Your vagina is sometimes a mysterious part of the body. Maybe we’ll get to a point where we can freely talk about what’s going with our lady bits, but right now, even with our doctors, the tiniest detail can seem extremely TMI.
Luckily, Women’s Health asked its readers to submit (anonymously, because we get it, you’re shy) their most pressing questions about their vaginas, and had the experts answer right back!
IS IT NORMAL TO FEEL AROUSED WHEN I PEE?
“There are a lot of things that different women are aroused by,” says Kate Holloway, M.D., an ob-gyn at the Institute for Women’s Health in San Antonio.
And honestly, some people are turned on by the weirdest of things; your peeing is the least of them.
“I wouldn’t say some things are normal or abnormal.” Bottom line: Getting a little giddy when you hit the seat isn’t going to do any harm, so no need to freak out. But if it bothers you, feels uncomfortable, or is accompanied by a burning sensation, see your doctor to talk it through, suggests Holloway.
WHY DO I HAVE SMELLY, WHITE DISCHARGE?
“This is a very common complaint and question,” says Holloway, and here’s what you need to know: White discharge by itself isn’t an immediate cause for concern, as a variety of factors: hormones, your changing cycles, and might even be considered healthy or normal.
But if it’s paired with a strong odor though? Then it’s best to consult with your doctor immediately, as it could be a symptom of bacterial infection or sexually transmitted diseases.
WHY AM I GETTING MY PERIOD TWICE A MONTH?
A few day of Aunt Flo hanging around sucks already, but when she comes back for another round in the same month? Ugh!
Holloway says the average woman’s cycle ranges from 25 to 35 days, and if you are getting your period in less time than that, it’s either a hormonal issue like hypothyroidism, or your ovulation might be out of whack.
Set up a time to see your doc for an evaluation, as she’ll want to chat with you about your symptoms before diving into a physical exam to make sure everything checks out.
HOW DO I PREVENT MY VAGINA FROM “FARTING” DURING YOGA?
‘Queefs’ aren’t the same kind of gases coming out of your rectal region, as it’s more likely just air trapped in your vagina, maybe because of all the bendy and wacky poses. That doesn’t sound as bad, but why does queefing seem to happen just as the entire class is silent?
That’s because your pelvic floor muscles and abdominal muscles contract to push the air out, says Holloway.
“Wear a tampon to block the vagina so you can’t have any passage of air either in or out,” suggests Holloway. Then, you’re free to focus on your practice and not on strange noises coming from your nether regions.
HOW DO I STOP GETTING ACNE IN MY PUBIC AREA?
Consider putting down the razor for awhile, but if you have a big vacation to prep for, maybe try waxing or a laser session instead.
But if you’ve taken a break from the razor and those little bumps still haven’t cleared up, visit your gynecologist to make sure it’s not a rash or infection, Holloway said.
WHY DOES ONE OF MY LABIA LIPS HANG LOWER THAN THE OTHER?
“It’s a totally normal thing,” says Holloway. The labia minora of most women are asymmetrical, with one lip hanging lower than the other. If it doesn’t bug you, then don’t worry about it. But if it does, you could explore a procedure called labiaplasty that’ll correct the asymmetry, says Holloway.
While it’s completely normal, your vagina your rules, so pretty it up the way you want to.
WHY DOES MY VAGINA ITCH HORRIBLY BEFORE I GET MY PERIOD?
“There are hormonal changes that occur throughout the cycle that can cause lower estrogen levels right before the period,” says Holloway.
“That could lead to thinning of the vaginal skin, which can make it more dry, irritated, and potentially itchy.”
But if the itching is next-level I cannot go about my day like this horrible, then it’s time to get checked.
Holloway adds that anything associated with hormonal changes shouldn’t feel horrible, like a burning itch or whatnot, and a vaginal or skin infection could be to blame.