There are a few causes of discharge before your period to be aware of. If you are ready to educate yourself on the main causes and learn more about your body, this article is perfect for you. We have compiled the top causes of getting white discharge before a period to help you understand what is happening in your body and when to reach out for medical help.
In most cases, white discharge before a period is normal and expected. However, sometimes it can be a sign of something more serious. Make sure to consult a medical professional at a reliable clinic. If you are on the lookout for the best, we suggest reaching out to an obstetrician in Palm Beach, FL.
With that in mind, here is everything you should know about discharge before your period.
What Does White Discharge Before a Period Mean?
Every woman experiences vaginal discharge from time to time. In fact, vaginal discharge is just your body’s natural way of warding off infections from the vagina. Depending on where you are in the menstrual cycle, vaginal discharge will vary. For instance, some women may experience tiny amounts of odorless mucus daily, while others can notice brown or white discharge. Hormones are the main reason why you notice unusual discharge before your period. However, this is not always the case.
Leukorrhea refers to the white discharge women notice before their periods. This white discharge is filled with cells and fluids from the vagina. In some instances, the discharge may appear slightly yellow.
The progesterone hormone peaks in the woman’s body during the luteal phase. The discharge will typically turn white and cloudy when the progesterone hormone is dominant. On the other hand, when the dominant hormone is estrogen, the discharge will usually be watery, stretchy, and clear.
Knowing the time of your luteal phase is important, especially if you want to track possible fertility – this is a good fertility awareness method. You are considered fertile if you have stretchy and thin mucus. This is because stretchy and thin mucus occurs around the period when the egg is released. On the flip side, thick and white discharge is considered infertile.
Here are some additional facts about the luteal phase, or the second part of the menstrual cycle:
- The luteal phase begins after ovulating and ends with the initial day of menstruation.
- This phase will typically last up to 17 days, but it can also last up to 14 days.
- If the luteal phase lasts less than 10 days, it is considered short (these women can find it hard to conceive or may take longer to become pregnant).
The Main Causes of Discharge Before a Period
Usually, leukorrhea is a sign that your reproductive system is working normally. However, sometimes it can also point to more serious medical conditions. While most do not require the help of a medical professional, others may need expert guidance and treatment. Whenever in doubt, contact Comprehensive OBGYN in Palm Beach.
That said, here are some of the most common reasons you may be experiencing leukorrhea.
Increased amounts of discharge can also happen due to pregnancy. In fact, this is one of the earliest signs that you may be pregnant. Since estrogen levels will be boosted, women will experience unusual, increased amounts of vaginal discharge during pregnancy. However, it is not always easy to differentiate normal discharge from unusual discharge – look for a slightly yellow or white discharge that is sticky.
To determine if you are experiencing normal pre-period discharge or if you are pregnant, look for the following symptoms. You may be pregnant if you experience some or all of the following:
- Missed menstruations
- Urge to urinate frequently
- Aching chest tissue or breasts
One of the main reasons why you may experience unusual discharge before your period is linked to the use of birth control. Since birth control will change the hormone levels in your body, you can experience more discharge. This is especially true if the contraceptive method is the hormone estrogen.
Yeast Infection (or Candidiasis)
Is it normal pre-period discharge or something more serious? Patients who notice a white discharge that is thick and resembles cottage cheese may have candidiasis or a yeast infection. In most cases, those with candidiasis will also feel burning or itching in the vagina. Fortunately, a yeast infection can be treated very easily.
Consult with a healthcare professional first. Your doctor will provide you with help and guidance. If you are pregnant, using birth control pills, or antibiotics, you may be at a higher risk of getting infections.
Sexually Transmitted Infection (or STI)
If you notice white discharge before your period, there is a possibility that you have a sexually transmitted infection or STI like trichomoniasis or chlamydia. If the discharge looks green or yellow, you may be dealing with gonorrhea. Patients with gonorrhea and chlamydia can also experience bleeding following penetrative vaginal intercourse, pain during urination, and pelvic pain. Additionally, white discharge before a period that is also foul-smelling is likely a sign of a sexually transmitted infection.
It is also important to mention that sexually transmitted infections do not always display symptoms. Make sure to schedule regular appointments with your OBGYN to ensure that you are STI-free. Sexually active individuals and those who have recently changed partners should visit a healthcare professional more frequently.
Unusual pre-period discharge can also be a sign of bacterial vaginosis. This is a common infection, and the cause remains a mystery. However, women who use harsh feminine products in or near the vagina or those who have recently changed sexual partners are at the highest risk of bacterial vaginosis. You may be dealing with this infection if you have pre-period discharge with a white or gray color and a fishy smell.
When Should I Seek Out Professional Help?
Generally, discharge is normal, and there is nothing to worry about. You are likely healthy if your discharge is white, clear, slippery, or sticky.
However, sometimes a white and thick discharge can be a clear sign of an infection. Usually, a green or yellow discharge with a strong, foul odor signals a sexually transmitted infection.
Reach out to a healthcare professional if you are experiencing any or all of the following symptoms:
- Pungent or fishy odors from the vagina
- Bleeding after sexual intercourse or between menstruations
- Burning, pain, or other signs of discomfort around or in your vagina
- Frothy discharge or discharge that resembles cottage cheese
- Sores or rashes without or with discharge
If left untreated, a sexually transmitted infection can lead to more severe health conditions, including infertility. Make sure to reach out to a healthcare professional at a clean and safe clinic for further evaluation and expert treatment. Getting diagnosed and treated as soon as possible maximizes the chances of recovery.
Give Us a Call Today
Are you feeling worried, anxious, or confused about your health? We are here to help you. If you are seeking the best, contact Comprehensive OBGYN in Palm Beach. Give us a call today to get started. Improve your life quality; you deserve it.