WHAT IS NORMAL VAGINAL DISCHARGE?

Under normal circumstances, the vagina is supposed to be moist; ALWAYS. This is its way of telling you that, “hey! don’t touch me, I can clean myself” (lol!) However, normal vaginal discharge undergoes different changes at different stages of a woman’s life. And yes, even babies and prepubertal girls have this NORMAL vaginal moisture. The more reason why parents should always pay attention to their children’s body so as to quickly detect any deviation from the norm.

This writeup is going to focus on the normal, basically. So, if you notice anything outside these, go and see your doctor asap!

Characteristics of normal vaginal discharge:
*Colourless: clear, no debris, sometimes with a tinge of white.
*Smooth: no curdiness (like “egusi”)
*Odourless
*Mucoid: sometimes stretchy or “drawing” (like okro)
*Non-bloody
*Non-itchy: unless you wear a panty for 3 days!
*Non-copious: if you have to use a pad, panty liner, or change your panties often, that’s copious!

Slight variants can be expected during:
*Pre-ovulation: a bit larger volume, more mucoid, more stretchy.
*Sexual excitement: larger volume, more mucoid, enhances lubrication and pleasure.
*Pregnancy: yes, pregnancy is not a disease! can be more watery and more whitish (leucorrhea of pregnancy); can sometimes be confused with breaking of the “bag of water”; see a doctor or midwife if you’re in doubt.

Like I promised, I won’t go into the details of abnormal discharge; but I’ll mention below some of the causes:

*Hormonal medications: contraceptives, HRT, etc.
*Sexually-Transmitted Infections
*Pelvic inflammatory diseases
*Foreign bodies: tissue, cotton wool, guaze, tampons etc.
*Benign and malignant tumours of the genital tract
*Atrophic vaginitis: especially postmenopause.

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