Next, you’ll have to rest your feet in the stirrups (metal U-shapes) with your legs spread. This allows the doctor the right angle to see what needs to be seen. The physician sees dozens of vulvas a day and is completely unfazed by them. During the pelvic exam, there is always a sheet over your knees so you have privacy, and if there is anyone else in the room, only the doctor can see what’s under the sheet.
The speculum is a metal or plastic instrument that looks sort of like tongs and is designed to hold the walls of the vagina apart so the doctor can look inside. Having a speculum put in can be uncomfortable, especially if you are tense. Deep, even breaths will relax your muscles.