Move over “designer vagina” – it’s about time we realized there’s more to vaginal rejuvenation than just appearance.
Whatever your take on vaginal rejuvenation, labiaplasty and related procedures are on the rise and are here to stay. There’s been considerable backlash against the supposed “designer vagina”, but little has been written about the physical and emotional beneﬁts of such procedures.
Sexual health holds a massive inﬂuence over mental health and psychological well-being. Even though it’s not so openly discussed in mainstream media or even between friends, genital surgery can help alleviate pain and improve quality of life for many women.
A study has reported that majority of patients undergoing reduction of the labia minora do so for functional reasons with minimal outside influences affecting their decision for treatment.Miklos JR, and Moore RD. Labiaplasty of the labia minora: Patients’s indications for pursuing surgery.
Why shouldn’t we as women have the right to choose to have a procedure that will improve our quality of life, so that we can walk down the beach in a swimsuit without feeling embarrassed, go bike riding (or even walking) free from physical pain, or have sex without any discomfort?
Dr. George Williams, a New York gynecologist and pelvic reconstruction surgeon, agrees. “No woman should suffer embarrassment or feel inhibited in her relationship with her partner due to the appearance of her vagina or physical sexual dysfunction,” he says.
Dr. Williams believes vaginal rejuvenation has been misrepresented and, because of this, women receive little support in making a decision that is necessary to ease discomfort or improve self-conﬁdence.
“The number of women patronized by mainstream media and even by some members of the medical community when seeking help is disappointing,” he says. “The majority of my patients seeking vaginal rejuvenation are not motivated by the aesthetic, but a growing dislike of pain during intercourse or discomfort when participating in everyday activities.”
“I believe in empowering women through knowledge, choice and access to world-class care,” he continues. “Many people say ‘it’s all part of being a woman’ and ‘just put up with it’, but why should you, when you have options?”
All women are born with differently shaped genitalia, however the effects of childbirth and ageing can cause many to suffer from problems that make them self-conscious and unhappy, often affecting relationships with their sexual partners.
Why shouldn’t we as women have the right to choose to have a procedure that will improve our quality of life, so that we can walk down the beach in a swimsuit without feeling embarrassed or go bike riding without physical discomfort?Beatrice Smith, Beauty Editor
Oversized, elongated or asymmetrical labia minora – the inner vaginal lips which surround the entrance to the vagina – can cause irritation and discomfort when wearing certain clothes, and during sporting activities or sex.
Laser-assisted reduction labiaplasty can sculpt an overhanging or asymmetrical labia minora according to the patient’s wishes. “There is a wide variation in the appearance of the external genitalia, so there’s no one look that is normal,”
Dr. Williams says. “Each patient will have different motivations, concerns and expectations in seeking genital surgery,” he explains. “It is important to listen to the concerns of the individual patient, assess them with appropriate examinations and offer a series of potential solutions.”
There are a number of options available, both surgical and non-surgical, to address these problems. Taking action can help restore self-conﬁdence, boost self-image and improve quality of life.
- Miklos, J. R., & Moore, R. D. (2008). Labiaplasty of the labia minora: patients’ indications for pursuing surgery. The Journal of Sexual Medicine, 5(6), 1492-1495.
- Motakef, S., Rodriguez-Feliz, J., Chung, M. T., Ingargiola, M. J., Wong, V. W., & Patel, A. (2015). Vaginal labiaplasty: Current practices and a simplified classification system for labial protrusion. Plastic and reconstructive surgery, 135(3), 774-788.