Located inside the body, the vagina is a flattened muscular tube connected to the uterus. For now, we’ll be focusing on the vagina only.
It is divided into two parts, the outer third that is closest to the opening and the inner two thirds. Before we explore that, let’s take a closer look at the vaginal environment because it is pretty special and different!
The environment inside the vagina is unique. It is warm and moist feels kind of like the inside of your mouth.
This unique environment is home to a large number of vaginal flora: a variety of friendly bacteria and friendly fungal organisms. Our vaginal flora keeps our vagina happy and healthy.
One of the ways these friendly bacteria keep our vagina happy is by converting sugars into lactic acid. This makes the vagina mildly acidic with a pH of around 4.0 to 5.0 and this actually helps prevent the growth of harmful bacteria.
It may be weird to think there are bacteria and fungal organisms living in our vagina but they actually live in symbiosis with us and are crucial for keeping our vagina healthy.
The vagina is also self-cleaning meaning you don’t need to use vaginal douches to clean your vagina. Every day, your vagina releases vaginal discharge that cleanses the vagina while still keeping all your vaginal flora happy and balanced!
This part is tighter, more muscular , and has more nerves than the inner two thirds making it more sensitive to touch. This is why sometimes it hurts to insert or pull out a dry tampon.
This part is less muscular and has fewer nerves sensitive to touch than the outer third but this part is more sensitive to pressure. When you wear a tampon, this is the part where the tampon is worn.
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