7:42 pm - 10/29/2008

What is discharge supposed to look like?

I was never really educated on vaginal health, and I kind of feel stupid for not knowing, but what is discharge supposed to look like?  And how often is it supposed to happen? 
moshfloorkiller 30th-Oct-2008 12:19 am (UTC)
white, slimy, gooey.
sometimes a more creamish yellow, and thick

for me, it comes mostly a week or so before my period.
and it's usually thick.
ktnzgtklws 30th-Oct-2008 12:32 am (UTC)
I HIGHLY recommend "Taking Charge of Your Fertility." It may be about contraception/conception, but it has SO many general gyno type health information it it, too! :-) It's a very common book, and can be found on amazon, at your library, or at any used bookstore of decent size.
Outside of that, it's normal to have discharge every day of some form. As long as it's clear-ish or white-ish, thin, and not overly abundant, that's usually considered normal. One normal variation would be clear and thick, like egg whites. That would be a sign you are, or are about to, ovulate.
Anything fishy smelling, bread smelling, overly thick and white, or yellow/green in color is an indication of a yeastie beastie or bacterial vaginosis.
anyakitty 30th-Oct-2008 12:34 am (UTC)
The appearance of your vaginal discharge can/will change throughout your cycle... most of the time it is its most plentiful (that is such awkward wording but you catch my drift!) when you are most fertile, in the middle of your cycle. This is to help the potential sperm travel their way up to your eggos. On either end it might taper off a bit and change color/consistency... before I went on the pill (which made me dry up completely unfortunately), I had globs of stringy clear discharge when I was most fertile to the point where I had to wear and change pantiliners several times a day, and slower flowing, thicker, cloudier discharge the rest of the time.

That said... everyone's discharge can be VERY different I'm sure. It could smell different, look different, you could have more or less of it... as long as it doesn't itch, turn green (or any other non-white/beige/off-white color), come out in chunks or smell putrid, you should be fine.

If you're up for it, just Google "vaginal discharge" and see if you can find any pictures to compare to. If you think something is wrong, of course mention it to your OB/GYN.
svexsal 30th-Oct-2008 01:01 am (UTC)
I agree with the other descriptions of discharge - sometimes mine is clear and sometimes white. Sometimes I notice it most when I really have to go to the bathroom. Most of the time, I hardly ever get any.
atalanta0jess 30th-Oct-2008 01:31 am (UTC)
Most women have some amount of discharge every day. Healthy colors are white, clear, or yellow (I believe that usually, healthy discharge doesn't look yellow on the TP or on its own, but when its dried on your underpants it might).
queensugar 30th-Oct-2008 03:26 am (UTC)
It can happen every day, or only at some points in your cycle. Every woman (and sometimes every cycle!) is a bit different in that regard. It can also change as you age -- like when I was 14-18, I had tons of watery discharge every day. Now (10 years later) I only get it at three or four distinct points in my cycle.

As a general rule, it can be anything from wet and slippery, to thick and gooey, to tacky and sorta... glue-like, but without the sticky. It can be white, cream, clear, or yellowish. It can smell mild or strong, but shouldn't smell bad.

Basically... as long as it doesn't smell foul, isn't a funky colour (like green or gray) and isn't associated with any other symptoms, it's almost certainly normal and healthy. :)
abalone99 30th-Oct-2008 05:32 am (UTC)
Yep, as others have said there's a whole range. For me there is almost no day where I don't have some discharge and normally I get a fair amount (like a teaspoon or so). It ranges for me from clearish mucusy (like a big phlegm wad as lovely of an image as that is) to more of an opaque yogurty/gluish consistancy that ranges from white to slightly yellow.

The other bad sign that others haven't pointed out would be if your discharge gets chunky like the consistancy of ricotta or cottage cheese, i.e. visible chunks. Believe me, you'll know this when you see it. I never thought I would but I got my first and only *knocks on wood* YI a while ago and the difference was incredibly noticable.

Also I'm 24 and have had this kind and level of discharge pretty much since puberty at the ripe old age of 11 as far as I can remember.
katieelizab3th 30th-Oct-2008 03:47 pm (UTC)
Ah, thanks everyone for replying, it really helped!
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