External vaginal-Managing common vulvar skin conditions - Harvard Health

When it comes to anything related to bodies and sexual and reproductive health, most people wonder, "Am I normal? This article describes different types of vagina. We also discuss when to see a doctor based on the appearance of the vagina and factors such as discharge. Most studies reveal that vaginas share a general shape, but that there are many variations in length and width. When people refer to the vagina, they usually mean the visible, external part of the genitals.

External vaginal

First, you will see your vulva — all the external organs you can see outside your body. Further information: Sexual differentiation in humans and List of related male and female reproductive organs. Not everyone can reach this; External vaginal may help if you bring your knees and chest closer together so your finger can slide in farther. Archived from the original on 27 September The internal pudendal veins give drainage. Phil Schatz. The first is whether or not Metro north model trains undergo vagimal the second, if reconstruction is chosen, is what kind of reconstruction to have? External vaginal dinner plates Extermal depict an elaborate vulval form and they are arranged in a triangular vulva shape. Retrieved 3 March

Pamela anderson orgasm. Search Harvard Health Publishing

Share Facebook Tweet Email. Internal Vaginal Anatomy. Vulvar cancer can be treated successfully Candid foot gallery your doctor diagnoses it in the early External vaginal. About the Author. Low estrogen levels after menopause can result in thinning and dryness of the genital skin. A yeast infection is exactly what it sounds like: there's a yeast growing External vaginal your vagina where it shouldn't be, which can cause a lot of discomfort. Getty Images. It is normal for your vulva to have a smell that may vary at different vaginaal in your menstrual cycle. Subscribe to receive free vaginal Exfernal updates. Vaginal Health Guide Remedy. It protects the pubic bone and other delicate organs and bones in the pelvic area from the impact of sexual intercourse.

You may routinely pamper your face and work hard to keep it moisturized and irritation-free, but what have you done lately for the more sensitive skin of your vulva, the external genital area surrounding your vagina?

  • Most women have dealt with vaginal itching at some point in their lives—and it can be a huge discomfort whenever you experience it.
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  • Vulva is the general name given to the external parts of the female genitals.
  • We have done the overview of the vaginal anatomy.
  • At Healthfully, we strive to deliver objective content that is accurate and up-to-date.

The appearance, shape, and size of genitals vary from person to person as much as the shape and size of other body parts. There is a wide range of what is considered normal. Observing your own body can help you to learn what is normal for you. The following descriptions will be much clearer if you look at your genitals with a hand mirror while you read the text. Make sure you have enough time and privacy to feel relaxed. Try squatting on the floor and putting the mirror between your feet.

First, you will see your vulva — all the external organs you can see outside your body. People often confuse the vulva with the vagina. The vagina, also known as the birth canal, is inside your body. Only the opening of the vagina introitus can be seen from the outside. Unless you shave or wax around your vulva, the most obvious feature is the pubic hair, the first wisps of which are one of the early signs of puberty. After menopause, the hair thins out. Pubic hair covers the soft fatty tissue called the mons also mons veneris, mound of Venus, or mons pubis.

The mons lies over the pubic symphysis. This is the joint of the pubic bones, which are part of the pelvis, or hip girdle. You can feel the pubic bones beneath the mons pubis. As you spread your legs, you can see in the mirror that the hair continues between your legs and probably around your anus.

The anus is the outside opening of the rectum the end of the large intestine, or colon. The fatty tissue of the mons pubis also continues between your legs to form two labia majora, the outer lips of the vulva.

The hair-covered labia majora are also fatty, and their size, color and shape differ considerably among women. The labia majora surround the labia minora the inner lips of the vulva.

The labia minora are hairless and very sensitive to touch. This is the vestibule. Starting from the front, right below the mons, the inner lips join to form a soft fold of skin, or hood, over and covering the glans, or tip of the clitoris. Gently pull up the hood to view the glans. The glans is the spot most sensitive to sexual stimulation. Many people confuse the glans with the entire clitoris, but it is simply the most visible part. Let the hood slide back.

Extending from the hood up to the pubic symphysis, you can now feel a hardish, rubbery, movable rod right under the skin. It is sometimes sexually stimulating when touched. This is the body or shaft of the clitoris. It is connected to the bone by a suspensory ligament. You cannot feel this ligament or the next few organs described, but they are all important in sexual arousal and orgasm. At the point where you no longer feel the shaft of the clitoris, it divides into two parts, spreading out wishbone fashion but at a much wider angle, to form the crura singular: crus , the two anchoring wing tips of erectile tissue that attach to the pelvic bones.

The crura of the clitoris are about three inches long. Starting from where the shaft and crura meet, and continuing down along the sides of the vestibule, are two bundles of erectile tissue called the bulbs of the vestibule. The bulbs, along with the whole clitoris glans, shaft, crura , become firm and filled with blood during sexual arousal, as do the walls of the vagina.

