One vital smart self-care is to keep an eye on your vaginal discharge. Most women aren’t sure what’s normal and what’s not. Normal discharge is white in color, clean and free of infection and germs, which helps your vagina stay lubricated. If your discharge smells or looks abnormal, this may indicate some sort of health issues. You should also keep in mind that the menstrual cycle strongly influences your vaginal discharge, meaning that every woman may have unique experience of discharge after ovulation. If you are pregnant, you will also notice changes in your discharge during this time.
What’s Discharge After Ovulation Like?
Whether or not you notice discharge after your ovulation, this is completely normal. Some women will experience this discharge while others do not. In some cases, you may have so little cervical mucus following ovulation that you do not even notice it. Most women will need to actually check their cervix to see if it is present. This is because the area begins to dry up a bit since it has just been slippery and filled with mucus for days. After ovulation, the discharge also can become sticky and maybe cloudy in appearance. It will dry up in several days while your
body prepares for menstruation or implantation. Those who conceive after ovulation might notice a creamy white discharge that may continue for about nine months.
The cervical mucus provides multiple important functions, like allowing the sperm to get to the cervix and lead to conception. Because of this, it is typically abundant and slippery because this consistency is believed to be most beneficial for sperms. Following ovulation, this slippery nature is no longer necessary and discharge begins to dry up since there isn’t an egg waiting for fertilization.
Why Do I Have Discharge After Ovulation?
Although having discharge after ovulation is normal, there are some underlying reasons that you should pay close attention to so as to lead a healthier life.
When you douche, you upset your bacterial balance within the vagina with less good bacteria and more bad bacteria, which can cause discharge. Douching is completely unnecessary and most bad smells come from outside the vagina.
In some cases, an increased amount of discharge after ovulation will indicate pregnancy. Within the beginning few days of pregnancy, mucus starts accumulating by the cervical opening where it will serve as a plug or barrier that protects your baby. It is possible to see extra discharge due to the excess mucus. You will also have higher progesterone levels during pregnancy and this hormonal increase leads to extra lubrication, which in turn leads to increased vaginal discharge.
3. Brown Discharge After Ovulation
Sometimes you will notice brown discharge after your ovulation, which should be perfectly normal. Here are two main reasons of why this happens.
- Leftover Blood: Brown discharge after your period is typical because the leftover blood from the period is being cleared out. Brown discharge following ovulation may simply indicate that decomposed leftover blood was picked up by other mucus discharge.
- Implantation: Brown discharge may also be implantation bleeding, a sign of pregnancy. This happens between 6 and 12 days following ovulation when a fertilized egg becomes implanted in the uterus. Keep in mind that only about a third of women have reported implantation bleeding before pregnancy.
In cases when you have discharge after ovulation that is accompanied by an odd color, foul smell, itchiness or burning, it may be an infection.
If you are sexually active, you may notice discharge at any point in your menstrual cycle, including after ovulation. You should always visit your doctor if your discharge changes in any way, such as odor, amount, color or texture. Gonorrhea, chlamydia and trichomoniasis can all affect your discharge. In case of trichomoniasis, you will typically just notice green or yellow discharges with a foul smell. Sometimes you may also notice vaginal inflammation, pain during urination or itching.
6. Bacterial Vaginosis
Discharge from bacterial vaginosis is typically gray or white, but it can be yellow. This discharge will smell like fish because of the bacteria. It typically becomes more noticeable after washing with soap or following intercourse and may be accompanied by redness or itching.
7. Yeast Infection
A yeast infection is the most common possible cause of discharge before, after and during ovulation. These are due to increased quantities of Candida, a fungus. The discharge is white and typically resembles cottage cheese. Other symptoms may include burning, itching, soreness or pain during intercourse.
8. Cervical Cancer
If you contract an HPV infection through sexual contact, it can cause cervical cancer. There may not be any symptoms or you may notice water discharge or bloody, brown discharge accompanied by a foul odor. You can easily prevent it by practicing safe sex or find this type of cancer with annual HPV testing and pap smears.
9. Other Causes
Sometimes discharge after ovulation may be due to dietary or hormonal changes. Those who are on a birth control pill, for example, may notice increased discharge at ovulation because of progesterone in their pill. If you notice continued discharge following ovulation, you may want to talk to your doctor about changing pills.
More Tips on Dealing With Vaginal Discharge
Now that you know the possible causes of discharge after ovulation, you should know what to do about it if it’s problematic.
Home Care: If you suspect a yeast infection, you can apply over-the-counter antifungal creams. Cold compresses can help relieve discomfort, swelling or itching of the vulva. Once you start treatment, always use a condom if you have intercourse within a week. Be sure to visit your doctor if your symptoms last over a week.
When to See a Doctor: You will want to see your doctor if you notice spotting or bleeding unrelated to your period, have a strong vaginal odor or have discharge that is cheese-like, thick, yellowish or greenish. Also make an appointment if you notice irritation, burning, itching or redness of the vagina or the surrounding skin.