Vaginal discharge normally has the physiological role of cleaning and protecting the vagina. So, some amount of it is normal. It consists of a combination of cells and fluid. Its consistency and colour vary from sticky and whitish to watery and clear, depending on the stage of reproductive cycle.
However, if the discharge from your vagina has an unusual appearance and odour, or accompanied by pain or itching, then it may be an indication that something is wrong.
Most of the causes of abnormal discharge from your vagina are common infections, bacterial or fungal. However, sometimes it can be an indication of having contracted sexually transmitted disease, and if it is blood-tinged it could even be indicative of cervical cancer.
Treatment of vaginal discharge depends on the cause. It could vary from antibiotics and vaginal creams to avoiding any allergens that are irritating your vagina. In addition, you can think of trying some of these herbal remedies.
Effective Herbal Remedies For Vaginal Discharge
It is better to see your doctor or gynecologist if the vaginal discharge is green or yellow, clumpy like cottage cheese, or is giving off bad smell. Under the physician’s care you could also try the herbal remedies recommended below. Remember that herbal remedies cannot permanently cure abnormal vaginal discharge, but can alleviate temporarily the excess discharge.
The bulb of Allium sativum, or garlic, has proven antibacterial and antifungal properties. Take one clove/day or 1 tablet/day, which is equivalent to 4000-5000 micrograms of allicin, the active ingredient in garlic.
Garlic increases the risk of bleeding, so use caution if you are on blood-thinning medications, such as aspirin, clopidogrel, or warfarin. Garlic can also interact with other medications, particularly with those used in HIV.
Tea Tree Oil
Tea tree oil is prepared from the leaves of Melaleuca alternifolia. It contains terpinen-4-ol, which has antifungal and antibacterial properties. It is toxic if swallowed, so do not take tea tree oil by mouth.
Tea tree oil should not be applied in full strength to the vaginal area. Dilute it before applying. It could cause dryness, stinging, burning, itching, and redness.
The extract is prepared from the flowers, leaves and root of Echinacea purpurea. It contains polysaccharides, which are known to boost the immune system and thus help in fighting infection.
Take 300 mg of the powdered extract or 1-3 ml of tincture every day till the vaginal discharge resolves. Some side effects reported are unpleasant taste, nausea, vomiting, fever, sore throat, stomach pain, diarrhea, sleeplessness, and muscle and joint aches.
Goldenseal contains berberine, which has antibacterial and antifungal properties. Its extract is made from the root of Hydrastis canadensis.
It can be used orally or as a vaginal douche. Oral dose is 465 mg twice or thrice daily. It is safe in the short-term, but not enough is known about its long-term safety.
Ginger is the underground stem of Zingiber officinale. It contains phenol compounds, such as gingerols and shogaols, which have antibacterial and antifungal properties.
You can consume it either raw, or as tincture or capsules. Some of the side effects it can cause are heartburn, stomach discomfort, diarrhea, and increased menstrual bleeding.