Personal hygiene is very important for general well being. Surprisingly, the vagina can tell you a lot about your health — especially with discharge, which can signify everything from normal cycles to major health issues. Normal vaginal discharge varies in amount and ranges in color from clear to milky, white discharge. Discharge may have a slight odor as well, although a foul, fishy odor is a sign of an infection. Vaginal discharge during pregnancy is thin, white, milky and mild smelling.
Here are some types of discharge you may see and what they mean
Thick, White Discharge
If thick, white discharge goes along with other symptoms, such as itching, burning, and irritation, it is probably due to a yeast infection. If not, it is normal discharge.
Yellow discharge is abnormal discharge, as this is a sign of a bacterial infection or sexually transmitted infection.
Brown discharge may be caused by irregular period cycles. If brown discharge keeps appearing, a patient should schedule an appointment with a provider to be evaluated. This could be a sign of uterine or cervical cancer. Additionally, during menopause, a woman should not have any type of vaginal bleeding, which is also a sign of uterine cancer.
Having green discharge is not normal. This is a sign of bacterial infection or a sexually transmitted infection. Anyone experiencing green discharge should see her provider.
Yeast Infection Discharge
Yeast infection discharge is caused by an overgrowth of fungus in the vagina. Symptoms of yeast infection discharge include a thick, white, cottage cheese-like discharge, along with itching, redness, irritation, and burning. Roughly 90 percent of women will have a yeast infection at some point in their life. Yeast infections are not contagious, and over-the-counter antifungal creams are available for a patient to use. But, if symptoms don’t improve with treatment or she has more than four yeast infections in a year, she should see her provider.