Most girls tend to call everything 'down there' their vagina - they don't know the proper names for their own anatomy - vulva, labia majora, labia minora, clitoris. No two girls are exactly alike. Labia minora come in all different lengths (up to nearly 3 inches), sizes, textures and colors and they do NOT have to be identical.
All people have their own unique musky scent and yours will smell stronger to you than to others. Alcohol, drugs, cigarettes, illness, medication, hormones, exercise and even diet can effect your scent. Your scent will also get stronger when you are sexually aroused or when you sweat (exercise). The musky scent will be most noticeable in your arm pits and groin area. The fastest way to improve/change your scent is to add 1 teaspoon of apple cider vinegar to an 8 ounce glass of water and drink 2-3 a day for a few days. Changing your diet can also help - drink more water, eat less red meat and more fruits and vegetables.
It is normal to have a white and/or clear wet mucus discharge daily, every other day, weekly, on and off throughout the day, on and off throughout your cycle. In my day they just called it discharge, now they call it cervical mucus/leukorrhea. It will accumulate in and around your vagina, in the folds of the labia minora and even above the clitoris. It's part of the female reproductive cycle. The vagina is self-cleaning. This same discharge increases the closer you get to ovulation and when you are sexually aroused. It is what makes sex possible. You can have this normal discharge for weeks, months or even years before getting your first period. It will also continue after you get your period, after puberty and for the rest of your life.
Some girls do produce more discharge than others. You can wear a pantyliner if it bothers you. Do NOT use a tampon for every day discharge. The amount and consistency of your discharge can vary throughout your cycle due to hormones, diet, water intake, exercise, illness and medication, even if you have never experienced it before. Your normal white/clear discharge will turn yellow or dry yellow when exposed to air. If it is coming out yellow, then you probably have a bacterial infection and need to see a doctor. It will also stain your underwear, as it has a bleach-like effect.
Different Types of Discharge:
White: Thick, white discharge is common at the beginning and end of your cycle. Normal white discharge is not accompanied by itching. If itching is present, thick white discharge can indicate a yeast infection.
Clear and stretchy: This is "fertile" mucous and means you are ovulating.
Clear and watery: This occurs at different times of your cycle and can be particularly heavy after exercising.
Yellow or Green: May indicate an infection, especially if thick or clumpy like cottage cheese or has a foul odor.
Spotting Blood/Brown Discharge: May happen right after periods, and is just "cleaning out" your vagina. Old blood looks brown. This may occur when you are ovulating/mid-cycle. Your first period can look like this also.
Different types of infections, which a girl can get at any time:
Signs of yeast infections:
White, cottage cheese-like discharge
Swelling and pain around the vulva
Buy Monistat 7 over-the-counter
Signs of bacterial vaginosis:
A white, gray or yellowish vaginal discharge
A fishy odor that is strongest after sex or after washing with soap
Itching or burning
Slight redness and swelling of the vagina or vulva
See a doctor, as this will not go away on its own
Always wipe front to back
Don't wear thongs
Take lots of probiotics
Yeast is a fungus referred to as Candida. Yeast is commonly present on normal human skin and in areas of moisture, such as the mouth and vagina.
Vaginal yeast infections occur when new yeast is introduced into the vaginal area, or when there is an increase in the quantity of yeast already present in the vagina relative to the quantity of normal bacteria.
If you have diabetes mellitus or are pregnant or taking oral contraceptives (birth control pills) or antibiotics you may get an infection. The use of douches or perfumed vaginal hygiene sprays may also increase a woman's risk of developing a vaginal yeast infection. Improper ventilation - say wearing nylons too long, tight pants, etc, can contribute to getting an infection.
No home remedy ever worked for me - tea tree oil, oregano oil, garlic, yogurt etc.
For persistent yeast infections Consider going on a yeast-free diet, no sugar (as sugar feeds yeast), no alcohol - so no cakes, candy, sweets, etc.
*Take Lots of acidophilus/probiotics or eat Unsweetened (plain) Yogurt
*Avoid tight jeans and other tight trousers/pants
*Wear cotton underwear during the day, no thongs
*Wear no underwear to bed
Here's some things to try:
1. Put a tsp of apple cider vinegar in a 6-8 ounce glass of water and drink it 2-3 times a day.
2. Mix a tsp of Hydrogen Peroxide in a cup of water and pour over the area.
3. Fill a bathtub with just enough warm, not hot, water to create a sitz bath (enough water to cover your groin and just up to your belly). Add 2 cups of raw apple cider vinegar and sit in the bath with your knees folded toward your body (not stretched out flat). You can stay in this bath mixture for 15 minutes. Gently pat dry and make sure you are very dry before putting any clothes on. Wear only cotton underpants, preferably washed in natural unscented detergent.
