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Is It Normal for Vaginal Odour to Change with a STD?
Is It Normal for Vaginal Odour to Change with a STD?

Is It Normal for Vaginal Odour to Change with a STD?

Vaginal fishy odour accompanied with a white, yellow, or greenish discharge, is usually an indication of an infection. Therefore, identifying the cause is essential as it could indicate a STD and start the necessary treatment. In this blog, we'll talk about STDs that often smell bad and are associated with a vaginal infection.

To begin with, is it typical for an STD to cause a change in vaginal odour? Yes, an unpleasant and fishy vaginal odour is a common side effect of STDs. Continue reading to learn more about vaginal odour and how an STD can affect it.

What is Vaginal Odour?

Several variables, including the menstrual cycle, personal hygiene, and sexual activity, can affect vaginal odour. A healthy vagina usually smells slightly acidic but not unpleasant. A persistent, overpowering smell could be a sign of an underlying infection. There are many different types of vaginal odours, including metallic, earthy, musty, and fishy.

Is It Common for an STD to Cause a Change in Vaginal Odour?

Very often a change in vaginal odour is frequently the consequence of an infection and an STD. Thankfully, the vaginal odour is not always the result of an STD and serious concern but testing will determine the pathogen and any treatment required.

In actuality, vaginal odour is easily treated and can simply be the result of a physiological change in the body. Sweat, diet, and pregnancy are among the many natural causes of vaginal odour. Additionally, even if you believe your vaginal odour is due to an infection, you should seek help from a health care professional who will initiate testing, after an assessment, for any STDs to prevent infection of other people and resolve any health problems you may have.

For your guidance, the STDs that are frequently responsible for vaginal odour are listed below.

Typical STDs that Produce Vaginal Odour

  • Trichomoniasis:Trichomoniasis is a parasite-borne (similar to bacteria) is sexually transmitted infection that generates an unpleasant vaginal odour.
  • Chlamydia: Chlamydia can occasionally result in a yellow discharge that smells strongly.
  • Gonorrhea: Gonorrhea can produce a discharge that is yellow, white, or greenish and also smells bad.

How to Handle Vaginal Smell

Constantly worrying that someone might smell your vaginal odour can be embarrassing and may impair your self-esteem. Thankfully, vaginal odour can be treated because it is not irreversible. There are several ways to combat that unpleasant smell. Medications are the usual course of action to treat infections and sexually transmitted diseases.

Below are a few treatment options that can lessen any undesired vaginal odour. However these will not treat the underlying infection if you have one and should not be used as a substitute for prescribed medications.

  • Tea tree oil
  • Probiotics
  • Water
  • Fresh fruit and vegetables
  • Antiprotozoals
  • Antibiotics such as azithromycin and doxycycline

Diagnosis and Medical Assessment

Identification and a medical assessment if your vaginal odour, discomfort, or discharge is severe or persistent, you should always see a doctor. In addition to performing a comprehensive examination, your healthcare provider will inquire about your medical history and any associated symptoms. To look for any indications of infection, they might conduct a physical examination, which would include a pelvic exam.

Your healthcare provider may take vaginal swabs or order laboratory tests, such as a Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) test or culture, to accurately diagnose the pathogen causing the odour. These examinations assist in diagnosis and the results from any tests determine the course of appropriate treatment.

Treatment Options

Antifungal medications are used to treat yeast infections, whereas antibiotics are frequently prescribed for bacterial vaginosis (quite common) and some STDs. Even if symptoms improve, it is important to finish the prescribed course of medication to guarantee adequate treatment and avoid recurrence or drug resistance. To prevent further infections, your healthcare provider may advise lifestyle modifications i.e. avoiding irritants, safe sex, washing your hands after going to the toilet, and leading a better, healthy lifestyle.


The key to keeping the vagina healthy is preventing infections. The following are some precautions you can take:

  • Wash the external genital area with mild soap and water. Douses, scented items, and strong soaps should be avoided, as they may upset the vagina's bacterial balance.
  • Choose cotton underwear and avoid clothing that fits too tightly to promote healthy air circulation and reduce moisture accumulation.
  • Use condoms consistently and correctly to lower your risk of STDs. Adopt safe sex practices.
  • Avoid products with solid perfumes, harsh washing detergents, and intimate sprays that might irritate the sensitive vaginal tissues and cause irritation. Include fabric softeners that may not be sufficiently rinsed out.
  • Eat a balanced diet, exercise regularly, follow the programs for chronic illnesses like diabetes, and prioritise your general health. All of these things can have an affect on the health of your vagina.

Where to Get an STD Test?

If you believe you have an infection due to a change in vaginal odour have a STD test. As previously mentioned, to alleviate any worries and safeguard any sexual partners, it is advisable to get tested for any STDs, even if you believe your smelly vagina is the result of natural causes. STD testing is best and quickly done using a private testing facility and relatively inexpensive.

When you use the special private testing facility, you get a discreet and private service. Our personnel give information and advice regarding our tests. If your test results are positive, our doctor will be able to see you for further advice if necessary. Accurate compliance with registered approved testing laboratories affords confidence and the dependability of our findings. Results are fast, within a two-to-five day turnaround time.

Personal Testing for STDs at our Sexual Health Centre

There is a selection of STD tests at our Sexual Health Centre that identifies separate and multiples of infections and every common STD. The tests can all reveal the potential reasons for vaginal odour and more serious infections can be either investigated further or ruled out. Please check out our tests to determine which you believe is most appropriate for you. Alternatively, please do not hesitate to contact us if you need extra help from our doctor with a consultation about your symptoms where an examination and assessment will be performed or you can seek advice from other healthcare nurses you will assist you..


What are the signs that I have an STD?

Without testing, there is no way to know for sure. There are many STDs without overt symptoms. Anal, oral, and vaginal sex is examples of sexual activity. In reality, when doctors or nurses ask this question, they're trying to find out if you've done anything since your last examination that could have put you at risk for pregnancy or an STD. An STD test ought to be a part of your routine examination. However, please visit your doctor and request testing if you are even the slightest bit worried or suspect that you may have been in contact with a person with an STD.  We are available to help you with a quick and confidential appointment to resolve your issue promptly.

I am sexually transmitted. Has my partner betrayed me?

Not always but many STDs can stay hidden with no symptoms for years. Therefore, even though your partner might have given it to you, it's possible that they may have contracted it before your relationship. To prevent cross contamination and possible reinfection, you must both receive treatment and testing simultaneously.

Will oral sex expose me to an STD?

Indeed! It's a common misconception that oral sex cannot transmit sexually transmitted infections (STDs). This is untrue. Oral sex is a common way for gonorrhoea and herpes to spread.

If I'm a virgin, can I still get an STD?

It truly depends on your definition of what a virgin is. As previously stated, oral and anal sex can spread Sexually Transmitted Diseases (STDs); however, a common misconception is that a person is still considered virgin if they haven't engaged in vaginal sex. Intimate skin-to-skin contact can spread certain sexually transmitted diseases, even in situations where there is no penetration.

Do condoms effectively prevent all STDs?

Although they won't always work, condoms are a great way to protect yourself against sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) that are transferred through bodily fluids like semen or vaginal secretions. When it comes to preventing the spread of sexually transmitted diseases, they are not as effective.

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