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The appearance of foul-smelling vaginal discharge is usually a warning sign, as it tends to be a very common symptom of vaginal infections, which can be caused by bacteria, fungi or parasites.
In addition to the bad smell, which is often compared to the smell of fish, there may also be other symptoms that indicate infection such as burning, itching, burning when urinating, greenish-yellow discharge or pain during sexual intercourse.
It is recommended to consult a gynecologist to identify the cause of the foul-smelling discharge and initiate the most appropriate treatment which, depending on the cause, may include the use of antibiotics.
The main causes of foul-smelling discharge are:
1. Bacterial vaginosis
Bacterial vaginosis is an infection in the vagina normally caused by bacteria of the genus Gardnerella sp., causing the appearance of yellow or grayish vaginal discharge, with a pasty consistency and a strong and unpleasant smell similar to rotten fish.
In addition, this type of infection can cause the appearance of other symptoms such as itching on the outside of the vagina and burning or discomfort when urinating.
What to do: It is important to go to the gynecologist for the most appropriate treatment, which usually includes the use of oral or vaginal antibiotics, such as metronidazole or clindamycin, for For example, they should be used for the duration of treatment established by the doctor, as untreated vaginosis can increase the risk of contracting a sexually transmitted infection or pelvic inflammatory disease. Learn more about how bacterial vaginosis is treated.
Trichomoniasis is a sexually transmitted infection (STI) caused by the parasite Trichomonas vaginalis, and is characterized by the presence of a strong-smelling yellow or greenish-yellow discharge, and may be accompanied by minor vaginal bleeding, redness of the region and pain or burning when urinating.
What to do: the treatment of trichomoniasis should be guided by the gynecologist, who may indicate the use of antibiotics such as tinidazole or metronidazole, for 5 to 7 days. In addition, it is important to avoid intimate contact during treatment, and it is recommended that the sexual partner also performs the treatment even if he does not have symptoms of the disease, to avoid reinfection. Check out the main remedies for trichomoniasis indicated by the doctor.
Gonorrhea is a sexually transmitted disease caused by the bacterium Neisseria gonorrhoeae, which causes a yellowish, pus-like discharge that can sometimes smell bad.
In addition, pain or burning when urinating and urinary incontinence may occur.
What to do: you should go to the gynecologist for evaluation and start the most appropriate treatment, which consists of the use of antibiotics, such as azithromycin or ceftriaxone, for example, for 7 to 10 days. In addition, it is important to avoid intimate contact during treatment and the sexual partner should also consult a doctor to start treatment. See other treatment options for gonorrhea.
Chlamydia is a sexually transmitted infection caused by the bacteria Chlamydia trachomatis that can cause thick, odorless, yellow discharge. This infection can also be accompanied by other symptoms such as pain or burning when urinating and bleeding during intimate contact and when left untreated can cause pelvic inflammatory disease with foul-smelling discharge. Know how to identify all the symptoms of chlamydia.
What to do: the treatment indicated by the gynecologist should be followed, which includes the use of antibiotics such as azithromycin or doxycycline, and it is important to avoid intimate contact during treatment. In addition, the partner must also be treated, even if they do not show symptoms of the infection.
5. Forgetting the tampon or other object
Forgetting a tampon or an object such as a menstrual cup or condom, for example, for several days can also be a cause of foul-smelling discharge, usually with a smell similar to rotting, decomposed meat or a dead animal.
In addition to the smell, the discharge can also be yellow, green, pink, gray or brown, and can also be accompanied by other symptoms such as pain and discomfort when urinating, pelvic pain, fever and/or itching.
What to do: It is important to see the gynecologist as soon as possible for an evaluation and, if the tampon or other object is found inside the vagina, the doctor can remove it. it.If the woman has symptoms of infection, the doctor can also indicate the most appropriate treatment.
