8 Things to know about the hymen

November 23, 2021

First of all, What is an hymen?

View pictures in App save up to 80% data.An hymen is a thin layer of tissue, that surrounds the opening of the female vagina.

Some women are born without much of a hymen. Other womens’ hymens cover a large portion of the vaginal opening. It is sometimes regarded as an indicator for virginity, in some cultures. It all depends on the woman. It is a greek word “membrane”.

However there are lots of misconceptions, myths and ignorance on what the hymen truly is;

I will be sure some facts we all need to know about the hymen, so we will be able to debunk the false misconceptions and myths.

1. Hymens do not look the same; I know this may sound surprising, but just as we all vary in our looks, so also does our hymen vary in looks. The hymens comes in different shapes and forms.

Some hymen may be larger than others, some have fringing, while others are more lobed-shaped, and some may also have round holes. The most common in young women, are those, shaped like a half-moon. There is no standard or criteria on how a normal hymen should look like. In fact, the idea that a hymen should look a certain way is particularly harmful.

2. The hymen doesn’t cover the vagina; the hymen is just a piece of skinfold surrounding the opening of the vagina. It does not cover the full vaginal opening, because menstrual blood can pass through it.

Just few number of women are born with imperforate hymen meaning an hymen, without opening, which partially covers the vaginal opening, or in rare cases, it may entirely block the opening, which may require surgery.

3. The hymen stretches, and not break; most people often talk about hymen being broken, but the truth of the matter is that the hymen does not break but only stretches.

4. Intimacy alone doesn’t cause the hymen to stretch or tear; contrary to what a lot of people often think, intimacy alone cannot tear the hymen.

Physical intense activities such as; horseriding, swimming, riding bicycles, climbing trees or jungle gyms, gymnastics, dancing, etc. And use of tampons, insertion of stuffs into the private part can make it stretch or tear.

5. There are different types of hymen; we have the;

Cribriform: hymen with several small openings through which menstrual blood can flow

Imperforate: no opening in the hymen

Microperforate: hymen with small opening.

Septate: hymen with thin band of tissue in the center.

Normal: hymen with a generally crescent shaped opening.

Imperforate, microperforate, and septate hymens interfer with menstrual flow and tampon use. In these cases, you can have a minor surgery (called a hymenectomy) to remove the extra tissue and open up the hymen so blood can flow through.

6. The hymen does not grow back, once stretched it can’t grow back.7. Some women are born with small or no hymen at all.

8. The hymen doesn’t have a proven medical purpose. Although it doesn’t have a specific function, it’s thought that hymen tissue remains as a vestige of vaginal development. Embryologically, it tended to keep germs and dirt out of the vagina.

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