Increased vaginal discharge during pregnancy is a completely normal symptom.
Leucorrhea is the medical term used to refer to the increased amount of vaginal discharge that many women experience during pregnancy. Although it is a common sign in pregnancy, it does not have to happen to all women.
The type and amount of vaginal discharge will vary throughout pregnancy, but a sudden increase in vaginal discharge should be consulted with the gynecologist to ensure that there is no infection.
Why does the amount of vaginal discharge increase during pregnancy?
The increased production of estrogens that occurs during pregnancy stimulates the mucosa of the body, including the vaginal mucosa, causing an increase in the production of vaginal discharge.
The increased vaginal discharge that occurs during pregnancy serves to:
- help to soften the cervix, and therefore to promote dilation when the moment of delivery arrives.
- help to protect the birth canal from infection. The increased flow helps form the mucous plug, preventing the possible entry of bacteria that could potentially cause an infection.
How much flow is "normal" during pregnancy?
During pregnancy, a vaginal discharge is considered normal when it is similar to what is usually noticed around ovulation, but in a greater amount. Its color must be clear.
Near the end of pregnancy, the mucus plug may begin to lose, so a discharge that is slightly green or brown or tinged with blood may appear.
When should you see a doctor?
When vaginal discharge:
- it has a green or yellowish color.
- it has a thick consistency.
- it has a strong odor.
- is accompanied by redness and itching
It can be a sign of yeast infections, which are very common in pregnant women, due to changes in the levels of hormones in the vagina during pregnancy.
In these cases you should always consult your doctor, as it could indicate a cervical change or be a sign of infection, which could lead to complications during pregnancy such as premature delivery.
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