If you’re like the majority of women, you will have more vaginal discharge than usual before your pregnancy, and during it, as well. Usually, this discharge is not harmful. In fact, it helps to keep your vagina clean.
Normal vaginal discharge has a musk-like or mild odor, and it appears like a milky fluid. When you are pregnant, your body produces more discharge, particularly as you approach labor.
A yellow discharge while you are pregnant could cause you to become alarmed, and worry about the health of your unborn child. If you do experience a yellow discharge, this article will help you to understand why it happens, and what to do about it.
Is a Yellow Discharge during Pregnancy Normal?
Rarely does a woman experience yellow discharge in the first or the second trimester of pregnancy. During the third trimester, an odorless or nearly-odorless, light yellow discharge is normal. As you approach your due date, the yellow discharge may increase.
If your vaginal discharge ranges from yellow-brown to dark yellow or whitish-yellow, and it occurs with a thicker consistency and a fishy odor, schedule a visit with your physician, to learn the possible causes. Ask his opinion as well if you have an odorless yellow discharge for the first time in your first trimester.
Why would you have a Yellow Discharge during Pregnancy?
It can be alarming if you have a yellow discharge during your pregnancy, especially if this will be your first child. You need to find out why you are experiencing it. The main reasons include:
- Yeast Infections
Yeast infections are caused by candida albicans. Some of the symptoms include a swollen vulva, redness, vaginal itching, a foul smell and generally a thick, white discharge. The color may be dark or light yellow if it is not white. Most pregnant women who experience yeast infections have them in their second trimester.
Yeast infections are not harmful to your baby as long as they are treated promptly. You can buy OTC yeast infection treatments now, or schedule an appointment for an examination with your physician, and have a medication prescribed.
- Increased Levels of Estrogen
Estrogen occurs normally, whether you’re pregnant or not. Your fat cells, ovaries and adrenal glands produce it. The hormone promotes the development and maintenance of your female-dominant characteristics.
However, higher estrogen levels that are natural during pregnancy may cause side effects, including a yellow discharge. Stress, a low-fiber diet, high levels of body fat or hormone imbalances can cause increased levels of estrogen.
- Sexually Transmitted Diseases
These diseases are transmitted among sexual partners. They may cause much discomfort and can even harm your unborn baby. STDs must be promptly diagnosed and treated, for your health and your baby’s health.
Some sexually transmitted diseases include:
This disease is transmitted generally through intercourse without protection. The most notable symptoms are a swollen vulva, burning during urination, spotting after intercourse, a foul-odor yellow-orange or yellow-brown discharge and pain in the pelvic area.
If you are pregnant, you need to treat this disease right away, or you may suffer an ectopic pregnancy. You need medical assistance for the diagnosis and treatment of this STD.
This disease is brought on by transmitting of the bacteria Chlamydia trachomatis during intercourse. It is the most common STD in the United States. 75% or so of women with chlamydia do not have symptoms that are visible. When symptoms do appear, they include a swollen labia, vaginal itching, and a yellow discharge that gets darker as time passes. It may have no odor or a sour odor.
Antibiotics are used to treat Chlamydia during pregnancy. Your physician will prescribe an antibiotic that is safe for pregnant women.
This STD is also transmitted when you are having unprotected sex. The most recognizable symptoms include abdominal discomfort, a swollen vulva, painful urinating, itching and a green, frothy, foul-smelling discharge.
If this disease affects you when you are pregnant, you need to receive immediate medical attention, to prevent the premature rupture of the protective membrane surrounding your unborn child.
- Bacterial Vaginosis
When your normally healthy harmful and beneficial bacteria balance is thrown off, you will develop bacterial vaginosis. Using douches and engaging in intercourse with many partners may lead to this disease.
The most obvious symptoms include a thick, greenish-yellow discharge, accompanied by a foul order. There is also a higher amount of discharge than normal. This disease is generally treated with topical creams and antibiotics.
Preventing Yellow Discharge during Pregnancy
There are various steps you can take to prevent yellow discharge excretion during your pregnancy.
- Wear loose-fitting, non-irritating clothes.
- Keep your vaginal area dry and clean.
- Eat healthy foods, including yogurt.
- Do not use douches.
- Keep your sugar intake low, particularly if you suffer from diabetes.
- Practice meditation or stress relief during your pregnancy.
What other Types of Discharge will you have during your Pregnancy?
Women may experience different discharges as they go through pregnancy. This is due mainly to the hormone level variations and increased flow of blood. In addition to a yellow discharge, you may experience these other colors:
Due to the normal hormonal shifts during pregnancy, a white discharge is naturally excreted. You may note that it is thicker than it was before you were pregnant, but as long as it doesn’t have a foul odor, it is considered normal.
A pink colored discharge in pregnancy is caused by the mixing of vaginal discharge and blood. It may happen on an ongoing basis during pregnancy, and be heavier than your normal discharge. It isn’t necessarily a reason to become concerned in all cases. However, in some cases, if can mean that there are complications in your pregnancy. If you have any doubts or questions, contact your physician.
The cause of an orange discharge during pregnancy will depend on what color it is, besides orange. A yellowish-orange color discharge is typically normal. A bright colored orange discharge may be a sign of infection. A pink-orange, streaky discharge may be a fresh case of spotting brought on by cervical trauma. This can sometimes be normal, but you should call your physician to check it out.
A gray discharge is not normal, although it’s not necessarily concerning. It could indicate bacterial vaginosis. Your physician may prescribe a course of antibiotics to clear it up.
A green discharge from the vagina while you are pregnant is definitely abnormal, and you should be concerned if you see it. It may be an infection sign. Call your physician right away if you notice a green discharge.