You might think that you know there is everything you need to know about the vagina, but you might be surprised at how much you still do not know. We all know for a fact that the vagina is a wonderful yet mysterious organ. It is not enough for you to know just its anatomy but you should also know its functions as well as to how to keep it healthy.
Here are some surprising facts about the vagina that you should know:
The vagina is just one part of the whole area.
Most people use the word ‘vagina’ when referring to a woman’s private parts. Technically, the term only describes the narrow canal that runs inside the body from the vulva (this is the visible area that includes the outer and inner labia, clitoris, and perineum) to the cervix (this is the lower portion of the uterus).
Vaginas look alike on the inside – generally.
What varies from one woman to another is the vulva. The clitoris does not have just one ‘normal’ size. The outer labia also vary in terms of its visibility. The inner labia (this is the part that looks like butterfly wings) might be hidden or it can also hang past the outer lips. Most women’s labia are not perfectly symmetrical as one side can usually be bigger than the other.
The surrounding area can have different colours.
The shade of your vaginal region is not necessarily related to the rest of your skin tone. Some light-skinned women can have brown or purplish labia, while a darker-skinned woman may have a lighter vulva. In some cases, different areas can have different colours. For instance, your labia can be on the darker side, yet your perineum can be pale pink.
Vaginal walls are pleated.
The walls of the vagina usually lie compressed against each other. However, when they need to open, the sides separate and widen like how a pleated skirt unfolds or an umbrella opens. The vagina can swell from half an inch wide to 2 inches wide and it can even get bigger – after all, a baby can pass through it.
The vagina benefits from regular exercise.
The pubococcygeus muscle is the main muscle of the pubic region. Working it out can definitely tone up the vagina. It does not just give you a tighter grip during sex but it can also help prevent urinary incontinence.
There are bacteria in the vagina.
Lactobacilli, good bacteria also found in yogurt, are present in the vagina. They keep bad microorganisms in check, helping you prevent infections.
The vagina is a self-cleaning organ.
There is no need to douche or wash the insides of the vagina. It cleans itself with discharge. The secretions flush out excess water, bacteria, and cells from the vaginal wall. When washing, you only need to wash the outside along the perineum and between the labial folds.