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    Vulva, vagina, and breasts: Parts of the female anatomy explained

    Updated 19 January 2023 |
    Published 05 December 2022
    Fact Checked
    Medically reviewed by Dr. Sara Twogood, Obstetrician and gynecologist, Cedars-Sinai Medical Group, California, US
    Flo Fact-Checking Standards

    Every piece of content at Flo Health adheres to the highest editorial standards for language, style, and medical accuracy. To learn what we do to deliver the best health and lifestyle insights to you, check out our content review principles.

    How clued up are you on the key differences between your vulva and vagina, and what exactly is going on in your breasts during puberty? With the help of some diagrams, two Flo experts explain everything you need to know about female anatomy.

    Vagina, vulva … same thing, right? Both terms start with a V and refer to what’s between your legs, but they’re very different. 

    Although most people use the terms vulva and vagina interchangeably, it’s really important for our health and well-being to know how to correctly identify and label the different parts of our anatomy. And this includes your breasts. One of the key signs that you’ve hit puberty is your breasts will start to change shape, grow, and may become more sensitive. You can learn about all the ways your body changes during puberty using an app like Flo. 

    Changes in the way your body looks and feels can be hard to keep up with and wrap your head around. Here, two Flo medical board members explain everything you need to know about female anatomy including the difference between the vulva and vagina and why there’s no such thing as “normal.”

    Vagina vs. vulva: What’s the difference? 

    The vulva is the outer part of your genitals that you can see. The vagina is the inner, muscular canal that connects the vulva to the cervix (the small, donut-shaped muscle at the top of your vagina, connecting it to your uterus). A useful distinction to remember, right?

    “We know that a lot of adult women don’t know [the] correct terminology or details about their genitalia,” says Dr. Beth Schwartz, assistant professor of obstetrics and gynecology and pediatrics, Pennsylvania, US. “I can’t think of anywhere else on the body where that is true. Imagine someone not knowing the difference between their eyebrow and eyeball. It’s kind of the same thing.” 

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