While not as popular as breast surgeries or rhinoplasty, surgery to rejuvenate the vaginal area, including vaginoplasty and labiaplasty, has become more popular in recent years. There are many reasons why more and more women are considering plastic surgery “down there,” including an increased acceptance of plastic surgery in general and growth in the number of reality TV stars getting rejuvenation procedures.
If you’re thinking about vaginal rejuvenation, then you might feel curious about your options, but also self-conscious about actually learning more or asking questions about the surgery. Plenty of patients have questions and concerns they’re too shy or embarrassed to bring up during a consultation with a plastic surgeon.
While there’s no reason to feel embarrassed about your curiosity or about wanting to learn more about a particular procedure, here are few helpful answers to the questions women are often too shy to ask about labiaplasty or vaginoplasty.
When Can You Have Sex Again After Vaginal Surgery?
It’s important to postpone sex after any type of plastic surgery to help ensure proper healing. Hitting the brakes on any type of vaginal intercourse is a requirement after vaginal rejuvenation, particularly vaginoplasty, which focuses on the internal area.
While your plastic surgeon will let you know exactly when it’s okay to start having sex again, it’s usually recommended that you wait on any type of sexual activity for at least six weeks. That includes receptive vaginal sex and any other sexual contact in the area. Engaging in sexual activity too soon after your surgery can interfere with the healing process and might put you at an increased risk for complications and infection.
Are There Medical Reasons for Labiaplasty?
Vaginal rejuvenation procedures are commonly thought to be done for purely cosmetic or elective reasons. You might have a labiaplasty to improve the appearance of your labia minora or vaginoplasty to help your vagina feel tighter after childbirth.
While many women have vaginal surgery in response to cosmetic concerns, it is also common for patients to get vaginal rejuvenation for medical reasons. Occasionally, the size of the labia can become large enough to cause a woman to experience physical discomfort when she participates in sports or exercises. Overly large labia can also chafe and cause pain when underwear or tight clothing is worn. In some cases, the size of the labia can interfere with sex, making it uncomfortable or even painful.
For some women, the size of the labia makes it challenging to clean the genital area. This can increase a woman’s risk of infection or lead to much more frequent urinary tract or vaginal infections.
Will People Know if You’ve Had Surgery?
One question many people have about plastic surgery is if others will be able to tell that they’ve had “work done.” While older surgical techniques often led to an overdone look, particularly in the case of facial plastic surgery, it’s a different story with vaginal rejuvenation.
Since most people don’t see that area, it’ll be pretty much impossible for someone to tell that you’ve had vaginal surgery, unless you decide to reveal that information. Even intimate partners most likely won’t know that you’ve had the procedure unless you decide to share that information with them.
The incisions and work done during a vaginoplasty are made inside of the body. While the incisions created during labiaplasty are external, the anatomy of the labia and the size of the incisions usually means that the scars are well-concealed.
How Can You Manage Discomfort After Vaginal Surgery?
It’s important to give your body time to heal after vaginal rejuvenation, whether you decide to have vaginoplasty, labiaplasty, or both. Some discomfort in the genital area is to be expected in the days and weeks after your surgery.
Usually, you’ll want to take at least one week off from work to recover after the procedure. During your initial recovery, there are some things you can do to help yourself feel better. Ice packs and cold compresses can help soothe discomfort and bring down swelling. Your surgeon will also most likely prescribe pain relievers to help minimize any discomfort.
If you’re thinking about applying anything to the surgical area, such as a cream or ointment to soothe any itching or pain, it’s a good idea to double-check with your surgeon first, to reduce the chance of the product making your discomfort worse.
Along with postponing sexual activity for at least six weeks after your vaginal rejuvenation surgery, it’s also recommended that you avoid any sort of physically taxing activity during that time. To help your body heal quickly and smoothly, avoid strenuous exercise or physically challenging workouts until you get the all-clear from your surgeon.
If you’re interested in vaginal rejuvenation, don’t be shy. The more questions you ask about the surgery, the more informed you’ll be, and the better prepared you’ll be to make the best decision for you.
Dr. Paul Vitenas is a board-certified plastic surgeon in Houston, Texas with plenty of experience in performing vaginoplasty and labiaplasty. He’s happy to answer any questions you may have about either surgery. To schedule your consultation with Dr. Vitenas, call 281-484-0088 today. During the COVID-19 pandemic, Dr. Vitenas is consulting with patients virtually.