Everything you need to know about your vaginal discharge!
Wondering what your vaginal discharge means? We’ll tell you everything you need to know so those worries you’ve been having will go away!
What is it?
If you’ve ever gone to the bathroom and been surprised to find a clear or white gel like substance in your undies, then do not worry you’re completely normal. Vaginal discharge is fluid made by glands inside the vagina, uterus and cervix, which remove dead cells and bacteria. The liquid in which you see is mainly made up of cervical mucus, vaginal fluid, shedding vaginal and cervical cells, and bacteria. This fluid will usually occur at the time of your first period and seizes production around the time of menopause. The texture, amount and quality varies from person to person and its production can increase with several factors including, pregnancy, sexual arousal, ovulation, exercise and stress.
Why is it there?
It’s pretty simple! Vaginal discharge keeps the vagina clean and protects it from invasive bacteria and infections. It serves as a very important function in the female reproductive system.
Is my discharge healthy?
It’s always a good idea to observe any bodily function to ensure your health is on track. Although discharge varies from female to female, there are a few things that indicate its normality. As said above, your discharge will usually appear white or clear and have a subtle but not unusual or off-putting odour. It can change in consistency depending on your menstrual cycle and hormones as well as leave a yellowish tint.
When to see your doctor?
If you are unsure or worried about your vaginal discharge in any way there is no harm in checking in with your doctor just to be safe. However, if it does show signs of any of the abnormalities below then you could have an infection or something worse.
- Changes in consistency (cottage cheese-like)
- Appears yellow, green or grey
- Vaginal itchiness
- Has a strong unpleasant scent
- Appears to have blood in it
What are some causes of abnormal discharge?
Any changes in your vagina’s balance can cause a disruption in your discharge’s scent, consistency and colour. These are a few things, which could impact this:
- Bacterial infections such as thrush or vaginitis
- Contraceptive pills
- Cervical Cancer
- Douches, scented soaps or lotions
This is why it’s crucial to always pay attention to your body! A greater understanding of it can provide you with more information about your wellbeing and lets you know when there may be any serious issues that you need to bring up with your doctor.