Vaginal Discharge During Pregnancy

The word, discharge, is sometimes met with mixed emotions. Is it white? Should it be clear, thin or thick? Most of all, does it smell? 

Understanding your vaginal discharge will keep most of these worries at bay, especially when you are pregnant. Most women notice an increase in vaginal discharge during this time. This is normal and no reason to panic.

What Are the Different Types of Discharge?

Consider these differences when observing your discharge:

  • Normal vaginal discharge (Leukorrhea)– Usually thin, white, milky with a mild smell. It’s important to note that there’s nothing wrong with a mild smell. In fact, everyone has their unique scent.
  • Abnormal vaginal discharge- it’s green, yellowish, with strong smell usually coupled with redness and itching. These are all signs that you may have a vaginal infection. 

Infections During Pregnancy

  • Yeast Infection (Candidiasis)

This when healthy candida in the vagina grows out of control. It may cause irritation that is usually accompanied by an itch. This occurs when there’s an imbalance in your vagina’s chemistry and your normal yeast grows too much.

  • Bacterial Vaginosis (BV)

Occurs when there’s an overgrowth of BV that naturally lives in your vagina. If not treated during pregnancy, it could cause premature birth or low birth weight.

  • Group B Strep (GBS)

Approximately 25% of all women have GBS. It could be in your intestinal tract, rectum or vagina. It is still unclear how so many people live with GBS without any being seriously affected while other it’s causes painful burning sensation while urinating and the sudden need to pee.

  • STI (Sexual Transmitted Infection)

STI can also bring a change in your vaginal discharge. Any change from leukorrhea is a clear indication that your vaginal is crying for help. Seeking professional advice is important. There could be a more underlying issue that, if not treated, may cause inoperable damage. STI like gonorrhoea or syphilis could put your child at risk if not diagnosed early.

Do’s and Don’ts to Promote Your Vaginal Health

  • Put on clean cotton undergarments
  • Avoid tight clothes
  • Don’t wash with soap
  • Don’t treat infections at home
  • Hang wet garments outside in direct sunlight
  • Wear panty liners 
  • Wipe from front to back

When You Should See a Doctor

Visit your doctor if you experience the following:

  • Burning sensation
  • Itching
  • Change in colour of your vaginal discharge (green or yellow)
  • Pelvic pain
  • Change in odour


Please note that development differs from one child to another. 

Content intended for educational purposes only, and not a substitute for medical advice from your doctor.

Be careful when using any products mentioned on this website. We hold no regulations for such products or their providers.

Last reviewed March 2019

Sources: americanpregnancy, avawomen, medicalnewstoday, bounty, pregnancybirthbaby

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