What is the vagina?

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Jan L. Shifren, MD
Reproductive Endocrinology
The vagina is a 3- to 5-inch tube of highly elastic tissue that extends from the vaginal opening to the cervix, at the base of the uterus. Just inside the entrance of the vagina is a ridge of muscles. Normally, the vaginal walls rest against one another. During childbirth, however, the vagina stretches wide enough to allow the baby to pass through. The vagina is lined with a layer of cells that secrete fluid to keep the inner surfaces moist. Blood vessels are plentiful within the vaginal walls, but most of the nerve endings are clustered in the outer third of the vagina.

The vagina is one of the female genital organs, a muscular vault with a delicate mucosal surface that connects the entry of womb to the outside of the body. It has a complex web of nerve endings for sensation, arousal and rhythmic muscular contractions.

The vaginal surface has a fascinating ecosystem of organisms supported by hormones and secretions, intended to provide defense against infections and fuel the sperm on its journey to reach an egg.

The vagina is for mutual sexual pleasure as well as a path for sperm to fertilize eggs. It is a critical part of a healthy “root chakra” worth exploration in Yoga practice and your pelvic floor in Pilates! The Vagina is your temple; understand it, honor it & celebrate it!

Emily Nagoski
Emily Nagoski on behalf of Good In Bed
Psychology

The vagina is the birth canal. It’s a “potential space” about three inches long when it’s not aroused, composed of folds of delicate tissue. The walls of the vagina “sweat” (technically, it’s called “transudation”) when a woman becomes aroused. Also, two glands at

the entrance of the vagina produce additional lubrication. Only the outer third of the vagina is very sensitive, and this outer third is where you’ll find the G-spot. The most important fact about the vagina in terms of the G-spot is that it is angled, usually toward the abdomen.
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The vagina is a stretchy, tube-like structure that extends from the vaginal opening (introitus) to the cervix (the opening of the uterus). In adulthood, the vagina is able to stretch in all directions, thanks to elastic fibers and small wrinkles in the surface, called rugae. Thin, mucous secretions keep it moist.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.