Both the crura of the clitoris and the bulbs of the vestibule are covered in muscle tissue. This muscle helps to create tension and fullness during arousal and contracts during orgasm, playing an important role in the involuntary spasms felt at that time. The clitoris and vestibular bulbs are the only organs in the body solely for sexual sensation and arousal. They secrete a small amount of fluid during arousal.

Usually you cannot see or feel them. If you keep the inner lips spread and pull the hood of the clitoris back again, you will notice that the inner lips attach to the underside of the clitoris. Right below this attachment you will see a small dot or slit. This is the urinary opening, the outer opening of the urethra, a short about an inch and a half , thin tube leading to your bladder.

Below the opening of the urethra is the vaginal opening introitus. Around the vaginal opening you may be able to see the remains of the hymen, also known as the vaginal corona. This is a thin membrane just inside the vaginal opening, partially blocking the opening but almost never covering it completely. Vaginal coronas come in widely varying sizes and shapes. For most women they stretch easily—by a tampon, as well as a finger, a penis, or a dildo.

Even after the hymen has been stretched, little folds of tissue remain. If it hurts or you have trouble, take a deep breath and relax. You may be pushing at an awkward angle, your vagina may be dry, or you may be unconsciously tensing the muscles owing to fear of discomfort. Notice how the vaginal walls, which were touching each other, spread around and hug your fingers. Feel the soft folds of mucous membrane. These folds allow the vagina to stretch and to mold itself around whatever is inside, including fingers, a tampon, a penis, or a baby during childbirth.

The walls of the vagina may vary from almost dry to very wet. The vagina is likely to be drier before puberty, during breastfeeding, and after menopause, as well as during that part of the menstrual cycle right before and after the flow. Push gently against the walls of the vagina, and notice where the walls feel particularly sensitive to touch.

This sensitivity may occur only in the area closest to the vaginal opening, or in most or all of the vagina. However, any of the following may indicate an infection or another problem. Contact a healthcare provider if you experience:.

Many women experience intensely pleasurable sensations when this area is stimulated. There are differences of opinion over whether the G-spot is a distinct anatomical structure or whether the pleasure felt when the area is stimulated is due to its closeness to the bulbs of the clitoris. When your finger is halfway in, try to grip it with your vagina. That sensation you feel is a contraction of the of the pelvic floor muscles.

These muscles hold the pelvic organs in place and provide support for your other organs all the way up to your diaphragm, which is stretched across the bottom of your rib cage. Kegel exercises may help to strengthen the pelvic floor muscles. Only a thin wall of mucous membrane and connective tissue separates the vagina from the rectum, so you may be able to feel bumps on the back side of your vagina if you have some stool in the rectum.

Slide your middle finger as far back into your vagina as you can. Notice that your finger goes in toward the small of your back at an angle, not straight up the middle of your body. If you were standing, your vagina would be at about a degree angle to the floor. With your finger you may be able to just feel the deep end of your vagina, or the fornix.

Not everyone can reach this; it may help if you bring your knees and chest closer together so your finger can slide in farther. A little before the end of the vagina you can feel your cervix. The cervix feels like a nose with a small dimple in its center. It is sensitive to pressure but has no nerve endings on the surface.

The uterus changes position, color and shape during the menstrual cycle, as well as during puberty and menopause, so you may feel the cervix in a different place from one day to the next. Some days you can barely reach it. The vagina also lengthens slightly during sexual arousal, carrying the cervix deeper into the body. The dimple in the cervix is the os, or opening into the uterus. The entrance is very small. Normally, only menstrual fluid leaving the uterus, or seminal fluid entering the uterus, passes through the cervix.

No tampon, finger, or penis can go up through it, although it is capable of expanding enormously for a baby during labor and birth. Photo courtesy Assiouar Association. Vulva First, you will see your vulva — all the external organs you can see outside your body. Mons, or Mons Pubis Pubic hair covers the soft fatty tissue called the mons also mons veneris, mound of Venus, or mons pubis.

Labia Majora and Labia Minor The fatty tissue of the mons pubis also continues between your legs to form two labia majora, the outer lips of the vulva. Glans and Clitoris Starting from the front, right below the mons, the inner lips join to form a soft fold of skin, or hood, over and covering the glans, or tip of the clitoris. Clitoris Shaft Let the hood slide back. Vestibular Bulbs Starting from where the shaft and crura meet, and continuing down along the sides of the vestibule, are two bundles of erectile tissue called the bulbs of the vestibule.

Urinary Opening If you keep the inner lips spread and pull the hood of the clitoris back again, you will notice that the inner lips attach to the underside of the clitoris. Vaginal Opening and Hymen Below the opening of the urethra is the vaginal opening introitus. Pelvic Contractions When your finger is halfway in, try to grip it with your vagina.

