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It is a question that is often asked: Is my vaginal discharge normal or should I be worried that something is wrong? The answer is: It depends. Every woman experiences some vaginal discharge and usually, it signals a healthy vagina but there are times when you should talk with your doctor.
What is Normal Discharge?
The pH in your vagina is naturally acidic to help prevent infections. This acidity is caused by “good” bacteria created by your body. Your vagina produces secretions to help cleanse your vagina, much like the saliva in your mouth. The secretions are released every day cleaning out old cells. The secretions also help prevent infections and keep your vagina lubricated.
As the secretions flow out of your vagina, you may see some discharge. Normal discharge is clear or milky white. It can sometimes appear yellowish when dry on clothing. You may also see small white flecks or, depending on your menstrual cycle, it may be thin and stringy.
Runny nose; Postnasal drip; Rhinorrhea
Keep the mucous thin rather than thick and sticky. This helps prevent complications, such as ear and sinus infections, and plugging of your nasal passages. To thin the mucous:
Drink extra fluids.
Increase the humidity in the air with a vaporizer or humidifier.
Use saline nasal sprays.
Antihistamines may reduce the amount of mucous. Be careful, because some antihistamines may make you drowsy. Don't use over-the-counter nasal sprays more often than 3 days on and 3 days off, unless told to by your doctor.
OVERUSE OF ANTIBIOTICS
Many people think that a green or yellow nasal discharge means a bacterial infection, which requires antibiotics. This is NOT true. Colds will often begin with a clear nasal discharge, but after several days it usually turns creamy yellow or green. Colds are caused by viruses, and antibiotics will not help. A green or yellow nasal discharge is not a...
Alternative Names Wet prep Normal Values A normal test result means there are no signs of an infection. What abnormal results mean Abnormal results mean there is an infection. The most common infections are due to one or a combination of the following: Bacterial vaginosis -- bacteria that normally live in the vagina overgrow, causing a heavy, white, fishy-smelling discharge and possibly a rash, painful intercourse, or odor after intercourse Trichomoniasis -- a sexually transmitted disease Vaginal yeast infection Additional conditions under which the test may be performed: Atrophic vaginitis (associated with lack of estrogen)
You should know
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