Cervical mucus: What it looks like & what it says

Female vaginal discharge is a normal part of a healthy body. This is because cervical mucus performs important functions for maintaining intimate flora. Discharge helps clean the vagina and keeps harmful bacteria in check. Typically, it is whitish and relatively odorless. But what if the color and smell change? We provide an overview and explain what the color and smell of cervical mucus mean and why changed vaginal discharge does not necessarily have to be a cause for concern.

What is cervical mucus?

The natural discharge is a secretion produced by special glands in the cervix, called the cervix, and can be recognized as discharge from the vagina. It can appear in different colors and consistencies. Discharge is something completely natural and should not be taboo. Our femtis discharge underwear can be your new daily companion here, so that you always have a dry and comfortable feeling when wearing it.

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White, yellow, brown? The color of the discharge and its meaning

Have you always wondered what the different colors mean and where they come from? Pay attention, here are the facts!

White discharge

A colorless white discharge that is also odorless is considered normal (physiological discharge). Doctors also refer to it as vaginal discharge. However: if the discharge occurs more frequently, is curd-like or flaky, it may be a sign of a vaginal yeast infection. Often, changes in the discharge are accompanied by redness, itching, and swollen labia. As unpleasant as a yeast infection may be, it is easily treatable. Over-the-counter creams and suppositories are available at the pharmacy and provide quick relief within a few days. However, if the symptoms persist for more than four or five days, it is advisable to see a doctor.

But beware: bacterial vaginosis also has very similar symptoms. This is not a fungal infection but a vaginal infection. For amateurs, it is sometimes difficult to classify the symptoms. Bacterial vaginosis often causes a strong vaginal odor (fishy), whereas a yeast infection does not. The most important sign of bacterial vaginosis is an elevated pH value. This can be tested by a gynecologist using a test strip. Beware: If you are pregnant and suspect you may have bacterial vaginosis, it is better to play it safe and see a doctor. Because: bacterial vaginosis during pregnancy increases the risk of premature birth and, worse still, miscarriage or stillbirth. Therefore, clarify and treat promptly. Then there is no more risk.

Yellow discharge

There are a number of bacteria or parasites that can disturb the delicate vaginal environment and cause infections. Yellow discharge is often a sign of an infection. The color change in cervical mucus indicates that the immune system is activated to fight off the unwanted invaders. Because: in the defense against infection, more white blood cells are produced, which are responsible for the yellow color in the discharge.

If yellow discharge occurs in combination with other symptoms, such as pain during urination or itching, it is better to confide in your gynecologist. Because yellow discharge can be a symptom of a sexually transmitted disease: Gonorrhea can cause a rather yellowish discharge. Inflammation of the cervix due to chlamydia also causes yellow discharge, usually in combination with contact bleeding. However, only a doctor can make a definite diagnosis. Early detection of the infection, on the other hand, allows targeted treatment, for example with the help of antibiotics or certain creams. Rapid healing is then possible.

Brown discharge

Many women experience the phenomenon of intermenstrual bleeding. For example, many notice brownish-red spots in their underwear around the time of ovulation. It is not easy to distinguish between intermenstrual bleeding and brown discharge. Therefore, it is always advisable to consult your doctor to clarify the cause of frequent, brownish-colored discharge. It does not always indicate a serious illness. On the contrary, brown discharge can be a sign of pregnancy. Hormonal changes can cause a brownish discoloration of the discharge, especially in the first few weeks of pregnancy.

Less pleasant, but not necessarily worrisome, are benign growths such as fibroids, polyps in the uterine lining, or benign changes in the cervix, which can cause brown discharge and intermenstrual bleeding. These are usually harmless changes, but they should be monitored by a doctor to prevent more severe bleeding and pain on the long term. In some cases, tissue changes in the uterus may indicate a precancerous condition, which needs to be treated quickly. Brown discharge is also a symptom of an infection caused by human papillomavirus, or HPV. HPV is suspected of being able to cause cervical cancer.

Especially during and after menopause, the causes of brown discharge should be clarified promptly because it can be a sign of a disease. For example, the before mentioned polyps occur more frequently in women during and after menopause. The earlier a diagnosis is made, the faster a successful treatment can be applied.

Avoid conventional disposable pads and liners

Did you know that 90% of hygiene products are made of a cellulose-plastic mixture? This is not only bad for our environment because pads and other products need over 500 years to decompose due to their non-degradable plastic components, but also because they harm our natural intimate flora. Plastic is not breathable, and a "moist area" without air supply is a wonderful breeding ground for bacteria. In drugstores, there are still liners with flowery scents that suggest we need to cover up our natural odor, which actually causes infections.

It is natural to use pads and liners for discharge, but please do so with care. To prevent a possible infection from spreading or to feel dry and protected all day long, it is best to use our Everyday Panties.

How does cervical mucus change during the menstrual cycle?

Similar to the strength of menstrual bleeding, the amount of vaginal discharge can vary from woman to woman. Some may have more, some may have less. Perhaps you have noticed during your menstrual cycle that the amount, color or consistency of vaginal discharge changes? This is completely normal and due to the influence of hormones. Your cycle length can also vary.

Cervical mucus before and after menstruation

Shortly before menstruation, cervical mucus becomes thicker and the amount may increase. Sometimes it may also become slightly yellowish, which is completely normal and nothing to worry about. After your period, the amount decreases again. During your period, you are optimally protected with our period underwear.

Cervical mucus around ovulation

As ovulation approaches, the discharge can become more transparent, thin and stretchy. The amount also increases again, so that sperm could be optimally transported to the egg. Due to its alkaline pH, it also prolongs the lifespan of the sperm. This means that sperm can survive in the uterus for up to 5 days.

Cervical mucus during pregnancy

During pregnancy, the hormones estrogen and progesterone can also cause a change in the amount of discharge. They prevent pathogens from entering the uterus.

Cervical mucus in menopause

In menopause, the production of the female hormone estrogen decreases, which can lead to reduced discharge and vaginal dryness.