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tedX screengrab

Two health professionals have disproved a long-standing belief about virgins, and they want everyone to take note.

Speakingat TEDx Oslo, authors of a popular book about the vagina, The Wonder from Down Under Nina Brochmann & Ellen Støkken Dahl present two myths about the hymen, and tackled both.

Myth one: The hymen breaks and bleeds the first time a woman has vaginal sex

The hymen is a rim of tissue at the outer opening of the vagina. And usually, it has a doughnut, or a half moon shape, with a large central hole. But this varies a lot and sometimes hymens have fringes, several holes or it can consist of lobes.

In other words, hymens naturally vary a lot in looks. That’s what makes it so hard to do virgin checks.

If you have an elastic hymen, you will simply never bleed from sex: it doesn’t matter if you’re a virgin or not. It is an anatomical impossibility. And that is the case for half [of f women].

Some virgins bleed, some simply don’t.

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Myth Two. The hymen is lost forever after the first time a woman has sex

The hymen is like a scrunchie in function and looks.

In fact you can stretch the hymen. For many women the hymen is elastic enough to handle a vaginal intercourse without sustaining any damage.

For other women the hymen will tear a bit to make room for the penis. But that won’t make it disappear. 

They also cite a study conducted by a doctor who examined the hymens of 36 pregnant teenagers: only two of them showed clear signs of penetration.

So unless you believe, in 34 cases of virgin births, we must all agree that also our second myth has taken a vital blow.

Many parts of the world conduct intrusive 'virgin' tests on women and young girls before marriage, and several myths exist about 'losing' ones virginity by doing everyday activities like riding a bike.

Their findings are an important contribution in dispelling myths surrounding virginity and attempts to control female sexuality with notions of 'purity'.

You can watch the entire TedX video, below:

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