Check out in the following video how to identify what the discharge can be:
Treatment for foul-smelling discharge
Treatment for foul-smelling discharge depends on the cause and severity of the problem, and therefore, a gynecologist should be consulted to evaluate the intimate region and initiate the most appropriate treatment. Check out the main remedies indicated for each type of vaginal discharge.
Generally, the partner should undergo the same treatment as the woman and should avoid intimate contact during the infection so that it is completely cured. Check out the main
Home remedies for bad-smelling discharge
There are some home treatment options to reduce the discomfort caused by foul-smelling discharge, such as:
1. Sitz bath with guava leaves
Guava leaves have antibiotic properties, being an important ingredient to help in the treatment of vaginal infections.
- 30 g of guava leaves;
- 1 liter of water.
Boil 1 liter of water. Turn off the heat and add the guava leaves and close the pan for 3 to 5 minutes. Strain the leaves and place the tea in a bowl.
When it is at a tolerable temperature, sit in the basin without clothes to make a sitz bath, carefully washing the entire genital region until the water cools down. Repeat the procedure 2 to 3 times a day for 3 days.
2. Ingestion or local use of garlic
Raw garlic is a functional food that has antibacterial and antifungal properties, as well as being a source of fiber, vitamins and antioxidants that balance the intestinal flora and strengthen the immune system.That's why it's considered a great natural remedy to help treat bacterial vaginosis.
You can find raw garlic oil capsules at pharmacies or he alth food stores. The amount and length of time to take the capsules may vary, with 600 mg a day for 12 weeks before meals being generally recommended. Learn how to use garlic oil capsule.
Another way to use garlic in the treatment of foul-smelling discharge is to insert a clove of garlic into the vagina at bedtime, removing it in the morning, for 7 days in a row, as long as it is guided by the gynecologist.
3. Sitz bath with barbatimão bark
Barbatimão is a plant that fights inflammation, helps with healing, fights bacteria and therefore can be used to complement the treatment of infections such as gonorrhea and bacterial vaginosis, for example.
- 2 tablespoons of barbatimão peels;
- 1 liter of water.
Boil 1 liter of water and add the barbatimão peels, letting it boil for 10 minutes. Turn off the heat and let the mixture cool. Strain and transfer the mixture to a bowl. When it is at a tolerable temperature, sit in the basin, carefully washing the entire genital area until the water cools down. Take a sitz bath once a day for 3 days.
4. Sitz bath with mastic
Aroeira is a plant with anti-inflammatory and antimicrobial properties capable of fighting bacteria and fungi, and the bark of this plant is widely used in teas to help treat infections and vaginal discharges.
- 10 g of mastic peels;
- 1 and a half liters of water.
Boil the water and add the mastic peels. Let it boil for 10 minutes. Turn off the heat, strain and place the mixture in a bowl. When the tea is warm, sit in the basin without clothes to make a sitz bath, carefully washing the entire vagina until the water cools down. Do this sitz bath 3 times a day for 3 days.
5. Sitz bath with pink pepper
Pink pepper is a medicinal plant that has anti-inflammatory and antimicrobial properties, which help fight bacteria and fungi, and the bark of this plant is widely used in the form of tea to help treat vaginal and smelly discharge.
- 10 g of pink pepper husks;
- 1 and a half liters of water.
Boil 1.5 liters of water and add the pink pepper husks, letting it boil for 10 minutes.Turn off the heat, strain and place the mixture in a bowl. When it is warm, at a tolerable temperature, sit in the basin, carefully washing the entire genital region until the water cools down. Take a sitz bath 3 times a day for 3 days.
How to eat
Some dietary changes can help reduce foul-smelling discharge as it helps balance the vaginal bacterial flora. Therefore, it is important to include 3 to 5 servings of fruits and vegetables in the diet, as well as probiotics, such as natural yogurt or kefir, as they help balance the pH of the vaginal flora, in addition to strengthening the immune system, accelerating treatment and helping to prevent new infections.