Some amount of vaginal discharge will always occur from about 2 years before puberty to the time of menopause. The discharge is composed of secretions of the cervical glands, the vaginal lining cells and secretions of Bartholin Glands. The amount of vaginal discharge will change from time to time depending on the body's level of estrogen.
How much discharge is normal
The definition of normal will change form woman to woman. But if it involves using panty shields and change of underwear many times a day it probably is more than normal. The week before periods, use of oral contraceptive and being pregnant are all typically associated with increased vaginal discharge.
What are the characteristics of a normal discharge
The normal discharge is not itchy nor is it malodorous. A normal discharge is usually clear, creamy or slightly yellow.
When should a doctor be called?
The doctors should be visited when the character of the discharge changes.
When there is a sudden increase in the volume of the discharge.
When the discharge changes color from the normal yellow-whitish to brownish or greenish.
When it becomes malodorous.
The above symptoms of an abnormal discharge may be associated with signs of itching and burning.
What will the doctor do?
The doctor will take a swab from the vagina and see it under the microscope. The result would guide him to do further investigation or give treatment.
If a person suspects that she is suffering from a sexually transmitted disease she should contact her doctor immediately.