Regularly do VSE
To find out if something out of the ordinary is happening to your external genitalia, you must regularly perform VSE. If you regularly examine your vulva and vagina, you’ll immediately know when some things are amiss. This can be done at least once a month, or as often as you want.
Reminders on How to Do a Vaginal Self-Exam
Now that you know how to do a vaginal self-exam, it’s time for some reminders:
- The best time to do a VSE is between your menstrual periods.
- Do not use any cream or douche before the vaginal self-exam.
- Make sure that your hands are clean before conducting a VSE.
- As long as you relax your muscles, there should be little to no discomfort. If you feel pain, then there’s a possibility of a vaginal infection or the presence of sores.
- Doing vaginal self-exam is relatively safe.
- VSE should never replace a doctor’s examination, particularly a pelvic exam or a smear test.
When to See a Doctor
In the instructions on how to do a vaginal self-exam, we have discussed what the normal findings are supposed to be. If you notice anything that’s not normal, then you need to consult a doctor for a proper diagnosis.
Examples of things you must NOT find during the VSE include:
- Unusual vaginal odor
- Grey, green, yellow, or bloody vaginal discharge
- Foamy discharge
- Sores or genital warts on the vulva
- Unusual growths in the vagina
Sometimes, you may find unusual redness on the labia. If you do, think back on your past activities that might have triggered the irritation. The labia could have been irritated by recent sexual intercourse or a new feminine product. Should you find no reason for the irritation and redness, it’s still best to consult your doctor.
Vaginal Rash: All You Need To Know