Fornix Only a thin wall of mucous membrane and connective tissue separates the vagina from the rectum, so you may be able to feel bumps on the back side of your vagina if you have some stool in the rectum. Cervix A little before the end of the vagina you can feel your cervix. Altering Fetal Development.

I am working on a project aimed to better understand the problem of pain during sex — something experienced… Breast Reconstruction Options: What's Best for You? The first is whether or not to undergo reconstruction; the second, if reconstruction is chosen, is what kind of reconstruction to have?

Lastly, adolescent girls who are just starting to reach puberty may be suffering from a yeast infection; at this point it is imperative for young girls to have a clear understanding of proper hygiene. Additionally, certain strains of HPV sometimes lead to vulvar cancer, which might cause external vaginal itchiness. Home remedies for vaginal itching. When symptoms do appear, they typically include vaginal itching and an abnormal, foul-smelling discharge. Resolving the cause of pain - Medical Observer. Augmentation of antimicrobial metronidazole therapy of bacterial vaginosis with oral probiotic Lactobacillus rhamnosus GR-1 and Lactobacillus reuteri RC a randomized, double-blind, placebo controlled trial.

External vaginal

External vaginal. What Causes Vaginal Itch?

Every woman is different. There is no right or wrong about it. Most of us often think that our vaginal wetness comes from the vagina. In fact most of the lubrication comes from the Bartholin glands that line the walls of both vaginal lips. It is a small bud-like formation between the inner lips and the clitorial hood. The clitoris is a small body of pink spongy tissue that is highly responsive to sexual stimulation. During sexual arousal, the clitoris extends and the hood retracts to make the bud more accessible.

It becomes engorge with blood. Doubles its size and transforms into a firm, erect "button" which is highly sensitive to touch! Some of us may have small clitoris. While others have larger ones where the clitoral hood does not completely cover. This is the opening below the clitoris which is not related to sex or reproduction but for the passage of urine.

It is connected to the bladder. If your wiping from back to front you are introducing bacteria from the anus to the vagina and urethra. It is a thin swatch of membrane that partially covers the vaginal opening. Some women have a thin membrane that is easily torn by vigorous exercise or insertion of a tampon. Others might be born with very thick hymens that need to be surgically removed before they can have intercourse or inserting a tampon.

This is a short stretch of skin starting at the bottom of the vulva and extending to the anus. It often tears during child birth to allow the passage of the baby. After knowing these seven parts of the external vaginal anatomy, let us move on to the internal vaginal anatomy. A bnormal Vaginal Discharge. Eliminate Vaginal Odor. Excessive Vaginal Wetness. Internal Vaginal Anatomy. Smelly Vaginal odor. Helps in weight loss. Trimmer waistline. No more bulging tummy!

Subscribe to receive free vaginal health updates. All rights reserved. Diagram of the external vaginal anatomy. Symptoms of either a vaginal infection or vaginitis may include vaginal discharge , itching, burning, pain, and a strong odor.

While some vaginal infections are caused by sexually transmitted diseases, other very common ones are not. Some women seem to be more prone to vaginal infections than others for reasons that are not entirely obvious, says Gregory R.

But certain things can change the environment in the vagina, enabling bacterial or yeast overgrowth and causing symptoms. These include:. There are three very common types of vaginal infections, says Cynthia Krause, MD , assistant clinical professor of obstetrics and gynecology at Mount Sinai School of Medicine in New York City: yeast infections, bacterial vaginosis, and trichomoniasis, a sexually transmitted infection. The most common type of vaginitis, a yeast infection is caused by one of the many types of fungus known as candida.

According to Dr. Normally, candida live harmlessly in your body in small numbers, including in the vagina. But under certain conditions, an overgrowth of candida can occur, causing a vaginal infection. Those conditions might include hormone level changes due to pregnancy, birth control pills , or menstruation. Some other conditions that raise the risk of vaginal yeast infections include having frequent or chronic high blood sugar and having lowered immunity because of a medical condition such as HIV or AIDS.

Why bacteria levels change is not known, but the normal lactobacilli can be replaced by other, infection-causing bacteria. With bacterial vaginosis, a woman may see a thick or whitish discharge or one that is slippery and clear. It is not likely to itch or burn. A fishy odor may be noticeable, especially during intercourse.

The symptoms of trichomoniasis are similar to other vaginal infections: burning, irritation, redness, and swelling of the vulva, with a yellow-gray or greenish vaginal discharge, possibly with a fishy odor. Some women also experience pain during urination.

Some women will have a discharge with chlamydia and some will not.

