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Is your vaginal discharge green? It’s an alarm for these problems

Have you spotted green vaginal discharge on your panties? Don't lose your calm. Here's what it is and why it happens.
green discharge
Vaginal discharge is normal but not always. Image courtesy: Shutterstock
Aayushi Gupta Updated: 14 Jan 2022, 17:47 pm IST
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Vaginal discharge can sometimes clue you in to what’s up down there – even if you have any potential health problems. It is a fluid that flows from the vagina and is produced by glands located in the vaginal wall and the cervix, keeping the vagina and reproductive tract clean and healthy.

A lucky few have so little vaginal discharge, it is not even noticeable. But for the rest of us, discharge is an (almost) daily occurrence. It is entirely normal among women. However, the types of vaginal discharge you experience will vary throughout your menstrual cycle. Which sometimes may leave you wondering whether the discharge you’re getting is normal or not.

green discharge
Talk to your healthcare professional in case your vaginal discharge is green. Image courtesy: Shutterstock

What is green discharge?

A healthy vaginal discharge consistency can range from watery to sticky, and the colour can range from clear to whitish. It also has a slight odour that isn’t strong smelling. However green discharge is not a normal occurrence and does require medical treatment. It’s abnormal and usually indicates infection especially when accompanied by a foul smell.

Let’s get down to knowing about its causes.

1. Trichomoniasis

Trichomoniasis is a sexually transmitted infection (STT) and is the most common cause of green discharge. But most women with this condition are asymptomatic. Dr Surabhi Siddhartha, Consultant Obstetrician & Gynaecologist, Motherhood Hospital Kharghar, Mumbai, says, “A green discharge will mean that you may have a bacterial or a sexually transmitted infection (STI). It can be due to trichomoniasis infection seen due to a parasite.”

2. Pelvic inflammatory diseases (PID)

PID is a general term for a bacterial infection of a woman’s reproductive organ. The major causes are two STD s called gonorrhoea and chlamydia. “The vaginal discharge that may be associated with these two infections is typically more yellow and green in colour, has a foul smell, and can lead to burning, itching, and pain down there,” says Dr Siddhartha.

causes of Chlamydia
Even oral sex can give you STI such as Chlamydia. Image courtesy: Shutterstock.

3. Foreign object

If there is a foreign object such as retained tampon in the vagina then one can see a green discharge. It will need to be removed and an antibiotic may be used to treat any potential infection, says Dr Siddhartha.

Also, read: White vaginal discharge before periods: To worry or not to worry?

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4. Vulvovaginitis

It may also be a sign of vulvovaginitis, which is characterized by inflammation to the vulva and vagina. This condition causes an overgrowth of flora which leads to swelling in the area. It is often caused by the use of irritating soap and scented products. This can cause green discharge.

5. Bacterial vaginosis

Although it is not the most common cause of green discharge, in many cases, a bacterial vaginosis infection can be present. But don’t worry it is curable so visit your doctor.

What does green vaginal discharge during pregnancy mean?

The only thing more worrying than seeing green vaginal discharge is seeing green discharge while you’re pregnant. Green vaginal discharge during pregnancy is a sign that you need to see your health care provider immediately. Green discharge during pregnancy might indicate any of the possible causes we’ve already discussed such as trichomoniasis, gonorrhoea, chlamydia, and bacterial vaginosis.

Other than green, how many colours of discharge are there?

1. Clear discharge

If it is clear then this can be before the process of ovulation or during pregnancy.

Also, read: 6 possible reasons why your vaginal discharge has blood

2. White discharge

It will have a strong odor and may indicate an infection.

green discharge
If your vaginal discharge is abnormal then see a doctor. Image courtesy: Shutterstock

3. Yellow-green discharge

This can be due to a change in your eating habits or taking dietary supplements.

4. Red discharge

This can be seen owing to menstrual bleeding during one’s period.

5. Gray discharge

If you have this type of discharge then it can be alarming! This can be seen because of bacterial vaginosis (BV). You will immediately consult the doctor and take treatment.

How to get rid of green discharge?

Dr Siddhartha suggests:

  • Take medication as instructed by the doctor
  • Keep your vagina clean
  • Do not use any chemical-laden products down there
  • Take bath with warm water
  • Wear undergarments made out of cotton fabric
  • Avoid douching

Remember that it can only be treated by the doctor so without any delay, make an appointment.

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About the Author

Aayushi Gupta is a health writer with a special interest in trends related to diet, fitness, beauty and intimate health. With around 2 years of experience in the wellness industry, she is connected to leading experts and doctors to provide our readers with factually correct information. ...Read More

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