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10 Things You Never Knew About Your Vagina

Wait, how is my vagina similar to a glass of wine?

The way I see it, there's no way anyone can know everything about their vagina. There has to be some rarely known facts about them that only doctors or scientists know. So when I went looking for these facts, most of them seemed like there was no way they could be true, or they seemed like they could be true, but I didn't know why.

I spoke with Dr. Laurence Orbuch, Director of GYN Laparoscopic Associates and the co-director of GynecologicRobotic Surgery at The Beth Israel Mount Sinai Hospital in New York City, about the hows and the whys of these bizarre (but really cool) vagina facts. 

1. When you're turned on, your clit basically gets a boner.
During female sexual arousal, the clitoris becomes engorged with blood. It does become erect and stick out. The size obviously varies person-to-person, but is not very large.

2. Your menstrual blood could help patients suffering from heart failure. 
An ERC (endometrial regenerative cells) congestive heart failure Phase II clinical trial is currently testing the safety of the ERC, or "stem cells" to treat congestive heart failure patients. Stem cells are extracted from the blood, and then grown in culture to generate different types of cells in the body. In this case the stem cells are made into muscle cells of the heart, for reparative purposes in these patients. This is an experimental foreign study, and is not something that is being done routinely, but yes it could help patients suffering from heart failure.

3. When you're turned on, your vagina doubles in size.
Women's vaginas can vary substantially in size and shape during sexual arousal. This is mainly due to tenting, which causes expansion of the upper two thirds of the vagina. The upward tenting also is thought to facilitate the movement of sperm up into the cervix. You know, for conception.

4. You might not have been born with a hymen at all.
The majority of women are born with a hymen, and they can have varying shapes and sizes. But if you don't have one, you'd probably never know it, as it doesn't have any impact on your sex life. More noticeable is a hymen that is not easily penetrated or torn—that can result in painful sex or even difficulty getting a penis into your vagina.

5. You may have more trouble reaching orgasm if you have a smaller clitoris. 
According to a study by the Journal of Sexual Medicine that used MRIs to measure 30 women's clitorises, of the 10 women who reported having trouble orgasming, all of them had clitorises that were farther from their vaginal opening. There isn't a lot of conclusive data outside of that, but it seems to be a good indicator that there's a possible correlation. Additionally, many women with smaller clitorises find that penetration-clit-stim combo vibrators (like The Rabbit) don't work well for them because the "ears" don't reach their clit.

6. There are 8,000 nerve endings in the clitoris, while the penis only has 4,000.
The clitoris does have many more sensory nerve endings than the penis, and stimulation can result in a cascade of immense nerve stimuli. (This may be why direct clitoral stimulation can be painful for some women.) Clitoral orgasm is therefore generally far more intense than male orgasm.

7. It's impossible to lose anything in your vagina.
The very top of the vagina is the cervix, an opening only big enough for microscopic sperm to get through. The vagina is a fixed space that doesn't continue up, so you can't permanently lose something in there. It's always retrievable. (Just make sure you're retrieving whatever it is with your hand—and trimmed fingernails—nothing sharp!)

8. It is possible for your vagina to fall out.
With utero-vaginal prolapse, the vagina or the uterus and vagina can protrude outside the body. This can happen after childbirth or after menopause from lack of pelvic support, but it's rare and repairable with surgery.

9. Your vagina can't get looser just because you have a lot of sex.
According to Dr. Justin J. Lehmiller, PhD and author of the blog Sex and Psychology, "the vagina naturally becomes looser when women are sexually aroused in order to prepare for intercourse—but after sex, everything goes back to its normal state. What does cause vaginal looseness? Older age and (for some women) childbirth."

10. Your vagina has the same pH level as a glass of wine.
The normal vaginal pH is 3.8 to 4.5.  Most wine pH's fall around 3 or 4; about 3.0 to 3.4 is desirable for white wines, while about 3.3 to 3.6 is best for reds.

Yes, but what does my vagina pair well with? What of that?


This article originally appeared on Minor edits have been made by the editors.