort and pain but may not completely cure the abscess. Due to the opening of the Bartholin gland being too small and may close early before full drainage of the abscess is complete, a sitz bath may take many days for it to be fully successful.
Taking probiotic supplements can also be useful when experiencing a Bartholin abscess. Probiotics promote the growth of healthy bacteria which are known to eliminate harmful bacteria from the body. In addition, probiotics boost the body’s immune system as well as balance bacteria in the body.
Apple Cider Vinegar
Using apple cider vinegar is another technique that’s worth trying. Apply the vinegar directly to the infected cyst using a clean sterile cotton pad. If the vinegar is too painful you can dilute it using some water but avoid over-diluting. Note that this procedure is to be done after taking a sitz bath and having yourself dry.
Another home treatment technique is by using a mixture of castor oil and tea tree to make an ointment-like mixture that is applied directly to the cyst to promote pus drainage. Tea tree oil has been found to have antibacterial effects, which reduce infection while castor oil helps to promote blood circulation and reduce inflammation in the area affected. Application of this mixture should be done with the use of clean sterile gauze. For this technique to be more effective, one is advised to add a hot compress on top of the gauze.
Turmeric contains an active ingredient called curcumin which has medicinal qualities of antibacterial and antiseptic properties. The powder is combined with virgin coconut oil to make a smooth ointment that is applied to the infected cyst to eliminate the infection and reduce inflammation.
Eating a healthy and nutritional diet also proves to be helpful. Foods containing vitamin C and D have excellent antioxidant properties which boost the body’s immunity and help the body to fight ‘free radical damage’. They also keep your body in shape to fight any bacteria attacking your Bartholin gland.
Taking an alkaline diet of healthy vegetables and fruits while avoiding acid-producing foods such as animal protein will help reduce infection growth in the body. This will entail eating raw or lightly cooked dark leafy greens that have not been exposed to too much heat. Too much heat is known to lower food’s nutritional value.
Other Remedies To Consider
Another rarely useful home treatment technique that has been proved helpful is the application of silver nitrate ointment to eliminate infection in the cyst.
Other studies have found out that the use of a carbon-dioxide laser helps reduce infection growth in the Bartholin gland.
What to Do If Home Treatment Doesn’t Work
If all the home treatment techniques don’t yield results you may need to take a visit to the hospital. The first line of treatment is usually a course of antibiotic medicines that are either orally taken or given as injections and in some cases, both are being used.
If antibiotic therapy fails, or if the abscess is too large for antibiotics to work, a surgical procedure may be required. The procedure may be necessary to drain the abscess. This procedure can be done both under local anesthesia or general anesthesia and you may be asked to choose between the two options. The surgery not only relieves the symptoms but it also reduces the chances of the problem occurring again.