For much of human history, the vagina has been to some extent a taboo subject if not entirely unspeakable, then certainly not something to discuss openly. In fact, there wasn’t even a medical term for the female sexual passage until around the 1680s. Before then, the Latin word “vagina” referred to a scabbard or sheath for a sword. So it shouldn’t be surprising that in the medical realm, the vagina and other female reproductive parts were long viewed as mysterious and even treacherous bits of anatomy.
The ancient Greek physician Aretaeus believed that the uterus wandered about the female body like an “animal within an animal,” causing illness as it banged into the spleen or liver. He also believed that it was drawn to fragrant smells, such that a physician could lure it back into place by presenting the vagina with pleasant scents.
As historian Thomas Laqueur has written, it was common belief at the time that men and women literally shared the same sexual organs. And so it has gone for the vagina its history is rife with myth, misunderstanding, and mistreatment.
“Women’s genitals are so sacred or so taboo that we can’t even talk about them at all, or if we do talk about them, if you’ve experienced pain or discomfort during penetration, you may be concerned your vagina is too small or too tight for sex. The truth is, it’s not. Almost no vagina is too tight for intercourse. Sometimes, however, you have to help prepare a bit more for penetration.
In its unaroused state, the vagina is three to four inches long. That might not seem long enough for some penises or sex toys. But when you’re aroused, your vagina grows longer and wider. It also releases a natural lubricant. If you experience pain or difficulty with penetration, it may be a sign you weren’t adequately aroused, not that you’re too tight. Additionally, pain during penetration may be a sign of a condition such as infection, injury, or congenital abnormality.
How does the vagina change?
The vagina changes a lot over a person’s lifetime. It’s designed to have sex and birth a baby. Both events change the shape and tightness of the vagina. Understanding these changes can help you know when you might have a problem. One major event that can make the vaginal muscles weaken is childbirth. Repetitive trauma to the muscles, such as the delivery of multiple large children for some women, may weaken the muscles over time.Some women may deliver many large children and have no muscle weakness. Much of this is due to genetic predisposition and collagen make-up of tissue. These weakened muscles might lead to urinary incontinence for example, leaking a few drops of pee when you laugh, cough, or sneeze. For some, these symptoms disappear a few weeks or months after childbirth, while for others, they persist long-term. Additionally, some people also experience weakened vaginal muscles when they go through menopause.
Does sitting on hot water tighten the vagina?
Sitting on hot water tighten the vagina is known as vaginal steaming, sometimes shortened to V-steaming, and also known as yoni steaming, is an alternative health treatment whereby a woman squats or sits over steaming water containing herbs such as mugwort, rosemary, wormwood, and basil. It has been practiced in Africa (Nigeria, Mozambique, South Africa), Asia (Indonesia, Thailand), and Central America (among the Q’eqchi’ people).
Vaginal steaming is described in spas as an ancient Korean treatment for reproductive organ ailments and is claimed to have other benefits. No empirical evidence supports any of these claims. It has become a fad for women in the Western world. In a paper for Culture, Health & Sexuality, Vandenburg and Braun argue that the rhetoric of vaginal steaming mirrors sexist Western discourse about the supposed inherent dirtiness of the female body, and that its claims of improved fertility and sexual pleasure continue the view that the female body exists for male sexual pleasure and childbearing.
There is no evidence that vaginal steaming has any benefits, while there is evidence to show it can be dangerous (for instance, causing a vaginal yeast infection(Toilet infection) due to an influx of bacteria.
Things You Should Not Do To Your Vagina
Some women like to use douches to clean the vagina, but in actuality, this is totally unnecessary. Douching is a known culprit when it comes to pelvic inflammatory disease (PID) and bacterial vaginosis. If you’re worried about keeping your vagina clean, the best thing you can do is wash your vulva with soap and water when you take a shower, being careful not to put any soap inside your vagina. See a doctor if you think something smells off. Ultimately, your vagina is self-cleaning, so it doesn’t need your help to make it cleaner.
As discussed earlier steaming your vagina at the spa or at home is not recommended. while any sort of warm treatment could feel good and enhance blood supply to the area, we’ve seen some burns come out of this and irritation from the types of herbs, so I would use significant caution of that. I’m not sure how effective this is to do anything anyway.”
- Tea tree oil
“If you’re using household oil as a lubricant, you need high-grade quality oil, not what you use in your kitchen to fry food. Use oil that is pH neutral, so for example, almond oil, coconut oil, olive oil, probably okay.” What you don’t want to use is tea tree oil, which can cause scary chemical burns: “it’s incredibly caustic and will cause a vaginal burn, so probably not okay.”
- Chocolate syrup
All that stuff has sugar which will change the bacteria and yeast proportions which can cause infections. Those substances can also be irritating to the vaginal skin, so it might seem like a good idea at the time, but you may have either vaginal irritation or a vaginal infection afterwards..
- Whipped cream
It’s really tough to get this stuff out, especially if it’s causing a reaction. Fair enough for sexual play if you want to put this stuff on the vulva or other portions of the body and get an erotic experience that’s fine. But we wouldn’t advise putting it inside.”
This is occasionally thought of as an easy form of lubricant, but according to experts Vaseline or any other type of petroleum product can actually be source of infection in the vagina.
- Yeast infection home remedies, like yogurt-soaked tampons
Sometimes when people have a yeast infection and they feel like [yogurt on a tampon] is a more natural way to treat it. Probably not a great idea. Bacteria and yeast love dark, moist places so I think that could be causing of infection.” If you suspect you have a yeast infection, get checked out by a doctor and if he/she gives her okay, treat it with the recommended medication instead of yogurt.
- Fruits and vegetables
For starters, the old wives’ tale is a lie: vegetables cannot take root inside your vagina and grow. There are some major concerns with putting veggies in there. Vegetables have pesticides, so you’re putting pesticides in your vagina which we don’t really recommend.
- Anything you’ve just used for butt stuff and haven’t yet cleaned
“We see ‘vaginal pH havoc,’ if you will, break out from [using a toy in the vagina that has just been used for anal play]. If you want to use a sex toy in the anal area, first of all, remember that it has to have some sort of a retrieval device, a string or something along that line. If you want to switch back and forth between vaginal and anal play then we recommend you wash the toy in between, and you may want to use a condom on some of the toys as well.”
- Any sharp objects
“The blood supply to the inside of the vagina is so rich that even the smallest cut can cause incredible amounts of bleeding and although it’s a forgiving area and typically will heal, that’s not a chance that you really want to take.
- A hair brush handle
“I can only imagine a handle getting stuck inside the vagina or some trauma being caused, so I can’t really condone that.
- An electric toothbrush
If that vibration of a toothbrush floats your boat, use it clitorally rather than inside the vagina so that it’s external stimulation. As a rule we we do not recommend you putting any type of household items in there.