We may not talk openly about it, but the way our intimate areas look has a great impact on our overall confidence. For women, one frequent area of concern is the appearance of the labia, which are the inner and outer tissues of the vagina. Women who are unsatisfied with the appearance of the labia can suffer a major negative impact on their self-esteem. At Restore SD Plastic Surgery in San Diego, CA, we believe a woman’s confidence can benefit from a restorative treatment such as a labiaplasty.
Is Labiaplasty Right for Me?
How do you know if this treatment is right for you? It’s a good question, as this is a cosmetic treatment with long-lasting results. Prospective patients considering this treatment should understand all the reasons women seek this treatment. Before you call to schedule your consultation appointment, consider each of the common motivations for labiaplasty to determine if this treatment is right for you.
Common Motivations for Labiaplasty
There are many reasons women seek this treatment. The most common motivations are centered around comfort and health, but there are other motivations that factor into the benefits of this treatment. For example, many women seek this treatment to improve their overall body confidence, particularly in the hopes of improving their intimate interactions. Other common motivations for this treatment include:
Treat Various Discomforts
Excess labial tissue can be a great cause of discomfort. This is mainly because excess tissue can create friction, chafing of the skin, or even pinching while wearing tighter clothing. Many women experience discomfort associated with labial excess during activities such as running, bike riding, and other exercises or physical activity. Women also experience discomfort wearing swimsuits, intimate clothing, and even jeans.
Less Painful Intercourse
Labial excess can also cause pain during intercourse. Painful intercourse is mainly associated with excess labia tissue causing too much friction or simply getting in the way. Excess labial tissue can also prevent nerves from being stimulated during intercourse.
Some women seek this treatment as a means to simplify hygiene. This is particularly true for athletic women or women who have pronounced labial excess that prevents complete cleansing. Excess labial tissue can create extra folds of skin on the inner and outer labia as well as the pubis mons, which can be difficult to properly clean.
Treat Medical Issues
There are also medical reasons to remove excess labial tissue. Labia that has abnormal tissue can be a health concern. Women who have frequent infections sometimes use this treatment as an interventional method to prevent new infections.
Correct Dissatisfaction With Appearance
The last common motivator for this treatment is simply being unsatisfied with the appearance of the labia. Women who feel they have abnormal or asymmetrical labial tissue may seek this treatment to correct the tissue structure for a more refined or restored appearance. This treatment can be tailored to the patient’s exact desired appearance so that each woman is completely satisfied with the look of her most intimate areas.
Any one of these common motivators is an excellent reason to seek this treatment. Every woman should feel comfortable and satisfied with the appearance of her body, including the vagina. If any of these common motivators apply to you, then you are likely a good fit for this treatment.
Frequently Asked Questions
What Causes Labial Excess?
Women who have labial excess often want to know what causes the tissue to look the way it does. The first thing women should know is that there is no “right” way for a labia to look. Labial tissue naturally comes in many shapes, sizes, and degrees of asymmetry. However, for women who are concerned about the appearance of the labia, the most common root causes of excess tissue include:
Some women are simply born with labial excess because of genetic predisposition. Genetics determine everything about us, including the amount of labial tissue we each have, along with the size, shape, and color of the tissue. Women born with labial excess generally start experiencing discomfort during puberty while the body is undergoing changes. It is common for younger women to experience minor discomfort during physical activity and wearing clothes due to labial excess.
Weight gain or weight fluctuations are another common cause of labial excess. Women who struggle to maintain their weight may experience greater labial excess when they are dieting or losing weight. This is largely due to the fact that weight gain stores small pockets of fat within the labial tissue, while weight loss eliminates that excess fat, leaving the labial tissue thinner and less elastic than before.
Childbirth is another common cause of labial excess. This pertains largely to natural childbirth, which calls for the tissues of the vagina, including the labia, to stretch to accommodate birth. However, some women begin noticing changes to the shape and tone of labia tissue in response to hormonal changes during pregnancy.
Is Labiaplasty Considered Surgery?
This treatment can be done in one of two ways. First is as an outpatient at our office, which requires the use of a local anesthetic and is usually reserved for minor corrections for labial excess. The second is a formal surgery at a hospital, which requires the use of general anesthesia and is often combined with other cosmetic procedures.
What Can I Expect During Consultation?