Vulva & vaginal irritation | Jean Hailes

When it comes to anything related to bodies and sexual and reproductive health, most people wonder, "Am I normal? This article describes different types of vagina. We also discuss when to see a doctor based on the appearance of the vagina and factors such as discharge. Most studies reveal that vaginas share a general shape, but that there are many variations in length and width. When people refer to the vagina, they usually mean the visible, external part of the genitals.

The proper term for this area is the vulva. The vulva includes many structures, such as the labia majora and labia minora, or inner and outer lips. These are folds of skin that surround the vaginal opening and the urethral opening.

Depending on the size and shape of the external structures, the appearance of the vulva can vary widely. The outer lips of the vulva, or the labia majora, are longer in some people. The lips may hang low, and the skin may seem thin, or they may be thick and puffy. Some people have outer lips that hide the inner lips and clitoris almost entirely. In others, the outer lips may curve and meet at the ends, exposing some of the inner lips above. It is typical for the inner lips, or labia minora, to be visible.

They may dangle below the outer lips or otherwise be prominent. One inner lip may be longer than the other. Asymmetry in the labia is not necessarily a cause for concern. Some people may have short inner lips that the outer lips hide.

In others, the outer and inner lips are of similar length. Expert, evidence-based advice delivered straight to your inbox to help you take control of your health. If the outer and inner lips are small and close to the inner thighs, the clitoral hood, which hides the clitoris, may be visible. The inside of the vagina is like a long tube with folded areas that can expand and contract.

Some doctors compare this characteristic to an accordion. Imaging studies reveal that most vaginas are narrower toward the vaginal opening and wider toward the cervix. This usually forms a "V" shape, although the width at the widest point can vary. Their vagina can seem wider or looser following childbirth.

This is because the vaginal tissues expand to make room for a baby to pass down the birth canal. The vagina may resume its pre-pregnancy size, or it may remain slightly widened. The vagina can change in size, or length, to accommodate a tampon, finger, or penis, for example. It does this by stretching and elongating. This also moves the cervix and uterus upward. The length of the vagina varies, but the average length, when a person is not aroused, is just under 4 inches, according to an article in BJOG: An International Journal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology.

However, the length can range significantly from person to person, from about 2. In a study published in the International Urogynecology Journal , researchers used MRI to measure the length, width, and angles of participants' vaginas. They found that, in some cases, they could predict variations in length based on a participant's height and age, but not necessarily their weight.

For example, a taller person may have a longer vagina. Skin colors naturally vary, including the skin of the vulva. Doctors report the following colors of the vulva:. The color can also vary, depending on blood flow. During arousal, the flow of blood increases, and the vulva may appear purplish.

Some people note color changes when they have certain medical conditions. A yeast infection , for example, may cause the vulva to appear purple or red. The following factors can also influence the appearance or smell of the vulva, and they naturally vary from person to person:.

Pubic hair may help protect the genitals from bacterial illnesses. Pubic hair may also be a natural signal of reproductive maturity. Pubic hair that develops early — before age 8 — and excessive amounts of pubic hair may point to an increased risk of polycystic ovary syndrome.

Some people use the color and consistency of their discharge to track their fertility. For example, very stretchy discharge can occur during ovulation. Changes in vaginal discharge can indicate an infection, which requires medical attention.

See a doctor if discharge is green, gray, or foul-smelling. Learn more about the different types of vaginal discharge here. The vagina provides an exit for menstrual blood. The amount of blood that a person loses can vary from period to period. Some people tend to only have mild spotting, while others have heavy bleeding. A person can control their flow somewhat by taking hormonal medication, such as birth control pills. Anyone whose menstrual flow routinely soaks pads or makes them feel dizzy or short of breath should see a doctor.

They may have heavy menstrual flow , which can disrupt daily activities. The vagina naturally contains bacteria and yeasts that can cause odors.

The smell can vary from sweet to metallic. A person's menstrual cycle, their overall health, and the natural flora of the vagina can all affect vaginal odor. Usually, variations in vaginal smell are no cause for concern. However, a foul smell can indicate infection. Anyone who has concerns about their vagina or vulva should see a doctor. Some common concerns include:. For example, some people have a wall — called a vertical vaginal septum — in the vagina. The wall essentially creates two vaginas.

Most variations in shape, size, and color are healthy. However, if a person has concerns about their vagina or vulva, they should consult a doctor. A person's vulva is unique to them, and there are many possible variations in appearance. Stay in the know. Expert, evidence-based advice delivered straight to your inbox to help you take control of your health Sign Up. Factors that may affect the size of the vagina include height and age.

What to know about a loose vagina. The elasticity of the vagina can reduce over time. We investigate the causes and look at ways of tightening the pelvic floor muscles. Anyone who notices unusual changes in the appearance of their vulva should speak to a doctor.

External vaginal

External vaginal

External vaginal