So, let's break down the main parts of the female genitalia with highlights on their sexual function.
External Female Genitals: the entire set of external organs is known as vulva.
- Mons pubis: a pad of fatty tissue placed over the pubic bone, which is covered with hair from puberty on. Its function is to protect the internal organs.
- Labia majora: two folds of skin covering the rest of the genital structures. The labia majora are highly sensitive to gentle playful touch, such an important role in arousal.
- Clitoris: the most important structure for sexual gratification. It's an erectile, hooded organ, corresponding to the penis in men, placed at the joining of the labia minora. The clitoris aggregates a high concentration of nerve bundles, being extremely sensitive to stimulation. It's the only organ whose sole function is to offer sexual pleasure, being essential for women to reach orgasm. A small flap of skin as protection, which is called clitoral hood, covers the clitoris.
- Labia minora: two erectile folds of skin extending from the clitoris on both sides of the vaginal opening. The labia minora also concentrate several nerve endings, being extremely important to sexual pleasure.
- There are two pairs of small and practically imperceptible organs that play an essential role in sexual intercourse: the Skene's glands and the Bartholin's glands, which are placed slightly below on each side of the vaginal opening. They are responsible for producing the natural lubrication when the woman is sexually aroused.
- The hymen is a layer of tissue around the vaginal opening that partially hides the orifice. Remember the presence or the absence of hymen doesn't indicate whether you're a virgin or not. You are a virgin until the very first time you engage in sexual intercourse and those are two completely different things. That's one of the most recurrent issues referring to adolescent sexuality.
Internal Female Genitals:
- Vagina: leading from the vaginal opening to the uterus, the vagina is a highly expandable muscular cavity which acts as an exit channel to menstrual flow and to the baby during labor. The vagina is also where the woman is penetrated during intercourse, being highly sensitive to stimulation in its anterior wall. There's a small area (about 1-2 cm) on the front wall of the vagina, halfway between the pelvic bone and the cervix (the lower part of the uterus that bulges into the vagina) which is especially sensitive to stimulation. That's the so-called G-spot.
- Uterus: a pear-shaped muscular organ where the fetus develops during pregnancy. Monthly, if a woman doesn't get pregnant, the uterus shed its lining which forms the menstrual flow.
- Fallopian tubes: is where the fertilization actually takes place, when the egg travels from the ovaries to the uterus. They are a pair of tubes extending from the upper side of the uterus toward the ovaries.
- Ovaries: located at the end of each one of the fallopian tubes, which are the most important organs to reproduction and development of the secondary sexual characteristics during puberty. Being responsible for producing and releasing a single egg per month, to be eventually fecundated, and also for producing several hormones, which act upon lubrication, sexual desire, the elasticity of the genitals during sex and during labor, and the development of secondary sexual characteristics. Those hormones produced in the ovaries are the actual cause of all the physical and emotional changes that start to take place in adolescence.