Vaginal pimples have multiple causes. Most of them are benign, have few symptoms, and disappear spontaneously.
Vaginal pimples are more common than you might think and have multiple causes. These bumps can be painful or uncomfortable in some cases, but are rarely serious.
It isn’t always possible to pinpoint the cause of vaginal pimples, or those surrounding the female genital area. However, the most common causes are contact dermatitis, folliculitis, and inflammation of the Bartholin’s and Skene’s glands (which are responsible for lubricating the vaginal canal).
If symptoms such as pain, itching, or enlargement of the pimples appear, or if they don’t disappear spontaneously within two weeks, you should consult a gynecologist to determine the medical treatment.
Causes of vaginal pimples
The causes of vaginal pimples are varied – from allergic reactions, to shaving, to sexually transmitted infections. Let’s look at some examples.
Contact dermatitis causes bumps or vaginal pimples due to an allergic reaction to something that has come in contact with the skin. Common irritants can be douches, lotions or soaps with fragrances, sanitary napkins, spermicides, condoms, lubricants, laundry detergent, or bubble baths.
Perspiration, semen, and urine are also causes that need to be considered. In addition to the presence of bumps or pimples in the vaginal area, there may be burning, itching and erythema.
Folliculitis is caused by the inflammation and infection of the hair follicle. These vaginal pimples can come as a result of shaving or waxing, as well as from ingrown hairs or perspiration. Tight-fitting underwear is another cause.
In this case, as the hair begins to grow in the hair follicle, it coils into the skin or grows inward (ingrown hairs). A bump with a white-yellowish center is generated by the accumulation of pus, with redness around it.
It produces pain, itching, and a feeling of discomfort. It’s common to see them in the labia majora of the vagina or in the groin.
Its treatment consists of warm compresses to reduce inflammation and antibiotic creams. If it doesn’t improve in a couple of days, you’ll need to go to see the gynecologist. If not, it could increase in volume and cause an abscess in the area.
Even without an associated infection, ingrown hairs can lead to a lump or pimple in the vagina that can turn red and become painful. The inflammation usually subsides with local heat and natural healing in a few days.
If underwear is very tight, it’s possible to promote inflammation of the hair follicles.
Inflammation of the glands of the vulva
Bartholin’s glands and Skene’s glands are responsible for keeping the vaginal canal and vulva lubricated and with less bacteria. As a result of the presence of bacteria or poor personal hygiene, there may be a blockage of the excretory duct, generating a lump.
These pimples are usually painless and are felt by the woman while carrying out personal hygiene, or during sex. They disappear spontaneously in a few days.
If they increase in size, or there’s pain or the presence of pus, a specialist should be consulted. Large pimples may require manual drainage with a scalpel.
When many pimples are present in the vagina and on the labia majora or labia minora, accompanied by itching, burning, and redness of the skin, then a fungal infection should be suspected.
Candida albicans is the most common cause of this type of infection. It’s associated with the use of aggressive and irritating intimate hygiene products, obesity, diabetes, hormonal alterations, antibiotic use, and pregnancy.
In addition, it can manifest itself with alterations in the vaginal discharge (producing a white discharge, like sour milk). You can also feel discomfort when urinating and having sex. Treatment is with topical antifungals.
Varicose veins on the vulva
Varicose veins in this area are very rare, and are associated with causes of increased intra-abdominal pressure, such as aging, pregnancy, and childbirth. They’re bluish nodules that aren’t usually painful, but are associated with tingling and itching.
Genital herpes is a sexually transmitted infection and causes lesions that can be categorized as vaginal pimples. They’re small blisters filled with clear fluid that feel like bumps, itching and pain in the genital region.
It’s important to know that these lesions disappear and reappear when the immune system is weak. They always require assessment by a medical specialist. When the symptoms are very intense, antiviral drugs should be prescribed.
Produced by the human papillomavirus, these warts are transmitted by unprotected sexual contact. In addition to creating small pimples in the vagina, they can coalesce into a cauliflower-like lesion.
Sexual contact should be avoided when the lesions are active, as they’re contagious. They can be treated with cryotherapy, laser, electrocautery, microsurgery, or acid application to remove the lesions.
This viral infection can cause pimples anywhere on the body. It manifests as bumps called molluscum. They’re small, raised, flesh-colored or white, with a pearly appearance and a dimple in the center.
They subside spontaneously, although they can be treated topically or orally. Suspicion requires assessment by a gynecologist or dermatologist. They take 6 to 12 months to disappear.
Hidradenitis suppurativa is a chronic disease of the sweat glands. It’s characterized by recurrent pimples that contain pus and don’t heal easily.
Can vaginal pimples be removed?
Attempting to remove vaginal pimples can lead to more pain and irritation. There’s a risk of causing an added infection or spreading an existing infection. This is why it’s best to wait until they improve spontaneously or seek medical treatment.
In most cases, vaginal pimples disappear in 1 to 2 weeks. If they don’t, the approach depends on the cause and the symptoms.
Most vaginal pimples disappear spontaneously. If they don’t, you should consult a specialist.
Recommendations to avoid vaginal pimples
In general, the recommendations are to improve intimate hygiene, avoid contact with irritants or allergens, and schedule regular medical check-ups. It’s preferable to avoid tight intimate clothing and use cotton.
As for bathing, avoid very hot water. Don’t use bubbles or perfumed soaps.
Dry shaving should be avoided. The use of shaving foam is recommended. Also, shave in the same direction of the hair growth, and then moisturize the area.
Vaginal pimples can be prevented. But if they do appear, don’t despair, as it’s hardly ever serious. However, do get a check-up to clear up any doubts.
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