Question: What causes yellow green discharge?
From time to time, it’s important that women understand changes in their body and inform their doctor if anything that seems unusual.
Your period and vaginal discharge can quickly tell when something is wrong; So, being observant is important to prevent long-term complications that may affect your chances of conceiving in the future.
A yellow-green discharge is most likely an abnormal discharge and occurs because of bacterial infections that irritate the vagina. A normal discharge is whitish in color and does not cause any form of pain or itching down there.
Normally, your body’s uterine cervix contain glands that help in the production of cervical mucus. This fluid travels through your vaginal canal and assists in keeping your vaginal devoid of infection and dead cells. This is a natural protective way your body keeps your vagina in good health and also clean.
Within your vagina are different kind of cells that live together without causing infections. After vaginal douching, use of broad-spectrum antibiotics and steroids, vaginal balance of cells are affected, resulting in infections.
If you do not experience vaginal itching, back pain, lower abdominal pain, or pain while having intercourse, there is no reason to worry yet. However, if you do have these symptoms with a yellowish green discharge, you should see your doctor right away.
Common causes of yellow green discharge are chlamydia, gonorrhea, trichomoniasis, bacterial vaginosis and pelvic inflammatory disease.
This article explains why you have an abnormal discharge, when to worry and what to do.
What causes yellow green discharge from vagina?
If you are experiencing a yellow-greenish discharge, it’s normal that you will worry about something’s wrong.
Here is an email I received from Thelma (one of my readers)
Am 33 years old, and I recently had an abortion through evacuation. I have been spotting for about two weeks now with smelly green yellow stuff from my vagina. I’ve tried many other medications, and it’s not improving, should I see a doctor?
Just like Thelma, you will be worried if you notice a greenish colored discharge. In most women, it is because something’s wrong. Here are common causes you should know.
1. Chlamydia infection
If you have a greenish-yellow vaginal discharge, it’s possible that you have chlamydia vaginal infection.
Chlamydia is a sexually transmitted infection, which means, you must have had an unprotected sexual activity with someone in the past.
Sometimes, apart from vaginal intercourse, you can still catch chlamydia if you share sex toys with an infected partner.
When chlamydia enters a woman’s body, most times, there will not be any sign of the infection. About 50 percent of men and 75 percent of women are asymptomatic to chlamydia infection.
However, if you become infected and begin to show symptoms, an abnormal vaginal discharge that is greenish or yellowish is common.
Other symptoms that suggest you have chlamydia are
- Excessive vaginal discharge due to inflammation of your cervix and vagina wall
- Pain while urinating
- Vaginal pain during sexual activity
- Yellow vaginal discharge
- Lower abdominal pain
- Back pain
- Spotting in between your menstrual periods
- Rectal discharge that is offensive
If you are experiencing any of these symptoms and have a greenish discharge, it’s possible you are already infected with chlamydia
What to do?
A greenish-yellow discharge that is due to chlamydia infection can be treated with single dose of azithromycin.
Talk to your doctor first before taking medication. A culture of your discharge and urinalysis will be done.
If you are pregnant and have an abnormal discharge, you must see your healthcare provider for information and evaluation before taking any medication. This is vital to prevent irreversible damage to your growing baby.
2. Gonorrhea infection
Just like chlamydia infection, a yellow green discharge may be due to gonorrhea. Gonorrhea is another sexually transmitted infection that can affect your vagina resulting in vaginal pain, smell, and itching.
It is caused by a bacteria called Neisseria gonorrhea, and if you had sexual intercourse before without always protecting yourself with a condom, you might already have the infection.
After sex with someone who has gonorrhea, it takes about two weeks for your body to react and start showing symptoms. However, this may not always be the case for most infected women. In fact, most women that get gonorrhea are asymptomatic.
In women that show symptoms, a green yellow discharge with odor is common. Here are other symptoms you may experience
- Painful sexual activity
- Spotting in between period
- Pain in your lower abdomen and pelvis
- Waist pain
- Yellowish green discharge
- Vaginal itching
- Foul smelling discharge
- Burning pain while urinating
These symptoms are common with a gonorrhea infection. However, you may also have other STDs too. Talk to your doctor quickly.
What steps to take?
Gonorrhea is mostly asymptomatic in most women, and if you are showing symptoms, talk to your doctor quickly.
The World Health Organisation recommends that if you are sexually active and between 15 and 25 years of age it is important you routinely take STD test. This is because gonorrhea can cause infertility, chronic pain in the lower part of your abdomen and pelvic region.
Treatment of gonorrhea is through use of antibiotic which involves the use of azithromycin or doxycycline tablets.
3. Bacterial vaginosis
Your vagina is made up of many types of cells that live together without normally causing an infection
The bacteria, lactobacillus, ensure your vagina is acidic, and also, help you fight bacterial infections.
After vaginal douching, these good protective vaginal bacteria (lactobacillus) are destroyed resulting in an unbalanced number of cells that favors harmful bacteria that cause infections.
If this happens, you are at risk of Bacterial vaginosis that makes your discharge smell like fish. Other symptoms are burning pain while urinating and lower abdominal pain.
What to do?
Apart from an unpleasant smell that is very discomforting, bacterial vaginosis infection can increase your risk of contracting other sexually transmitted diseases (like gonorrhea, chlamydia, and HIV)
Talk to your doctor as treatment is also quick and easy. Clindamycin and Flagyl tablets help relieve symptoms.
4. Trichomoniasis…see here
What causes yellow green discharge after period?
If you are experiencing a yellow-green discharge after en of menstruation, it could be due to chlamydia, trichomoniasis, gonorrhea and bacterial vaginosis infections. Talk to your doctor for examination and test to be carried out.
What causes yellow green discharge no odor?
Whether you experience a smelly discharge or not, a greenish looking discharge is not normal. See your health care specialist to rule out possible causes, especial vaginal infections.