How do the foreign bodies get in the vagina? What are the consequences? How to avoid the problem?
How do foreign bodies get in the vagina?
Some objects are made to be used in the vagina. For example, these are tampons, vaginal suppositories or other medications that are inserted into the vagina. All other objects that aren?t intended to be inserted into the vagina are inserted there by mistake or deliberately during sexual intercourse. These objects are termed ?foreign bodies? and can develop certain more or less unpleasant symptoms. Small objects don?t cause pain. This is usually caused by objects that are too big or that have sharp edges. In most cases, foreign bodies in the form of pieces of fabric are found in the vagina of young girls and adolescent girls who forget to remove a tampon from their vagina, or pieces of condoms remain inside. In adult women, these are mostly objects that were inserted during sexual intercourse, or they show signs of abuse. In most cases, foreign bodies in the vagina cause bleeding, swelling, infection, pain or a foul smell. Sometime foreign bodies also get in the vagina because of sexual exploration of one?s own body, where foreign bodies are forgotten in the vagina or can?t be pulled out. In children, these are often marker caps or crayons, but they don?t break the hymen.
Symptoms of vaginal foreign bodies
The presence of foreign bodies in the vagina most often causes an unpleasant vaginal discharge that has a strong smell and is yellow, pink or brown colour. Other symptoms are slight bleeding, itching and a foul smell. Foreign bodies also often affect the ability to urinate, which is disrupted or painful. Vaginal discharge can damage the skin around the vagina and cause an infection, or it can cause severe irritation to the skin. Large objects cause pain in the lower abdomen. Apart from the aforementioned symptoms, there are also redness, swelling and rash. The presence of a foreign body in the vagina also affects the natural balance of bacteria in the vagina, which can result in vaginitis (fungal infection of the vagina), which is transmitted through sexual contact. Treatment with antibiotics doesn?t remove a foreign body from the vagina, but it rarely happens that the foreign body causes serious complications, although professional literature reports of cases where an abscess developed or a foreign body left scars.
Seeking medical assistance
When you notice any unusual changes in the vaginal area, you have to see your gynecologist immediately, especially if you notice a discharge that is a strange color and has a fouls smell, or if you bleed. Whether it?s a tampon left in your vagina for several days or another object, each foreign body requires a medical examination and consultation. Unusual objects are normally removed under anesthesia in order to avoid pain and to loosen the vaginal walls. In children and adolescents, anesthesia is usually necessary because they are incapable of cooperating in various vaginal examinations. Removal of a foreign body often requires an operation after which frequent check-ups are recommended.
Removal of a foreign body without medical assistance
Some women can remove a foreign object without any medical assistance. All you need to do is insert your finger into your vagina, locate the foreign body and slowly and carefully pull it out or squeeze it out of your vagina. You have to make sure that you don?t damage your vagina or that the foreign body doesn?t break and is therefore only partially removed. It?s recommended that you remove foreign bodies while soaking in a hot bath and there?s usually no need to take antibiotics after the removal. If you have to remove large objects, it?s advisable to have them removed in a clinic where your vaginal walls are examined thoroughly after surgery. More complex operations require treatment with antibiotics.
How to prevent foreign bodies from entering the vagina?
Infections connected with invasion of the vagina by foreign bodies can be prevented by practicing good hygiene. Parents have to teach their children how to wipe themselves properly after going to the toilet in order to avoid the spread of bacteria on the vaginal area. Children should also be taught the correct names of private parts to be able to precisely define the painful area if it appears. In adult girls and women, the hygiene of private parts and care for them is very important. Tampons shouldn?t be left inside the vagina more than 6-8 hours and women also have to avoid sexual activities that include painful insertion of objects into the vagina.
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