Bladder infections are known as cystitis or inflammation of the bladder. Bladder infections are not serious if treated right away. But they tend to come back in some women. Most bladder infections are caused by various strains of E. coli, bacteria that normally live in the gut. Women sometimes get bladder infections after sex. Vaginal intercourse makes it easier for bacteria to reach the bladder through the urethra. The risk for bladder infection -- dubbed "honeymoon cystitis" -- increases with frequent sex. See a Doctor!
Symptoms of bladder infections may include:
- A burning sensation when urinating; this is the most common sign of a bladder infection.
- Frequent urge to urinate
- Passing only small amounts of urine at a time despite the urge to urinate
- Urine that is cloudy or bloody with a strong, foul odor
- A fever or chills; this may mean the infection has gone into the kidneys.
The symptoms of urinary tract infections include:
- Pain or burning during urination
- Abdominal pain in the area over the bladder
- A need to urinate immediately, as soon as any urine collects in the bladder
- Need to urinate frequently
- Passage of small amounts of urine at a time
- Need to get up from sleep to urinate
- Low back or flank pain
- Cloudy urine
- Bloody urine
- Bad-smelling urine
- In the elderly, lethargy and/or mental confusion; these may be signs of a more serious urinary tract infection.
If you must go swimming while on your period, always use a tampon or a menstrual cup. Blood does not stop in water. If you tilt your pelvis in just the right way, you may have an embarrassing accident. Water dilutes the blood to make it appear that there is no blood, but think about it, do an experiment....add a few drops of blood to the toilet bowl and notice that you can't see it when it is diluted.
Sexual Intercourse - If you aren't ready to be a parent, always use protection when having sex, even your first time. You can get pregnant the first time you have sex. If your partner does not use a condom, his semen will run out of you after having sex for a few days and it will carry his scent. It will also mix with your daily discharge and seem different to you.
The first time can be painful when the hymen breaks upon penetration. There can also be some blood from spotting to actual bleeding. Not all girls bleed and not all have pain. I never bled but there was a lot of pain. There doesn't have to be blood or pain, but due to the fact that most guys don't know what they are doing and girls 'give in' to having sex to please their partner instead of waiting until they are really ready and aroused, pain happens even if blood doesn't.
The average depth of a vagina is only 3-6 inches with most feeling in the first few inches. So if he goes too deep, depending on his length, he will bump your cervix and it can cause pain, bruising and even bleeding. If he doesn't use a condom, his semen will run out of you for a few days after having sex and it will carry his scent. Your increased discharge will also come out after sex.
Signs of orgasm in females: increase in blood pressure and pulse rate; breathing quickens; increase in vaginal lubrication; clitoris becomes erect and exposed; breasts become enlarged, nipples erect; skin flushes, particularly the face and chest; pelvic muscle spasms, causing vaginal contractions and orgasmic sensations. Could be throbbing, tingling, pulsating waves of pleasure. Some girls can have a female ejaculation (gushing, squirting), most girl do not.
The hymen is the thin membrane that sometimes covers the opening to the vagina if you're a virgin. Even if you haven't had sex, the hymen can do a bit of a disappearing act due to an overzealous workout at the gym, horseback riding, tampons, and even passionate "heavy petting" with your boyfriend. (It's not an impenetrable barrier, anyway, as it has holes to allow menstrual blood to escape.)
For some, the first few times might make you feel sore, as the vagina has been an unused muscle or even hurt if you aren't properly lubricated, or if the guy is in a hurry, doesn't arouse you and your body isn't ready. The vagina is a muscular tube, so before sex it is basically unused, not stretched, and that stretching that happens during sex, can cause pain as well.
Relaxing, foreplay, (oral sex, touching, kissing, etc) being fully aroused or better yet, you having an orgasm FIRST or using a lubricant like KY-Jelly or Astro-Glide can help.
If you are on birth control pills, learn how your particular pill works. If you take them daily like you are supposed to, you should never need to take Plan B.