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"What causes bumps to form around the vaginal area?"
What causes bumps to form around the vaginal area? I'm a young woman and I don't think there is ANY chance this is an STD. Assuming it isn't ingrown hairs, then what? The bumps are very small and red, raised, and just a little bit painful to the touch.
There are several main causes of the bumps you are describing. If the bumps are mostly in the pubic hair line, then there is a high likelihood that they are ingrown hairs. These show up as red painful bumps that surround a hair shaft, and they usually respond just to good skin hygiene and some topical antibiotic cream. Another cause, also most common in the hair line, is folliculitis. These are small little infections of the hair shafts, which also cause red bumps, usually with a small amount of pus at the tip (whitehead). These respond to the same treatments as ingrown hairs. If the bumps are out of the hairline and within or on the vagina or labia themselves, then the chance of a sexually transmitted infection goes up. The most likely infection would be a herpes infection. Herpes sores begin as small blisters, usually containing clear fluid, that sit on top of a red inflamed base. They are usually painful or have a burning quality to them, and when they rupture they form small ulcers that heal over. Your primary care doctor or OB / GYN doctor can determine if these sores are herpes sores quickly with a physical examination and some simple tests.
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