It is normal for a woman’s vagina to emit small amounts of fluid. This fluid or discharge may be clear, white or even cloudy. If vaginal discharge increases in quantity or changes its color into brown or even reddish brown, you may want to consult your doctor. Brown discharge after period could be nothing to worry about and completely normal. But it could also be a sign of a medical issue that needs some attention.
Brown Discharge After Period, Why?
Most women experience many different things as part of the normal process of being a female. It is difficult to differentiate what’s normal and what’s not, especially when it comes to the vagina discharge. Here are 11 causes for having a brown discharge after period:
1. Early Menopause
The first cause for brown discharge could be early menopause. Spotting after your period is part of the transition from regular menstrual cycle to menopause. As long as it is not accompanied by cramping and heavy bleeding, you don’t have to worry about anything serious.
2. Delayed Period
It is normal to find some brown spotting after your period, especially if your period is late. After your delayed period, your body has to clean the remaining shedding of uterus lining, which could cause brown discharge. There is no need to worry but if it continues and appears to get heavy, contact your physician.
3. Bleeding from Implantation
If the brown discharge occurs around 3 or 4 weeks after your last period, if you have recently stopped your birth control pills and if you have unprotected sex, then this brown discharge could be a sign of implantation bleeding, which means you might be pregnant.
If you are always stressing out about something, or you have just been under a lot of pressure recently, it may be affecting your periods and causing you to have brown discharge between cycles. Stress could also cause your fertility levels to fluctuate, making it hard for you to conceive.
5. Hormonal Fluctuations
Again, if you have recently stopped taking birth control pills, this could trigger changes in your hormonal levels and result in a brown discharge after period. Besides, if you have thyroid issues, take certain medications, etc., your hormonal levels will fluctuate. This issue usually will resolve on its own, but if you are really worried or if it has affected your normal life, consult a doctor and have a thorough checkup.
6. Damage to a Reproductive Organ
One area of concern regarding brown discharge is that it could be blood from some kind of damages to one of the reproductive organs. You may have had a polyp or an abrasion that occurred on the uterus or the cervix.
7. Yeast Infections
A brown discharge is a common sign of a yeast infection. The irritation, burning and pain usually accompany the discharge which may have a foul odor. If you have had more than one yeast infection, you may have already experienced this. It is also common to have a yeast infection after taking antibiotics. If you have recurring yeast infections, you should speak with your doctor and ask for a better treatment option.
8. Bacterial Vaginosis
If you have a compromised immunity system, or you have not taken care of your vaginal cleanliness, you could have acquired bacterial vaginosis. This infection can easily be treated with antibiotics, so don’t hesitate to see your doctor.
9. Pelvic Inflammatory Disease
A brown discharge after period accompanied by an odor is just one of the symptoms of a pelvic inflammatory disease or PID. This is usually brought on by sexually transmitted diseases. If you have brown discharge along with a painful abdomen, difficulty having intercourse and tenderness in the stomach area, you should contact your health care provider as soon as possible.
Endometriosis is usually a painful condition where cells, similar to those forming the inside of uterus (endometriosis cells), grow outside of the uterus. These cells are the same with those that your body eliminates every month when you menstruate. Endometrial cells can attach on the ovaries, the outside of intestines or uterus, the fallopian tubes, vagina, cervix, etc. In endometriosis, these displaced abnormal cells and tissues will continue to thicken, break down and bleed on your every period, causing brown discharge after period. If this is the case, you have to get timely treatment to prevent severe complications like infertility and ovarian cancer.
11. Cervical Cancer
If your brown discharge lasts for at least three menstrual cycles, you should consult your doctor, especially if you are having heavy bleeding after having intercourse. These symptoms could be signs of uterine or cervical cancer.
How to Deal With Brown Discharge After Period
Most of the time, brown discharge after period is not anything serious to worry about. So in dealing with a brown discharge, sometimes waiting for a short time will help to eliminate this condition.
If it persists and if it takes on additional symptoms, such as vaginal dryness, bleeding or burning in the uterus, mood swings and painful intercourse, you should take this symptom more seriously.
You may have to undergo a pap test, speak to your gynecologist about medications to handle this situation, or adjust your diet and lifestyle. If it is considered a very serious situation, you may have to commit to chemotherapy or additional testing to further diagnose the cause and find a proper treatment.