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White Vaginal Discharge?

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Overview of White Vaginal Discharge

No woman wants to talk about it, but nearly every woman deals with it: white vaginal discharge. This routine bodily function may be taboo to talk about, but vaginal discharge is a daily process helps clean a woman’s body and even prevent infection. Yet, since white vaginal discharge isn’t a widely discussed topic, many women wonder what’s considered normal.

Basically, white vaginal discharge is normal. The appearance and characteristics of your usual, white vaginal discharge may vary slightly at different points during your menstrual cycle, during arousal, or during pregnancy, but that is still normal. 

However, when discharge significantly varies in color, consistency, and smell, there is cause for concern. An infection or a sexually transmitted disease such as gonorrhea or chlamydia may be present.

Potential Causes of Abnormal White Vaginal Discharge

Noticeable changes in your normal, white vaginal discharge can indicate a problem. The following conditions can commonly cause irregular discharge:

  • Yeast infections cause white vaginal discharge that is often thick and cheesy. It is usually accompanied with pain and itching.
  • Sexually transmitted diseases, particularly gonorrhea and chlamydia, cause white vaginal discharge to become yellow and cloudy.
  • Bacterial vaginosis often causes gray, yellow, or white vaginal discharge that has a strong, sometimes fishy odor.

Diagnosing Changes in White Vaginal Discharge

When your white vaginal discharge becomes significantly discolored, thicker, odorous and/or is accompanied with pain or itching, a diagnosis is necessary so a doctor can order proper treatment to get your body back to normal.

Since irregular, white vaginal discharge can be an STD symptom, STD testing is strongly encouraged. Gonorrhea testing, as well as chlamydia and trichomoniasis testing, should be administered after the onset of a possible STD symptom.

A doctor can test for a yeast infection or bacterial vaginosis.

Treatment for Abnormal, White Vaginal Discharge

After STD testing, the correct treatment can alleviate annoying and irritating symptoms quickly. If diagnosed with gonorrhea or another STD, treatment should be rendered as soon as possible to avoid any long term repercussions. A basic antibiotic can cure gonorrhea, chlamydia, or trichomoniasis.

A yeast infection is treated with antifungal medication, while bacterial vaginosis is cured with antibiotics. Both conditions can be treated via pills or creams.

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