Each vagina has its own smell. It usually smells musky or mildly sour, which is how most women describe it. While germs are typically to blame for vaginal scents, occasionally the smell may also be influenced by your pee.
Although an ammonia-like odor in your vagina may initially frighten you, it’s usually nothing to worry about.
✅ Ammonia odor around your vagina may be caused by an infection, excessive sweating, or urine production.
✅ Contact your doctor if the odor doesn’t go away with regular rinsing and drinking extra water.
✅ To help treat an underlying infection, you might require a prescription.
Understanding how and why your body creates ammonia is crucial before exploring potential reasons for an ammonia odor in your vagina. The breaking down of proteins in your body is the responsibility of your liver.
This technique yields poisonous ammonia as a byproduct. Ammonia is converted into the much less harmful compound urea in your liver before exiting the body. When you urinate, urea is released into your bloodstream and transported to your kidneys, where it is eliminated from your body. Urea contains ammonia byproducts, which are the cause of the frequent slight ammonia odor found in urine.
What causes bacterial vaginosis?
A delicate balance of beneficial and toxic bacteria exists in your vagina. Any alteration to this equilibrium can result in an excess of harmful bacteria and the sickness known as bacterial vaginosis. The most prevalent vaginal infection in women between the ages of 15 and 44, according to the CDC, is bacterial vaginosis.
Many women with bacterial vaginosis claim to smell something fishy emanating from their vagina, but some women describe smelling something more chemical, like ammonia.
Additional signs of bacterial vaginosis include:
- itchy on the outside of your vagina
- pain, itching, or burning
- burning when you urinate
- thin, watery discharge that is white or gray
- and burning, itching, or burning.
While some cases of bacterial vaginosis resolve on their own, others call for antibiotic treatment. By refraining from douching, which can disturb the balance of good and bad bacteria in your vagina, you can lower your risk of developing bacterial vaginosis. Additionally, regular condom use can lower your risk of bacterial vaginosis.
If you’re pregnant
Early in their pregnancy, several women claim to have detected a scent resembling ammonia. Although the exact cause is unknown, it is probably related to dietary changes or infections.
Asparagus is one food that might change how your pee smells. Some women have cravings for foods they don’t often eat when they are pregnant. Doctors are unsure of the actual cause of this.
If you consume a new food that alters the scent of your pee, you can find that the scent lingers because of dried urine in your underwear or around your vagina. The majority of the time, this isn’t a problem, but to identify the offending food, you may wish to keep a meal diary.
Additionally, according to a 2014 study, first-trimester pregnant women report having a stronger sense of smell. That implies that you might only be smelling your urine as usual.
In some circumstances, bacterial vaginosis may be the cause of the peculiar odor. Bacterial vaginosis is associated with premature birth and low birth weights, despite the fact that it normally doesn’t cause any major complications in women who aren’t pregnant. If you are pregnant and experience any bacterial vaginosis symptoms, call your doctor right once.
Thirst and Dehydration
Water and waste materials, such as urea, are both present in urine. The waste materials in your urine are more concentrated when your body is dehydrated. Your urine may also turn darker and have a strong ammonia odor as a result of this. You can detect a residual ammonia scent as this pee dries on your skin or underclothes.
Weakness, lightheadedness, increased thirst, and decreased urine are additional signs of dehydration.
Consider consuming additional water during the day to see if the odor disappears. Contact your doctor if you still smell ammonia after your other dehydration symptoms have disappeared.
The Cleveland Clinic states that sweat is mostly water. Ammonia and other materials make up the remaining one percent. Eccrine and apocrine glands, two different types of sweat glands, are responsible for sweat production. Apocrine glands are more frequent in regions with a high density of hair follicles, such as your groin.
Both apocrine and endocrine glands produce odorless sweat, but apocrine gland sweat is more likely to smell when it comes into touch with microorganisms on your skin. Your groin has a lot of bacteria in addition to all those apocrine glands, making it the ideal place for odors, including ones that smell like ammonia.
Sweating and bacteria are essential components of your overall health, but you can reduce the odor they produce by doing the following: thoroughly cleansing your vulva with warm water, and paying close attention to folds in your labia. Using 100% cotton underwear will assist in sweat evaporation from the body.
Also, avoid wearing tight clothing, which hinders sweat from evaporating off your body.
Many women experience postmenopausal atrophic vaginitis after menopause. Your vaginal wall thins as a result, and inflammation results. Your risk of urine incontinence may increase as a result, which may cause an ammonia-like odor to develop around your vagina. Additionally, it makes you more likely to get vaginal infections like bacterial vaginosis.
Other signs of postmenopausal atrophic vaginitis include:
- decreased lubrication during sex
- and pain.
Using a natural, water-based lubricant can help you handle some problems with ease. Additionally, you can discuss hormone replacement therapy with your doctor. Wearing a panty liner can help to catch any pee leaks that may occur throughout the day in the meantime.
There are a few things you can take to help prevent the ammonia odor that can come from your vagina, including:
Wear 100% cotton underwear and loose-fitting pants. Regularly wash your vulva with warm water. Avoid douching, which upsets the balance of bacteria in your vagina. Drink plenty of water, especially when exercising. Wipe from front to back to lower your risk of getting a bacterial infection.
Wear panty liners or frequently change your underwear if you’re prone to urine leakage.
Ammonia odor around your vagina may be caused by an infection, excessive sweating, or urine production. Contact your doctor if the odor doesn’t go away with regular rinsing and drinking extra water. To help treat an underlying infection, you might require a prescription.