• Vaginal Discharge
  • Pink Discharge
  • Clear Discharge
  • Green Discharge
  • Brown Discharge

Increased Vaginal Discharge – What Causes It and Proper Symptoms Management

Women are inherently conscious about their body. Keeping a pleasant image not only require women to improve on their physical appearance but their state of health too. Although this is the case, a lot of women are still clueless on how to properly take care of the reproductive system. Despite efforts to educate the female population about sexuality and reproductive health, many are still confused and anxious when certain changes in vaginal discharge appear.

This article hopes to enlighten women both young and old about increased vaginal discharge - the major causes of such a condition and the interventions that women can do to feel secure, comfortable, and confident about themselves.

Vaginal Discharge Functions

Vaginal discharge is obviously detected in and around the vaginal canal. It serves to protect and cleanse the vagina of foreign bacteria which may potentially cause abnormalities and disease to the human body. Vaginal discharge varies in color, odor, consistency, and pH depending on the stage or period a woman is in her reproductive cycle. Vagina secretions or discharge are inherently acidic in nature and ranges from 3.8 to 4.5. Any deviation from the typical range, whether an increase or decrease means that there is an interruption to the normal bacterial flora in the vagina.

There are several factors that change the amount and the quality of vaginal discharge.

- Upcoming menstrual period

- Stress

- Pregnancy

- Prescription medications

- Sexual arousal

- Lactation and breastfeeding

- Ovulation period

- Diet

In order to become fully aware of increased vaginal discharge as an abnormal occurrence, it is only proper to understand the qualities of healthy or normal vaginal discharge.

Women start producing vaginal secretion during the onset of puberty. The cervical glands are mainly responsible for producing vaginal fluid, which is directed downwards the vaginal canal. Once a female individual starts menstruating, the vaginal secretion increases as well. On the other hand, the color of the vaginal discharge normally deviates from clear, cloudy, white, and to yellow color. The odor of normal vaginal discharge is normal to odorless. Any changes from these normal qualities of vaginal secretions may be possible signs of underlying disease or medical problem.

Important changes that occur with a woman’s vaginal discharge are as follows:

- Increased vaginal discharge during mid-cycle. This is around the time of a woman’s ovulation period.

- The pH level of vaginal secretions substantially decreases a day or two prior to menstruation.

- Excessive and continuous vaginal discharge may also be caused by cervical cancer.

An increase in vaginal discharge can cause a variety of unpleasant symptoms. First, off increased vaginal change is downright uncomfortable for majority of women. The vaginal area becomes moist and wet, which in turn can cause intense itching. In addition, increased vaginal secretion and change in qualities such as color, consistency, and odor are all too embarrassing for a woman too. Lastly, increased vaginal secretion may signal not only a disruption in the normal flora of the vagina, but also invasion of microorganisms which cause Sexually Transmitted Diseases or STDs.

Increased vaginal discharge normally appears simultaneously with other abnormal signs and symptoms such as:

- Soreness in and around the vaginal area

- Intense itching and redness in the pubic region

- Continuous discharge of vaginal fluid

- Dysuria or pain or burning sensation during urination

- Cottage-cheese discharge

- foul-smelling discharge with green or yellow vaginal fluid discoloration

All of these symptoms point to the presence of vaginal infection. Majority of the infectious agents that invade the vaginal region commonly occur among millions of women. Yeast infection for example causes increased vaginal secretion and intense itching. It is important for women to be aware of the fact that most yeast infections are non-sexually transmitted, which means that this can happen even among women who do not have sexual partners.

In most cases, increased vaginal secretions occur in certain conditions:

- Increased vaginal discharge is fairly common among women who are pregnant. The vaginal secretion is usually colorless and odorless among pregnant women. The fluid increase does not cause itching, redness, or irritation, thus there is no need for medical intervention or prescription medication intake.

- Sexually transmitted diseases such as Trichomoniasis and Gonorrhea may cause excessive vaginal discharge as well. Women can easily detect that the reason for increased vaginal secretion is sexually transmitted in that it is usually accompanied by unwanted symptoms such as

  • Vaginal inflammation
  • Increased frequency of urination
  • Vaginal itching
  • Colors of vaginal discharge among women infected with STDs are usually greenish, yellowish, or grayish.
  • The vaginal discharge is commonly features a foul or fishy odor.
  • The amount of vaginal discharge increases all the more after sexual intercourse

-  Monilia or Yeast Infection is known to cause increased secretion of vaginal fluids too. Candida albicans commonly thrive in the vaginal environment. However, when the amount of yeast exceeds normal levels, it can cause yeast infection. As mentioned above, yeast infection is generally non-sexually transmitted and is commonly caused by the following factors:

  • Pregnancy
  • Misuse of antibiotics
  • Diabetes mellitus
  • Oral contraceptives use
  • Chronic stress

How to Treat Vaginal Discharge

The treatment intervention for increased vaginal discharge varies from case to case. Women are advised to seek the expertise of a gynecologist to identify the specific causative factor that resulted in overproduction of vaginal fluid. Once detected, the management may range from good hygiene practices, to application of over-the-counter vaginal creams, to the prescription of antibiotics which specifically target the microorganism which causes the overproduction of vaginal fluid.

Effective interventions that can be performed by women to avoid the occurrence of increased vaginal discharge, and in extension, infections are the following:

- Wear cotton underwear to keep vaginal region dry and fresh

- Proper hydration and consumption of healthy food items will help in maintaining healthy vaginal pH, thus protecting the pubic region against bacterial, viral, or fungal invasion

- Take prescribed medication as long as directed to avoid reoccurrence

- Avoid the use of perfumed sanitary pads or tampons

- Never scratch or touch the vaginal area to avoid further infection and inflammation

When increased vaginal discharge and other unpleasant symptoms persist, it is best to consult a doctor. Never self-medicate vaginal infections as this may only worsen and further increase the amount of vaginal discharge.