A consultation is your first step for this treatment. At our office, we complete comprehensive consultations to screen each patient for all aspects of treatment. We will ask about your general medical history, current medical issues, medications and supplements you are taking, any drug allergies you have, and any previous surgeries or cosmetic treatments for the vagina you may have had in the past. We will also ask about your family planning, particularly if you plan to have children or if you are currently pregnant.
What Can I Expect During Treatment?
We work closely with you to create a treatment plan to achieve your desired results, which will help inform the way we structure your overall treatment. Your treatment will require a few steps before, during, and after.
Before your treatment, we will give you a list of pre-treatment instructions to follow to prepare. These pre-treatment instructions are standard for both out-patient treatments and hospital surgeries. The pre-treatment instructions may include:
- Avoid using tobacco or alcohol products
- Drink an adequate amount of water
- Fast the night before treatment
- Do not take certain supplements or medications
- Reschedule appointment if menstruating or pregnant
You may be asked to complete certain labs or exams before your treatment. For example, we usually ask patients to complete a basic exam and pap smear with an OB/GYN to verify health before treatment. Because we may use general anesthesia or an oral sedative, please arrange for transportation on the day of your treatment.
A major component of your treatment will be administering medications for your comfort, such as topical numbing creams, oral sedatives, or general anesthesia. When you are comfortable, our skilled surgeon will use a wedge or trim technique to remove the labial excess as desired. This restoration treatment seals the repairs with dissolving sutures to lower the possibility of visible scarring. The treatment will take about 1 to 2 hours to complete.
After your treatment, we will give you a list of post-treatment instructions to follow to help you through your immediate recovery period. These post-treatment instructions are intended for both out-patient and hospital treatments. The post-treatment instructions may include:
- Do not use alcohol or tobacco for 24 hours
- Eat lightly after treatment
- Properly hydrate
- Avoid certain supplements and medications
- No strenuous physical activity, including intercourse
We will also provide you with instructions on how to care for the treatment area, including directions on how to wash and how to use cold compresses. We will likely schedule a follow-up appointment about 2 to 3 weeks after your treatment.
What Is Recovery Like?
Recovery from this treatment is simple. We ask that patients follow care instructions carefully to ensure proper healing after the treatment. We also ask that patients avoid sexual activity, particularly vaginal intercourse, for at least 4 to 6 weeks following treatment. The majority of patients are recovered from treatment within 1 to 2 weeks. After this time, most women are able to continue regular feminine hygiene and resume most normal daily activities.
When Can I See Results?
The majority of women will begin noticing results after 2 to 3 weeks, usually right around the time of the follow-up appointment. Results will include an overall improved or restored appearance of the labia as well as higher confidence in the appearance of the vagina. Women who use this treatment can enjoy more comfort and more satisfying sexual experiences.
Are Results Permanent?
The results of this treatment can be permanent. The best way to ensure your results are permanent is to follow care instructions and maintain a healthy weight after treatment. It is also important to avoid pregnancy after the treatment, as natural childbirth will undo all results of the treatment.
Can I Combine This Treatment With Others?
Absolutely. In fact, it is very common for this treatment to be combined with other cosmetic restorative treatments. For example, this treatment can be combined with laser hair removal, vaginal rejuvenation, and other energy-based cosmetic treatments like body contouring or skin tightening for the body. This treatment can also be combined with surgical procedures, including liposuction, breast lifts, butt lifts, tummy tucks, or a mommy makeover.
If you are interested in combining this treatment with other cosmetic treatments, please let us know at the time of your consultation. We will work with you to create a treatment plan that addresses all of your cosmetic concerns and allows you to reach your ideal appearance goals.
Who Are Ideal Candidates?
Most prospective patients interested in this treatment make ideal candidates. We determine qualification for this treatment based on information gained during the consultation. Ideal candidates for this treatment include patients who are non-smokers, who are not pregnant, and who complete the required OB/BYN exams. You may be an ideal candidate if you want to have:
- Greater comfort during physical activity
- Better fitting clothing
- No pain during intercourse
- Symmetrical labial tissue
- Restored vaginal appearance
- More confidence
Restore Your Feminine Confidence With Labiaplasty!
Being self-conscious about the appearance of your intimate area and living with discomfort during physical activity, including intercourse, is no way to live. Every woman deserves to feel confident, healthy, and beautiful about every aspect of her appearance. If you think a labiaplasty is right for you, contact Restore SD Plastic Surgery in San Diego, CA to schedule your consultation appointment. We look forward to helping you restore your feminine confidence!