Vaginal discharge is a healthy part of vaginal health. More to the point, the discharge can mean your vagina is healthy. However, from time to time, white discharge may be a sign of an underlying problem.
Please note: This information was current at the time of publication. But medical information is always changing, and some information given here may be out of date. For regularly updated information on a variety of health topics, please visit familydoctor.
Your vagina can tell you a lot about your health — especially when it comes to discharge, which can signify everything from normal cycles to major health issueslike STIs or other infections. Always ask your healthcare provider if something doesn't look right to you, but here are a few of the most common kinds, according to doctors. Don't freak out. A few days or a week before your periodyou may get a thicker, creamier discharge.
As women, we all know that vaginal discharge is a fact of life, and we may not even think twice about it. But what is discharge, actually, and how can you tell what is normal, or what may be an indication of a problem? These glands produce small amounts of fluid also known as vaginal secretions.
Most women experience several types of vaginal discharges throughout their monthly menstrual cycle. A woman may produce around a teaspoon of clear, thick or thin, and white odorless discharge each day, and the color may vary from white to clear to brown. It may not be noticeable, but what is visible is not totally random.
Vaginal discharge is fluid that comes from the vagina. You might see this on the toilet paper when you wipe, or in your underwear. Normal vaginal discharge has several purposes: cleaning and moistening the vagina, and helping to prevent and fight infections. It's normal for the color, texture, and amount of vaginal discharge to change at different times of the month during a girl's menstrual cycle.
Burris describes vaginal discharge as fluid released by glands in the vagina and cervix. The fluid carries dead cells and bacteria out of the body, and vaginal discharge helps keep the vagina clean and prevent infection. Burris also says normal vaginal discharge varies in amount and ranges in color from clear to milky, white discharge.