Vaginal Discharge: What's Normal and What's Not
Posted on 16 February 2022
Yup, let's get ready to talk about something private that we don't usually bring up over the cup of coffee with besties.
Yet, discharge remains fact of life for us women and we may not even think twice about it. Vaginal discharge is normal and this vital fluid or mucus keeps the vagina clean and moist, and protects it from infection.
So What's Normal Vaginal Discharge?
Well, we know that paying attention to how our secretion looks like is not gross at all, totally...
It pays to take cue from the secretion down there as it points out to us of our personal health and menstrual cycle. You might notice the changes to the vaginal fluid throughout your menstrual cycle—it becomes thin, watery, and then ultra stretchy (think egg white) during the time of ovulation. And yup when you see this, it's time to stock on on condoms etc for those nights of passion if you are not looking forward to a new addition to the family. Right after ovulation, you might notice the vaginal discharge becomes thick and sticky (no luck for the sperm to meet the ovum by now!)
Generally, the vaginal discharge is normal if it:
- Odorless or desn’t have a strong or unpleasant smell
- Is clear, white or slightly yellowish
- Is thick and sticky
- Is slippery and wet
What's Not Normal?
If you notice a change in the color, smell, or consistency especially if it is accompanied by vaginal itching or vaginal burning, could be indicative of an infection or any other underlying condition. Let's talk about vaginal discharge that could signal that it’s time to book that appointment with a gynaecologist.
Consistency: Fluid becomes unusually thinner, or thicker and more textured. Thick, white, and cottage cheese-cheese- like discharge could points to yeast infection, especially if you also experience vaginal itching, burning, soreness, or pain.
Color: Discharge that is gray, green, yellow, or brown/bloody
Volume: Significant and unexpected in volume
Smell: Fishy, foul smell, metallic, or just different
Itching and soreness in the vaginal area
Bleeding between periods or after sex
Pain while urinating
- Pelvic pain
Keeping your vagina healthy
Maintaining a healthy vulva and vagina help prevent infections and discomfort. Generally, vagina is a self-cleansing organ and it does so naturally via normal, vaginal discharge. Avoid using douches unless prescribed by your physician. These products can upset the natural balance of organisms.e.
- Do not douche. Period. Douching upset the balance of ecosystem of vaginal flora (bacteria that live in the vagina) and natural acidity in a healthy vagina. It can lead to many health problems and is also linked to vaginal infections and sexually transmitted infections (STIs).
- Keep foaming and scented soap away from your vulva (or avoid soap on your vulva and in your vagina altogether)
- Try switching to PMS Leakproof Period Panties instead of tampons and sanitary napkins to control menstrual bleeding. Leaving tampons in for a long period may cause toxic shock syndrome and there's a host of nasty irritants in sanitary pads.
- Keep that nails away from scratching the intimate part.
- Avoid these feminine hygiene products, which can irritate the vulva: sanitary pads, feminine spray and deodorants, scented oils, bubble baths, bath oils, talc or powder.