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Worried about that brown discharge after your period? Keep calm and listen to this gynae

Published on:2 June 2020, 13:29pm IST
At times brown discharge is completely normal. But don’t take our word for it. Instead, read what a leading gynaecologist has to say about it.
Nikita Bhardwaj
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Don’t freak out and read this brown discharge 101. Image courtesy: Shutterstock
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Our body works in mysterious ways and at times, it puts us in a spot where we are left confused. And ladies have to deal with such situations quite frequently. In fact, most of us experience them when we are on our periods. Well, that’s quite obvious because this is the time when our body undergoes multiple changes hormonally.

One such thing that we experience during this time is the brown or dark-coloured discharge right before and after our periods. It often sends us on a panic spree as we wonder if it’s normal or if we need to visit a doctor.

We have got Dr. Bilsi Mittal, who is a gynecologist from Wockhardt hospital in Mumbai, to answer all these questions.

So, come, let’s understand everything about the brown discharge mystery.

What is this brown discharge?
According to Dr. Mittal, brown discharge is not a cause of concern at all. She says, “It is the old blood that is there in your vagina which gets oxidized when it comes into contact with oxygen. Due to the presence of iron in our blood, it turns brown in colour. The red color that you see during your period is fresh blood.”

menstrual hygeine day
When your period blood gets oxidized, it comes out as brown discharge. Image courtesy: Shutterstock

But she warned that “If this brown discharge is happening way too often then there could be a possibility that you might have a medical condition. If your discharge is accompanied by pain and itchiness then you must meet your doctor as soon as possible.”

Causes of this brown discharge?
If you are getting brown discharge beyond a day or two of your period then stress is one of the most prominent factors, Dr. Mittal informs.

She says that, “In all of my patients I have been witnessing one common thread and that is stress. It creates a hormonal imbalance in our body which leads to this brown discharge as well. This hormonal imbalance can also happen due to frequent travelling and weather changes.”

Stress
Your stress levels have a role to play in that brown discharge too. Image courtesy: Shutterstock

According to her, stress is still manageable but there are certain medical conditions that are definitely something to worry about.

Apart from stress, these seven things can also be the reason for the discharge:

  • Pregnancy
  • Endometrioma
  • Fibroids
  • Improper functioning of thyroid
  • Pelvic inflammation
  • Sexually-transmitted infections
  • Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS)She added:

    At times, I have also seen that rigorous exercising can lead to brown discharge. So, I would advise that you avoid it when your period is about to commence.

    Brown discharge doesn’t always mean that you are pregnant
    According to Dr Mittal, it is not always the case. A lot of women confuse it with the bleeding that happens during the fertilization of the eggs. But, before concluding this one should always meet their doctor to be double sure.

    If it’s happening with your mum then it could be a sign of perimenopause
    Dr. Mittal says, “Yes, brown discharge in women falling in the age bracket of 45 to 50 can be a sign of pre-menopause.”

    “To ensure that, you should also look for other signs of menopause like hot flashes, mood swings, insomnia, vaginal dryness, etc,” she added.

    Also read: Everything you need to know about perimenopause and hitting it in your 30s

    When you should consult your doctor?
    According to Dr. Mittal, if it is happening for the first time then there is nothing much to worry about. Wait for your second cycle. If it is repetitive and is accompanied by pain, fever, and foul smell then you should definitely consult your doctor.

    So, ladies, don’t be ignorant about your sexual health otherwise there can be major repercussions. Keep a tab on your vaginal discharge so that you can differentiate between normal brown discharge and the one that can create chaos.

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Nikita Bhardwaj Nikita Bhardwaj

Six-pack abs are all that Nikita needs, along with her daily dose of green tea. At Health Shots, she produces videos, podcasts, stories, and other kick-ass content.