Clear Vaginal Discharge Is Normal Unless There Are Other Symptoms
Clear vaginal discharge is common and absolutely normal. Basically, fluid outflow is triggered by vaginal cells that push the liquids out of the vaginal opening. It is a natural mechanism designed to remove unwanted agents from the vagina (e.g. dead cells, blood leftovers after the periods, or bacteria). If not accompanied by pain, itching, change in odor, or other symptoms, clear vaginal discharge is not something to be concerned with.
Natural Consistence of Clear Vaginal Discharge
Several types of vaginal fluids are completely ordinary. The normal fluid consistency depends on many factors (e.g. cycle time, ovulation, breastfeeding, sexual activity, and more). Normal discharge is defined by the following features:
- Color: Women are not made equal, so there are several variations to color of vaginal discharge. It can range from milky white to completely transparent, all of which are considered normal. Discharge color of the same female can vary depending on the menstrual flow, too. It can become more noticeable during ovulation and less visible after menstruation. Color change is not abnormal as long as it stays within aforementioned spectrum and is not accompanied by other factors (see below);
- Thickness: normal discharge should be thin, but can get a little thicker at different times of the cycle (for instance, during ovulation). Breastfeeding mothers also notice their discharge getting thicker. These differences are normal and should not be a cause for concern. Yet, fluids that are too thick (or even solid or cheese-like) are surely a reason to visit your gynecologist;
- Odor: vaginal discharge should be odorless. If it does have an odor, it is to be considered a deviation. Any female having such a symptom is prompted to contact her health care provider;
- Amount: the total amount of daily vaginal fluids should be around 4 mg. Using numbers is a little misleading as it can get hard measuring that volume. Usually women are well aware about the normal daily amount and can promptly notice significant deviations. Again, the exact volume can vary on the individual basis. It is down to genetics, sexual and physical activity, and many other factors.
Some women notice a much heavier fluid outflow during sexual excitement. It is prevalently transparent and stretchy. Again, it is totally normal and this fluid plays the role of a natural lubricant.
Let’s systemize the information mentioned here:
Types of Clear Vaginal Discharge
The following types of wet discharge are considered to be normal in females who reach puberty:
- Transparent, stretchy and odorless fluids happen during ovulation. It is sometimes referred to as “fertile” mucous. Some women have similar discharge when they get sexually excited;
- Transparent, watery discharge doesn’t have odor and occurs frequently at different times of the cycle. It is also common after physical exercises;
- Milky white (usually thick) discharge occurs at the beginning as well as at the end of the cycle. Most often it doesn’t have any odor and does not produce itching or burning. If at least one of these symptoms is present, it can be an indication of a yeast infection. Therefore, consult your doctor;
- Spotting blood discharge right after the periods is OK. Your vagina cells simply push blood leftovers away. If it happens at other times of the cycle, it can be a sign of a potential problem.
Speaking of problems, sometimes clear vaginal discharge is accompanied by various symptoms. It’s worth knowing what they mean.
Look Out for Potential Problems
Virtually any changes in your common discharge consistency can indicate certain health problems. Here’s the list of symptoms you should look out for and consult your doctor if they occur:
- Fluids can change color and consistency, e.g. become cheese-like yellowish or even greenish (this is a clear sign of an ongoing yeast infection);
- Bacteria can cause itchiness and burning in and around your vulva or vagina (even if these symptoms are not accompanied by changes in color or other indicators);
- Spotting blood discharge if it doesn’t happen right after you periods;
- Fishy or any other unpleasant odor of the fluids;
- Pain during sex or while urinating.
If clear vaginal discharge is accompanied by a combination of these symptoms, they can be produced by a number of very common diseases: bacterial vaginitis, yeast infections, and trichomoniasis. You are prompted to consult your doctor even if you experience mild symptoms. It’s up to a professional to diagnose you and prescribe adequate treatment if required.