What does a normal vulva look like?
Feel free to grab a mirror as you read this
MONS (or Mons Pubis)
LABIA MAJORA (outer labia)
LABIA MINORA (inner labia)
CLITORIS + GLANS
The internal female anatomy includes the parts you can’t see (obviously), but where all the reproductive action happens – the vagina, cervix, uterus, fallopian tubes and ovaries. Whether or not a baby is present, the hormonal functions of these organs will always impact daily life.
This is the muscular tube that connects the external genitals to the cervix of the uterus. The vagina is approximately 2 to 4 inches long and can double in length when a woman is aroused. The walls of the vagina can be described as layers of wrinkles or folds of tissue. Menstrual blood flows from the uterus through the cervix, and exits the body through the vagina. Mucus is generated to keep the vagina moist, enable lubrication for sex, trap semen for conception, and to cleanse the vagina after menses. How much mucus the vagina generates during a cycle varies; it usually increases about two weeks prior to menstruation. The discharge is a natural occurrence and helps maintain the health of the vagina by removing bacteria that may have entered through the vaginal opening. The characteristics of discharge — amount, color, and texture — also vary from woman to woman. The most unique feature of the vagina is its elasticity. It can accommodate a penis, the head of a baby, and of course, a menstrual cup!
Located just inside the opening to the vagina, the hymen — also known as the vaginal corona — is a thin membrane of tissue that partially covers the vaginal opening. In many young girls and women, it is difficult to identify the hymen or differentiate it from the vaginal opening tissue. And in other women, the corona has never been intact. The absence of a hymen is not a sign of lost virginity since it can be broken during many non-sexual activities, like sports. The corona tends to erode over time due to hormones, natural discharge, and vaginal sex.
The pubic bone is actually the joint where the two halves of the pelvis meet and is inside the vagina about 1 to 2 inches. Being able to identify the curve of the pubic bone from within the vagina is important for the proper placement of a menstrual cup. A menstrual cup needs to be positioned just beyond the pubic bone so it doesn’t expel.
The Grafenberg spot, more commonly known as the G-spot, is located on the front wall of the vagina (abdomen side) just past the pubic bone and has a somewhat spongy feel. It may be difficult to find if your fingers can’t reach, but keep in mind that it may be elusive to pinpoint. However, for many women it is an erotic zone that has the potential to contribute greatly to their sexual arousal.
The pelvic floor, or pelvic diaphragm, is located underneath the pelvis and can be described as a sling of muscles and connective tissue spanning the pelvic opening. The pelvic floor provides support for the uterus and vagina as well as other organs in this area of the body including the bladder, intestines and rectum. The muscles and tissue hold these organs in place and allow them to function correctly.
The female reproductive system has two functions: The first is to produce egg cells, and the second is to protect and nourish the offspring until birth.
The uterus is a pear-shaped, muscular structure where a fetus develops during pregnancy. Every month, the female reproductive system goes through ovulation. It’s when a tiny egg says buh-bye to your ovaries and travels down one of your fallopian tubes towards the uterus. Pretty cool, huh? It get’s better.
If the egg isn’t fertilized (aka you’re not pregnant), it doesn’t attach to the beautiful walls of the uterus. Instead, the uterus sheds extra tissue lining and your unfertilized egg eventually makes its way out through your vaginal tube. Boom, you have your period. (where’s my menstrual cup?).
The fallopian tubes extend from either side of the uterus. It is through these tubes which an egg released during ovulation must travel to the uterus. If an egg is not fertilized, it passes through the cervix and vagina as part of the menstrual flow.
The ovaries are positioned on either side of the uterus. They produce and store eggs. The ovaries are approximately the size of a grape and have a lumpy appearance.
The cervix is the narrow, neck-like passage that forms the lower end of the uterus. If you search for it with your finger, it feels a bit like the tip of your nose. Menstrual blood leaves the uterus through the cervix where it passes through the vagina. Semen travels through the cervix to enter the uterus. And in pregnant women, the cervix stretches or “dilates” to allow the fetus to pass through during vaginal delivery. The position of the cervix varies for every woman and its position can change during the menstrual cycle as well as throughout a woman’s life. Being able to determine the position of the cervix is important for the correct placement of a contraceptive diaphragm or menstrual cup.