Q:

What is discharge after pregnancy?

A:

Quick Answer

According to WebMD, women immediately experience a bloody red discharge following pregnancy called lochia. Lochia usually lasts for two to four weeks and gradually changes color during this time.

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Full Answer

WebMD states that lochia turns from being blood red to a pinkish color within a week. After about 10 days, it changes to a white or yellow color. While lochia reaches its peak within the first two to four weeks following delivery, WebMD also notes that it can come and go for two months.

In addition to vaginal discharge, Mayo Clinic states that vaginal bleeding is normal. However, it also recommends contacting a health care provider if the discharge or bleeding soaks a sanitary pad in an hour or less while a woman is lying down. In addition, women who experience a foul odor coming from the discharge should seek medical advice as should those who pass blood clots that are larger than a golf ball. According to Healthline, women who notice a sudden increase in bleeding should also contact a health care provider.

WebMD also recommends that women do not resume sexual activity until the lochia disappears altogether. During this period, Mayo Clinic recommends using sanitary towels rather than tampons. Doing this reduces the risk of infection.

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