Causes Behind Smelly Period
Have you notice your periods smelling different such as rotten, metallic or fishy smell. Have you thought about why your period’s smell?
Menstrual bleeding consists of blood, uterine lining and unfertilised egg. A slight odour in your periods’ is common after the menstrual blood exits vagina. Several factors play a role in influencing the smell of your period blood, such as the presence of bacteria and vaginal pH.Nevertheless, smelly periods may also be a sign of the underlying health issue. Our article will discuss the different types of period smell and when to contact your doctor.
Let us first learn about common odours that is associated with menstruation.
Different Types Of Period Smell
Metallic period smell –
Period blood smelling like metal such as copper is due to the presence of iron in the blood. It is not a cause of concern, and the smell persists only until the period ends.
Sweet-Smelling Period Blood –
Sweet-smelling period blood indicates the presence of bacteria in the vagina and due to an acidic environment.
If your period blood smells rotten, it may indicate underlying health issues. This type of smell is usually an indication of the presence of a foreign body left in the vagina for too long such as a tampon. It is essential to change tampon and pad after every 6 hours to prevent any infection.
Period Smelling Body Odor–
If you notice a smell similar to your body odorduring periods, it is due to the presence of the fluid excreted from apocrine sweat glands present in the genital area. This is mostly observed during periods of stress or anxiety and is different from the sweat lost during high temperatures or exercise.
Period Blood with Fishy Smell–
Fishy smell in menstrual blood is often related to infection caused to trichomoniasis and vaginosis. Bacterial vaginosis increases the vaginal alkalinity, due to which the fishy smell is pronounced during the period. Also, a person suffering from trichomoniasis, a sexually transmitted disease, may notice itching, soreness, and burning in the vaginal area along with an unusual fishy smell from the vagina and vaginal discharge.
Strong odour in period blood may cause worry if accompanied with other symptoms such as pelvic pain, vaginal discharge or heavy bleeding.
Can The Period Smell Be Improved?
Many a time, unusual smells during menstruation can be related to unhygienic practices. To improve unwanted odour bath daily, change your pad or tampon every 4-6 hours, depending on the flow, and wear loose underclothes. Never use any spray or cleaners to clean the vagina. Chemicals in these products irritate the vaginal area and lead to infection. Also, douche is not recommended as it creates an imbalance of vaginal flora and affects the level of vaginal acidity that leads to the growth of harmful infection causing bacteria.
What Is A Normal Period Smell And What Is Not Normal
Normal period smell:
Any kind of menstrual blood smell like death or rotten or fishy should be considered normal if the odor is not strong enough for people around you to sniff it.
Abnormal period smell – If your period blood flow smells rotten, you probably have forgotten the tampon inside, and if it smells fishy, it is due to infection.
* If period blood smells fishy, look for other signs and symptoms of infection such as irritation burning (especially while having sex or peeing) and white or grey vaginal discharge in between periods. See your doctor if the symptoms are suggestive of infection.
When to contact your doctor:
It is imperative to be aware of unusual or new smell during menstruation. See your doctor if you experience fever, severe pain in the pelvic and heavier bleeding along with smelly periods. Your health care provider will help you identify whether you have an infection or some other underlying condition that needs proper diagnosis and will decide treatment.
Dr. Ritu Kumari Gupta: Professionally a homeopathic doctor and a dietician Dr. Ritu Kumari Gupta is passionate about writing health and parenting blogs. She believes in holistic approach towards health and well being.