What is vaginal discharge? Isn’t it normal? What if my discharge doesn’t look like what the books & Google say it should? Here we’ll take a quick look at the basics of Vaginal Discharge, how it affects fertility & how Chinese Medicine can help.
Vaginal discharge is fluid as a result of glandular secretions within the vagina.
What’s OK: If vaginal discharge is clear or cream-like, it can be considered normal. We call this normal Cervical Mucus. Cervical mucus can indicate your fertile years and on a monthly basis, let you know when you’re ovulating.
What’s Not OK: If there’s a lot of Vaginal Discharge, its white or coloured and thick or smells offensive then it is considered not normal and you need to see you medical physician for a check up. This type of discharge can hinder your plans to conceive and affect your fertility negatively.
Vaginal Discharge that is pathological could indicate the presence of Candida or an infection and you don’t to let something like that stay too long or settle in this part of your anatomy. Infection in the reproductive tract is serious and should be investigated asap. Untreated chronic infection can lead to scarring of the reproductive tract and subsequent infertility.
Causes of infectious discharge:
- Sexually Transmitted Illnesses (STI’s) such as gonorrhoea or chlamydia (60-75%)
- A prior history of Pelvic Inflammatory Disease (PID) or peritonitis
- Any other infection in the vagina
- Too frequent douching – changes the microbial balance in the vagina making it vulnerable to opportunistic pathogens
- Contraception: IUDs and NOT using barrier contraception eg condoms
In Traditional Chinese Medicine, thick discharge in large amounts is considered a sign of dampness in the body.
Damp describes the accumulation of fluid at certain parts of the body- fluid that is copious, thick and interferes with normal function, especially of the reproductive tract.
How Damp affects Fertility:
- cause blockages like excess mucus blocking fallopian tubes.
- cause congestion from fluid accumulation as in the case of Poly-cystic ovaries or excess glandular secretions within the vagina.
- Inflammation, associated with Yeast Infections such as Candida and UTI’s such as thrush.
- Cause Pruritis or itching of the genitals
- Strong smelling vaginal discharge can indicate heat and be associated with inflammation or infection.
Other damp signs:
- Fluid Retention
- Brainfog, vague thinking and poor mental clarity
- Dull senses; loss of sense of smell, taste or hearing
- Poor appetite & thirs
- Lethargy & fatuigue
The use of Chinese herbs and acupuncture as a complementary therapy to taking anti-biotics or medical advice is a great idea. While the Anti-biotics treat the infection, the Chinese Medicine can begin healing the damaged tissues and structures by clearing out the dampness.The Chinese herbs can help thin out and reduce discharge and any associated odour by clearing damp heat. The acupuncture can help manage other associated signs and symptoms such as fatigue, pain and hormone imbalances.
For more information about how Traditional Chinese Medicine can help with vaginal discharge that is pathological, please email me at email@example.com