How often is vaginal irritation normal?

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spotteddog
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How often is vaginal irritation normal?

Unread postby spotteddog » Fri Dec 13, 2019 1:17 pm

I feel like my vaginal area is always irritated to some extent. I shave it hairless, and if I shave too often it is irritated but if I skip it’s irritated from the stubby hair. I masturbate a lot (sometimes every day- or at least 3 times a week) and sometimes I’ll get a little rash going after. I’ve found switching toilet paper helps sometimes and some irritate me more. I’m not constantly irritated but I feel like maybe half the time I have some sort of weirdness going on.
I’ve never been tested for anything but at the regular doctor she said to make sure I clean good, and I’ve been cleaning better with soap and it has been a bit better. It’s not the vagina itself, but the labia, vulva and surrounding areas that get irritation. Is this normal?

Note: it isn’t that bad, just when I touch it or wipe sometimes it feel irritated/ I notice little cuts or minor irritation

Do other women experience this?

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Re: How often is vaginal irritation normal?

Unread postby Heather » Fri Dec 13, 2019 1:29 pm

If you're feeling like you're always having some irritation, I'd say it sounds like something is afoot. Irritation, when it happens, should be more occasional then it sounds like you're experiencing.

Since you're seeing little cuts, I'd suggest starting with a visit to a gynecologist so they can get a look at this. Little cuts can be a signal of something like a yeast infection or lichen, so you'll want to first have them rule out -- or diagnose -- infections like that. If this is about an infection, you can then also get the proper treatment.

That healthcare provider can also start looking into possible allergies or sensitivities in the event it's not an infection. Those can happen with toilet paper, soaps, lubricants, certain fibers (like the kinds used for underwear), the works.

Do you know how to access that kind of healthcare?
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

spotteddog
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Re: How often is vaginal irritation normal?

Unread postby spotteddog » Fri Dec 13, 2019 1:31 pm

I’ve gone to the gynecologist with my mom to talk about issues, but my mom was very controlling and limited what I could talk about

Heather
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Re: How often is vaginal irritation normal?

Unread postby Heather » Fri Dec 13, 2019 1:39 pm

Ooof. So, your Mom actually should not have been in the exam room with you, and unless you asked for her to be there, the staff at that healthcare providers office should have asked her to leave. That's their bad for not doing that.

Do you feel up to either a) seeking out a different one who does better for young people in that way, and b) trying again with that one, but letting them know -- I can tell you some covert ways to do this if you want -- that you do not want your Mom in the exam room?
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

Heather
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Re: How often is vaginal irritation normal?

Unread postby Heather » Fri Dec 13, 2019 1:41 pm

Btw, I also just noticed in your post history that you're on the birth control pill: sometimes the pill, or certain formulations, can also wind up resulting in irritation and other things that might be part of this, just FYI. If this is what whoever you see thinks this is about, they might suggest changing your formulation.
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead

spotteddog
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Re: How often is vaginal irritation normal?

Unread postby spotteddog » Fri Dec 13, 2019 10:00 pm

Honestly he was kinda weird. He asked me if I was sexually actively (I am) by saying “I’m assuming you’re not active, I sure hope not” so of course I said no (plus with my mom sitting right there). I only went 1 time and never had a follow up. He seemed like more of the gyno who wanted to deliver babies bc they’re cute than dealing w health concerns

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Re: How often is vaginal irritation normal?

Unread postby Siân » Sat Dec 14, 2019 8:51 am

Ouch! What an unprofessional doctor. It sounds like finding someone else you can see for this kind of healthcare would be really valuable right now. Does that sound like something that would be an option for you?

spotteddog
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Re: How often is vaginal irritation normal?

Unread postby spotteddog » Sun Dec 15, 2019 8:23 am

Not right now. I am going to college next year but will be 17 the whole year, can I go to a doctor without parental permission/ insurance info/disclosure yet?

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Re: How often is vaginal irritation normal?

Unread postby Alexa » Sun Dec 15, 2019 11:04 am

Hi there:

The short answer is likely yes! The long answer is that it is State- and location-dependent. It can be helpful to chat with Planned Parenthood to find clinics that will help you in your area without using your insurance. I want to share a couple of resources -- the first is this list of States and their policies on parental permission and notification. The second is this great answer to another question, which includes this gem by Joanna Dawson that might be helpful:

Let’s start by locating and figuring out where you should go to get birth control. There are many different credible sources like the American Sexual Health Association, Planned Parenthood, and even the MTV Get Yourself Tested (GYT) campaign that can help guide you to available clinics in your area. Once you’ve found a place to go, call and make an appointment! If you’re worried about the clinic calling home and breaking the news to your mom, don’t worry! We’ll get more into your legal protections shortly, but rest assured that if you tell the clinic NOT to notify you by phone to send a reminder, they are legally obligated not to do so. This is protected by Griswold v. Connecticut, a landmark 1965 Supreme Court ruling that shot down laws prohibiting distribution of contraceptives. Additionally, this ruling addressed rights to privacy for married couples and found a “zone of privacy” protected by language in the US Bill of Rights. These protections were extended to minors in a 1977 ruling. As a 16 year old woman, you have the full legal capacity to obtain a prescription and purchase birth control options.

When it comes to specific states, there are a few that have restrictions in place for parental consent. You can click here to check out your specific state restrictions (if any), and to make sure you know your protections. Overall, as a 16 year old, you pass most of the restrictions listed for states and should have no problem legally obtaining birth control without parental consent. Beyond sexual health regulations, there are additional rules in place to protect all of your health information. HIPAA rules force any health care providers to have securities in place to protect your information and maintain your privacy. This means if your mom (or anyone!) suspected you had an appointment at whatever clinic and called to ask them about you, the clinic is not going to tell her anything or even acknowledge that you are a patient there. If you want to share any of your information, you will have to sign documents that give them the freedom to do so. I mention all this because I think it is important for everyone to know their legal rights and protections. Health care is not out of your control - it is your body and you have the right to be aware! If you have heard of anyone being manipulated around these rulings, feel free to throw these cases back at them!


I hope that helps!
Alexa K.
Scarleteen Team


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