For most women, the first trimester of pregnancy changes everything. From hormones, to lifestyle, to body, to even emotions, you experience never-seen/felt-before transformations. But one of the first few changes you’ll notice almost immediately, happen down there. Yes, you read that right! Many women spot brown discharge during first trimester and that can be worrisome.
Vaginal Discharge: What’s Normal And What’s Not
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Pregnancy or not, a majority of women spot white or transparent vaginal discharge, especially during menstruation. And while some are normal, others aren’t. Here’s what you need to know about the types of vaginal discharge and the recommended course of action.
White: While white discharge is normal, if it thickens or itching accompanies it, that can indicate vaginal infection, and a doctor visit may be necessary.
Clear and sticky: During ovulation, a clear and sticky discharge may be secreted, thus making it fertile.
Clear and watery: Mostly after heavy exercise, a clear and watery discharge is released.
Yellow/Green: This coloured discharge can have a foul odour and could be a warning bell for an impending infection. Its best to consult a doctor and get properly treated if you spot this type of discharge.
Brown: Any remaining blood after menstruation might come out as a brown discharge. This is not necessarily a sign of worry since old blood looks brown. There are other reasons for a brown discharge and pregnancy is one of them.
Let us dig more into why you may spot brown discharge during the first trimester, associated complications, and the required course of action.
Is Brown Discharge During Pregnancy Good Or Bad?
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A brown discharge can occur at any stage of pregnancy, but brown discharge during the first trimester is usually harmless. The following factors cause a brown discharge during first trimester:
Hormonal changes: During pregnancy some hormones are at their peak while others are suppressed. These hormonal fluctuations in combination with an increased blood flow can make the cervix vulnerable, thus leading to brown discharge or spotting.
Sex in pregnancy: Indulging in sexual activity during pregnancy can aggravate the chances of brown discharge. This is a normal occurrence, and using a panty liner should help.
Pelvic examination: This is also a reason for brown discharge as your body is already fragile during pregnancy.
Complications Related To Brown Discharge In Pregnancy
In some cases, a brown discharge during the first trimester can be harmful and indicate one of the following:
Miscarriage: If you experience brown discharge accompanied by abdominal pain, please visit your doctor for further diagnosis.
Ectopic pregnancy: Brown discharge with stomach pain can be a sign of ectopic pregnancy and requires immediate medical attention.
Infection: Due to hormonal changes in pregnancy, fluctuations in estrogen level can cause a brown discharge and urinary tract infections. If you experience pain along with brown discharge, it is recommended to visit your doctor.
The Best Treatment Options For Brown Discharge
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Your healthcare provider will conduct an ultrasound and a pelvic examination to identify the underlying problem and determine the treatment option.
If you are suffering from an infection associated with brown discharge, your doctor will prescribe antibiotics depending on the type of infection.
For other conditions, its best to take sufficient rest, and in cases of emergency, your doctor may even consider inducing labour.
The first step of prevention is always to take care of your vaginal hygiene, as much as the hygiene of the rest of your body. But here are some additional handy tips if you are pregnant or planning to conceive:
Consume lots of water, eat healthy food with the right amount of nutrients, such as whole grains, fibres, proteins, etc. Limit the use of salt and sugar as well as alcohol and foods that can harm you and your child. Consume low-calorie foods and beverages, and monitor your weight.
Be physically active to maintain weight. Exercise during pregnancy, even if just a walk for 20 minutes.
Maintain a regular consumption of folic acid, vitamins, calcium, iron, and other nutrients via food as well as external supplements.
At the end its best to always be positive. This is one of the most underrated but essential factors that will boost your health and that of your baby. Rid yourself of any negative thoughts and stay happy.