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"I don't agree with designer vaginas at all," said Dr Kiran Coelho to Maheep Kapoor, Seema Khan, Neelam Kothari Soni and Bhavana Pandey on Fabulous Lives of Bollywood Wives. And since then, the show's viewers have been curious about what goes down when one gets a designer vagina, a.k.a labiaplasty.
One of the women asks the expert about women losing interest in sex as they get older. The doctor responds about 'designer vaginas' becoming increasingly popular. "So many of my patients come for vaginal tightening when they feel their vaginas have become too loose," explains Dr Kiran Coelho, a gynaecologist and laparoscopic surgeon.
What Is Labiaplasty?
The labiaplasty procedure, also known as labioplasty, labia minora reduction, and labial reduction, involves the alteration of the labia minora (inner labia) and labia majora (outer labia), which are folds of skin surrounding the female pelvis .
Cosmetic genital surgery is performed on two main groups of women: those with congenital conditions such as intersex and those without underlying conditions who experience physical discomfort or wish to alter their appearance because they do not believe they fall within a 'normal range' due to their genitals .
There's an increasing trend to beautify below the belt. And it's getting popular among non-celebrities as well. The American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery says that labiaplasty has grown by 53 per cent in the U.S. from 2013 to 2018. In recent years, labiaplasty surgery has become increasingly popular in India .
What's the cCost of Labiaplasty in India?
A labiaplasty surgery can cost as little as 30000 INR and as much as 35000 INR. The average cost is 32500 INR.
Labiaplasty Vs Vaginoplasty
A labiaplasty differs from a vaginoplasty, which involves surgical procedures to tighten the vaginal area. It may be performed in certain circumstances for patients with pelvic-floor issues, such as incontinence, following multiple childbirths. However, it is also often performed to increase vaginal tightness for sexual pleasure .
Besides labiaplasty, non-surgical vaginal rejuvenation treatments also fall into the "designer vagina" trend. Laser treatments stimulate the mucosa and the inner lining of the vagina, and LED light treatments are supposed to encourage the vagina to grow more tissue. Vaginal tightness and dryness can't be increased or reduced using most of these treatments because they're not FDA-approved or scientifically proven.
What Are The Risks Of Labiaplasty?
There are several risks associated with vaginal cosmetic surgery :
- A permanent change in sensation
- Pain that persists
When considering vaginal surgery, discussing your feelings and concerns about your genitals, expectations for surgery, and non-surgical options with your doctor is important.
For example, Kegel-like exercises can tone weak and loose vaginal muscles and increase sexual arousal. At the same time, counselling can assist in addressing sexual self-esteem and confidence issues .
Women with active gynaecological disease, such as an infection or a malignancy, are usually not a good candidate for lip reduction surgery; women who smoke tobacco and don't want to quit, either temporarily or permanently, to heal wounds; women who have unrealistic aesthetic goals aren't a good candidate either.
The latter should be counselled. Experts stress that labiaplasty should not be performed during menstruation to prevent hormonal effects and infection.
The 'Aesthetic Need' To Have The 'Perfect' Down Under
In my opinion, getting a labiaplasty done for beautification or aesthetic purposes is nothing but a reflection of society's misconstructed ideas of female beauty. In real life, there's no "normal" vulva. The same goes for vaginas and vulvas - they all have the same parts, but each one looks a little different. There are many different kinds of labia, including puffy labia, dangly labia, and barely-there labia .
Vaginal openings can be big or small, and the clitoris may stick out or be hidden under the clitoral hood. There's nothing unusual about your vulva being asymmetrical (when one side looks different from the other). Vulvas have all kinds of skin colours, from dark brown to purple to tan to light pink, as well as different kinds of pubic hair and textures.
The procedure and its rising prevalence have raised concerns, and some experts believe that pornography images on the Internet might cause women to feel dissatisfied with their bodies. The National Health Service says some women bring adverts or pornographic images to show off their desired genital appearance, even though there's no evidence to back that up .
Your body is yours to own - own it proudly, ladies!
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