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Vaginal Discharge: Colors, Cause, Types and, Treatments.

What is Vagina discharge?

Vaginal discharge is usually transparent or white. During ovulation, approximately two weeks following your menstrual cycle, it may become elastic and slick. If you notice a change in the colour or volume of discharge, along with other symptoms, you may have an infection.

Bacteria are usually found in the vaginal canal. Bacterial growth is influenced and controlled by a variety of factors, including acidity (pH) and hormones. Anything that disrupts this balance raises your chance of infection or yeast overgrowth by any of the usual microorganisms.

The following are examples of possible triggers:

The use of antibiotics

Pills for birth control

Douching 

Diabetes

Pregnancy 

Stress

Underwear that is too tight or synthetic

Infection with the following bacteria can cause vaginal discharge:

Candida, a kind of fungus that is part of the natural flora of human skin but may sometimes cause infections, is also known as yeast.

Gardnerella is a bacterium that is typically present in the female vaginal canal and causes bacterial vaginosis.

Trichomonas is a protozoan, which is a single-celled creature.

Vaginal discharge can also be caused by sexually transmitted illnesses like gonorrhoea or chlamydia. Other non-infectious reasons include vaginal inflammation or irritation caused by scented products such as soap, douches, pads, or tampons; diabetes; or low estrogen levels associated with menopause (atrophic vaginitis).

Symptoms

It's possible that the colour, quantity, or odour of the discharge will vary. Yeast infection is characterized by a white, curd-like discharge that resembles cottage cheese. Trichomonas or bacterial vaginosis is generally indicated by a yellow, green, or grey discharge. Bacterial vaginosis has an odd, fishy odour as well.

Itching is more obvious when you have a yeast infection, but it may happen with any infection or irritation. Atrophic vaginitis is characterized by a dry, inflamed vaginal lining that can be particularly unpleasant or painful during intercourse. A fresh vaginal discharge that is accompanied by a fever, stomach ache, or pain during intercourse might be a sign of a sexually transmitted illness like gonorrhoea or chlamydia.

Diagnosis

Your doctor will ask you questions regarding recent antibiotic usage, whether you have a new sexual partner, menopausal symptoms, diabetic symptoms, and any recent changes in your health or lifestyle to help determine the source of your discharge.

After that, you'll undergo a pelvic exam. Your doctor will examine the cervix directly using an instrument called a speculum. A sample of the discharge is taken for testing during the pelvic exam. By examining the discharge under a microscope your doctor can identify yeast infection, bacterial vaginosis, or trichomonas infection and begin treatment immediately. 

Your doctor may diagnose atrophic vaginitis based on the appearance of the vaginal walls.

Inserting his or her fingers into your vagina, your doctor will assess the tenderness of your cervix, uterus, or ovaries. Tenderness might be a sign of a sexually transmitted infection or a pelvic inflammatory illness. The results of laboratory testing are needed to diagnose gonorrhoea or chlamydia, which might take a few days.

Expected Timeframe

Treatment for vaginal discharge caused by bacterial or yeast infections usually takes a few days to a week. Antibiotic therapy for sexually transmitted infections should work within a week. It may take longer to treat the infection if it advances to a pelvic inflammatory illness that extends beyond the vaginal region.

Hormonal treatment in the form of vaginal creams or hormone replacement therapy took orally work best for atrophic vaginitis. It generally takes a few weeks for the symptoms to subside. Vaginal water-based lubricants can ease mild discomfort. Identifying and eliminating the irritating substance that is causing your symptoms should cure the symptoms within a week.

Prevention

Your doctor can help you figure out what caused your symptoms, such as taking antibiotics, wearing non-cotton underwear, exercising in tight-fitting underwear, using scented items that irritate the vaginal lining, or using birth control pills. If you use birth control pills you may not need to stop to avoid recurrence of infection. 

Controlling blood sugar levels, especially if you're diabetic, can help you avoid recurring infections, especially yeast infections.

Treatment 

Antibiotics are used to treat infections. Often, one dose of antibiotics taken by mouth is sufficient. Another alternative is to utilize antibiotics in the form of a vaginal cream or gel, particularly if you have substantial adverse effects when taking antibiotics orally. The vaginal cream may also be more calming for the irritated, painful vaginal lining.

Your doctor will prescribe antibiotics if you are diagnosed with bacterial vaginosis or trichomoniasis. If your doctor believes you have a sexually transmitted illness based on your medical history and physical examination, you may be given antibiotics in the office, both by injection and by mouth, before the results of the tests can confirm the diagnosis.

You can use over-the-counter antifungal creams without a prescription if you have recurring yeast infections and identify the signs. If your symptoms do not improve, schedule an appointment with your doctor for a physical check to confirm the diagnosis and alter your therapy.

Hormonal changes, most commonly during or after menopause, can cause atrophic vaginitis. Estrogen is the most effective therapy. When compared to taking estrogen by mouth or using a skin patch, vaginal estrogen pills, creams, or rings are the safest options since you are exposed to lower estrogen levels.

Sexual partners are not required to be treated unless you have been diagnosed with a sexually transmitted illness or have recurring infections with no other risk factors. Your sexual partner should see a doctor if he or she has a new discharge or pain when urinating or during intercourse.

When Should You See a Professional?

If you previously had a yeast infection and are experiencing similar symptoms, you can begin treatment with an over-the-counter antifungal drug. Make an appointment with your doctor if your symptoms do not improve. If you have a fresh discharge that does not improve after you stop using possible irritants, see your doctor. You should visit a doctor right away if you have stomach pain or a fever with a fresh vaginal discharge.

Prognosis

Treatment for diseases that produce vaginal discharge usually takes only a few days. Because the vaginal layer takes time to strengthen, atrophic vaginitis may take a few weeks to react to hormone treatment. Infections resurface from time to time. Your doctor may recommend a more successful course of therapy, advise you on how to self-treat at home or assist you in eliminating infection-causing factors.

Related article: ALL YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT VAGINA INFECTIONS.

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COLORS, CAUSE, TYPES AND, TREATMENTS.

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