The membrane covering the vaginal canal is referred to as the hymen and signifies virginity in many cultures. While penetrative sex is generally the main reason why the hymen tears, there are a number of other ways this can happen.
In some instances, the hymen may not have developed correctly. In other cases, trauma, tampons and exercise can also cause it to tear. This includes horse riding, dancing, cycling and gymnastic to name a few.
Women choose to have their hymen repaired for different reasons, including cultural, religious and social. Many women choose to repair their hymens before their wedding night, while others simply want to do so as a gift to themselves. Whatever the reason, hymenoplasty can be used to repair and reconstruct a torn hymen to restore the appearance of virginity.