Itching & Vaginal discharge
‘Itching often accompanies discharge from the vagina.’
Discharge from the vagina can be both, normal or abnormal. Any abnormal discharge is accompanied by many symptoms, itching being the most common of all. There are many reasons that may cause discharge from the vagina along with itching. Itching usually occurs near the vagina or vulva. The management is entirely preventive and using anti-itching cream to manage itching around the vagina.
Discharge from the vagina consists of secretions from the vagina, which remove dead cells from the vagina and cervix, thereby preventing the occurrence of infection.
The glands present near the cervix and vagina produce clear mucus. This is commonly seen in women of childbearing age. The quantity of mucus secreted depends upon any hormonal changes, especially during the menstrual cycle.
Discharge from the vagina increases during:
- Sexual activity
Itching is more common with a discharge of abnormal colour, such as brown or green, which may occur during any infection of the vagina. Common infections, which may cause Itching & Vaginal discharge itching may include:
- Sexually Transmitted Diseases (STDs), such as gonorrhoea and Chlamydia
- Yeast infection of the vagina
- Overgrowth of the normal bacteria, which reside in the vagina (bacterial vaginosis) resulting in a gray coloured Itching & Vaginal discharge that has a fishy odour
Other causes of itching and vaginal discharge may include:
- Menopause along with decreased levels of oestrogen that may cause dryness of vagina
- Left over tampon or other foreign body that may result in a foul odour.
- Chemicals present in fabric softeners, detergents, feminine creams, ointments, douches, sprays and contraceptive jellies, foams or creams that may cause irritation of the vagina or the surrounding skin
- Cancer of the cervix
- Allergy or irritation
Your physician will enquire about your medical history in detail, and perform a physical examination. The provider may take samples of the discharge from the cervix and perform Pap test for further examination.
Keeping the area around the vagina clean is helpful in preventing inflammation and itching of the vagina. Your physician may recommend you to:
- Stop or avoid the use of soap in the area
- Soak the area in warm water (not in hot baths)
- Avoid douching, because douching removes harmless bacteria in the vagina, thereby, increasing the risk of infection
- Keeping the area clean and dry
Allowing more air to reach the vagina can also prevent itching during vaginal discharge. This can be done by:
- Wearing loose-fitted clothes
- Wearing cotton panties
- Washing carefully after using the bathroom
Apart from the above, practicing safe sex, and using condoms can also prevent the spread of infections.
Your physician may prescribe anti-itch cream to provide quick relief.
Women should always consult their physician in case the itching around the vagina does not subside within 4 to 6 weeks.
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