What is Vaginal Discharge?
The amount of vaginal discharge can vary from person to person. During menstrual cycle, the color, consistency, and amount of vaginal discharge can also be change from day to day as:
- Days 1–5. At the beginning of the cycle, discharge is usually red or bloody, as the body sheds the uterine lining.
- Days 6–14. Following a period, a person may notice less vaginal discharge than usual. As the egg starts to develop and mature, the cervical mucus will become cloudy and white or yellow. It may feel sticky.
- Days 14–25. A few days before ovulation, the mucus will be thin and slippery, similar to the consistency of egg whites. After ovulation, the mucus will go back to being cloudy, white or yellow, and possibly sticky or tacky.
- Days 25–28. The cervical mucus will lighten, and a person will see less of it, before getting another period.
Bleeding from the vagina can also occur at any time during pregnancy and it happens due to many different causes. We should take immediate attention and consult the doctor because bleeding at any stage is potentially serious. Vaginal discharge can be due to the infection. Abnormal discharge may be yellow or green, chunky in consistency, or foul-smelling. It can also due to the reason of bacterial or yeast infection. Affected women should consult the doctor if they feel foul smell and unusual vaginal bleeding.
Types of Vaginal Bleeding
Vaginal discharge can be of different types and we will categorize on the base of discharge color and consistency. Discharge is a natural thing and some types of discharges are natural but other than normal indicate an underlying condition that requires proper treatment. We will discuss shortly on each type in this article.
1. White Color
Discharge with a bit of white color, especially at the beginning or end of the menstrual cycle considered to be normal. But the discharge is accompanied by itching and a thick cottage cheese-like appearance is not normal. This type of vaginal discharge is one of the signs of yeast infection and needs proper treatment. Affected women should consult a gynecologist.
2. Clear Watery
If your discharge is clear and watery, don’t worry, it’s perfectly normal. It can be due to the heavy exercises. Mostly it can happen at any time of the month.
3. Stretchy BUT Clear
It’s also a normal discharge type when it is stretchy and mucous-like. It is one of the symptoms, that you are likely to ovulate.
4. Brown or Bloody
Discharge in brown or red color is normal in menstrual cycle or right after it. Vaginal discharge color will be brown instead of red in case of late discharge after period. You are experiencing a small amount of blood discharge between periods known as Spotting.
Vaginal bleeding during the first 14 weeks of pregnancy may indicate a miscarriage or, less commonly, an ectopic pregnancy. In some cases, there may also be pain, which tends to be severe if the cause is an ectopic pregnancy. Occasionally, light bleeding occurs for no apparent reason and the pregnancy continues. Between 14 and
24 weeks, bleeding may signify a late miscarriage, commonly due to cervical incompetence. It is very important to consult the doctor in the early phase of pregnancy in case of bloody vaginal bleeding.
5. Yellow or Green
A thick, chunky vaginal discharge with an unpleasant smell, especially when it contains yellow or green color, you should take it seriously. Because it is normal vaginal bleeding. It is a sign of infection known as Trichomoniasis and spread due to sexual intercourse.
Causes of Abnormal Discharge
If you are experiencing abnormal vaginal discharge, consult the doctor, and expect a physical and pelvic exam. You should wear cotton underwear to minimize the spread of infection and stay away from sex. If necessary, then do safe sex.
Characteristics of different causes of abnormal vaginal discharge
All characteristics of different causes of abnormal vaginal discharge as discussed in the table below: