Have you recently given birth? Do you feel a little bit odd ‘down there’? Like many women after childbirth, you might be interested in having a non-surgical vagina rejuvenation procedure.
What is non-surgical vagina rejuvenation?
Unlike the more invasive surgical procedures like labiaplasty - the reduction of the inner or outer lips of the vulva - and vaginoplasty - sewing the muscle of the vagina near the opening to make it tighter - the non-surgical versions are a lot less painful and less invasive.
“Non-surgical vagina rejuvenation has been growing in popularity over the past few years,” explains Dr Soh Lea Sar. Dr Soh is a medical doctor and director of Healthsprings group of clinics with more than 20 years of aesthetic medicine and medical wellness experience.
According to Dr Soh, these treatments are done in a clinic, take less than an hour, are comfortable and a lunchtime procedure. You can go right back to work after it has been done.
So why would you get non-surgical vagina rejuvenation?
“Women complain of hyperpigmentation as well as laxity, excess skin of the labia after pregnancy,” explains Dr Soh. “They also complain of vagina laxity and incontinence months or even years after their delivery.
Balancing the New Normal:
To solve these issues, there are different types of treatments that can be used for each concern, says Dr Soh.
“To reduce hyperpigmentation of the labia, laser rejuvenation of the skin over the labia is now being used. The same skin lasers used for rejuvenation of the face are now adjusted to treat the private areas. Patients will experience fairer skin with improved skin texture and elasticity after a few treatments. The treatment is largely painless and with minimum downtime,” Dr Soh says.
For the treatment of excess skin and laxity of the labia, surgical labioplasty was more commonly used, and according to Dr Soh, can have a painful recovery.
“With the use of a radio frequency device fitted with a customised treatment hand-piece to treat the intimate area, many women have turned to this [non-surgical] option to help them reverse the effects brought on by pregnancy,” explains Dr Soh.
“Energy from the radiofrequency shortens the collagen, increases skin elasticity and lifts the skin over the labia. It is thereby reducing the laxity and excess skin, giving a younger, plumped-up appearance. It feels like a warm massage over the treated area with no downtime or side effects after treatment. An example of this device is the FDA approved BTL protege intima.”
After giving birth, many women suffer from stress incontinence and vaginal laxity. The usual treatment starts with Kegel exercises or a vagina ring pessary if more severe, but sometimes these options are not enough to solve it. This is where women used to consider more invasive surgical procedures.
“Laser vagina rejuvenation now offers another treatment option to this group of women,” explains Dr Soh. “The laser is inserted in a glass speculum, very much like how a Pap smear is done. There is minimal discomfort or downtime. Treatment is repeated monthly for three to four months, depending on the severity of the individual’s condition.
“Post-treatment, they should avoid sexual intercourse or use of tampons for a week after laser vagina treatment. There may be an increase in vaginal discharge or mild spotting post-treatment. However, improvement can be felt after the first treatment.”
Dr Soh says that one laser option to try is the Fotona 4D G runner laser, an FDA-approved device. “It uses an erbium laser which gently heats the layers of the cells during the treatment, thereby increasing the elasticity and collagen of the vagina.”
For women suffering from these conditions, often silently due to generalised stigma about discussing the reproductive organs’ medical issues, having options for non-invasive treatments is worth knowing about.
Dr Soh Lea Sar is the founder and medical director of the Healthsprings Group of five clinics consisting of Medical Aesthetics clinics and GP clinics in Bukit Panjang, Orchard and Bidadari Estate, as well as a medical spa in Orchard Road, Singapore.
Balancing the New Normal: