Everything You Need to Know About Your Vagina
A woman’s gynecological health centers around an area of her body that can sometimes seem mysterious. Dr. David Ghozland, a Los Angeles OB/GYN, regularly helps educate his patients on topics such as vaginal health, vaginal rejuvenation and even vaginoplasty – a cosmetic procedure that improves the appearance of the vagina. The fact is, the more you know about how vagina works, what it looks like and how to keep it healthy, the happier and more self confident you are likely to feel.
For starters, it’s important to become familiar with the various parts of the vagina. According Cosmopolitan, “the word vagina describes only the narrow canal that runs inside your body from the vulva (the visible area that includes the inner and outer labia, clitoris, and perineum) to the cervix (the lower portion of the uterus)”. Becoming familiar with your vaginal appearance is as easy as examining yourself with a handheld mirror. Which begs the question: when it comes to appearance, what is “normal?”
According to Dr. Ghozland, every woman’s vagina is as unique as the woman herself. “Clitoral width can vary greatly, just like penis size or breast size,” he explains. “There is not one size that is considered normal.” Dr. Ghozland says that the outer labia can also vary, ranging from being barely visible to several inches in length. For some women, the inner labia are hidden while for others, they may hang past the outer lips. Most women’s labia aren’t perfectly symmetrical either — one side is typically larger. Colors of the vaginal region vary as well, ranging from brown or purplish to various shades of pink.
Vaginal size is another concern women may discuss with their OB/GYN. In general, the vagina is extremely elastic and can stretch during intercourse yet return to its usual tightness immediately afterwards. Despite some myths, vigorous sex is not a culprit when it comes to the vagina becoming slack or loose. Things may change, however, once a woman has a baby, especially if there is vaginal tearing or cutting during delivery. While certain exercises can help tone internal vaginal muscles, Dr. Ghozland says vaginoplasty and vaginal rejuvenation are relatively new surgical techniques that can not only improve the appearance of the vagina, but can also restore it to it’s former, pre-childbirth tightness. For many women, these options restore pleasurable intercourse and improves body self-confidence.
When it comes right down to it, there is nothing mysterious about a woman’s vagina. Keeping it healthy and “working properly” requires a little bit of knowledge, a lot of self care, and when needed, the support of a good OB/GYN who can help you look as young and vibrant as you feel.