Having written about this subject back in October of 2007. I am actually not surprised at the rise in this rejuvenation surgery since my last research. Vaginal rejuvenation is picking up momentum like most procedures do in time. However, I feel it may have an undeserved stigma due to its genital proximity. Yet this does not silence the sheer numbers of those discontent with their private parts. To some it may seem to be growing at an alarming rate, due to what I am almost certain is 1 part media influence, and 1 part “because I can.” While you won’t find your average beauty rag responsible for coercing thousands of women into trimming their labia, the effects of erotic media on what is considered “normal” and “desirable” (which are rarely one and the same) is undeniable. Let’s revisit the psychology and physiology of what may trigger us to go to such lengths…
Let’s look at Physiology first. Genetically, some women simply have more prominent (ergo longer) labia minora, yes, the inner lips at the vestibule of the vagina. Others may tend to notice elongation with aging, child birth, the effects of sexual intercourse, and general skin elasticity issues. It is what it is. The elongation of the labia minora can interfere with sexual relations causing pain and discomfort. Sexual intercourse may not occur as frequently as both partners make like due to the discomfort associated with it.
Psychologically, we can be affected more than we know–even unconsciously. Interestingly I would have never been self conscious had I not heard the immature comments in general about ‘meat curtains’. That in itself is disgusting to even utter, not that I have ever heard it personally directed towards me. I am referring to the comments in general you hear in day to day life, on cable, the Internet, and rude males who I don’t even know why I graced them with my presence. Skydiving males! hmmph! Anyway, if there are comments like this out there, then that means that there is a group who is being judgmental, which means there is a preferred appearance of the labia. Unfortunately that trickles down into wondering about your own private parts. Which in turn brings upon the exponential growth of labiaplasty (or labioplasty) and vaginal rejuvenation procedures. It is a vicious cycle from which we seemingly cannot escape.
There have not been too many surgical advances since last year (if at all). Obviously such a short time cannot possibly allow a procedure to evolve. Hence there are complications which we must consider before undergoing such procedures. Although for the most part, labia shortening is generally a cut and dry procedure–no pun intended.
So, if you’re thinking about it, what is the criteria? Ideal candidates are those who are in good health, have no existing health issues which may interrupt healing, those who are psychologically and emotionally balanced and have realistic expectations. Just know the risks and realize they don’t just happen to everyone else. Are you willing to take that risk?
At your consultation, you will receive an examination, hopefully see before and after photos of true patients of your doctor, not just stock photos or digitally enhanced photos. He, or she, should discuss the risks with you, the surgical procedure in detail, and the recovery period. Generally, what to expect. Of course you should also talk about fees, which typically run anywhere from $3,500. to about $6,000. Be sure to determine what your total is as some surgeons have their anesthesiologists and surgical centers bill you separately. Be sure before you commit.
The recovery can be somewhat of a long haul. Remember that the area needs to stay clean however, bathing in standing water is often instructed against for about a week. Discomfort can persist for weeks, and obviously there will be discomfort upon sitting, so this can be very inconvenient if you have a desk job. Sitting for long periods can decrease circulation so take this into account, Circulation is very important during the healing period. Sexual intercourse is, of course, something that is going to have to be put off for a while. Please do not risk your final outcome and health by trying out your new parts too early. Adhere to your surgeon’s instructions.
Just be sure to have this surgery for yourself, no one else. We all don’t have to be paper dolls with cookie cutter lines. We are individuals and while I understand the desire to feel better about oneself and choose to tweak what we do have–I’d be a hypocrite if I did not. Consider the reasoning behind your decision. Are you comparing yourself to magazines and before and after photos of the post-op patients, or do you have a physical discomfort complaint,. Whatever the reason, if it is yours, it is yours. You have every right to make that choice. Just be sure it is a healthy choice and a choice where there is more reward and risk.