Labiaplasty Recovery: What to Expect

Aug 04, 2023

Labiaplasty Recovery: What to Expect

Everyone’s body is unique, but some women feel physically or emotionally uncomfortable with age-related changes in their most intimate areas. Discover the benefits labiaplasty offers and the recovery period you can anticipate after surgery. 

Labiaplasty surgery empowers many women to feel more comfortable in their aging bodies. The labia minora and labia majora, or the lips of your vulva surrounding the vaginal opening, frequently descend or grow larger over time. Yours may change shape at a faster rate because of:

  • Hormone changes approaching menopause
  • Pregnancy and childbirth
  • Weight fluctuations
  • Genetics

Some women turn to labiaplasty for cosmetic reasons if they don’t like the changes in their vulvar appearance while others pursue labiaplasty for medical reasons due to chafing during exercise or sex. Larger labia can also harbor more bacteria, leading to more frequent urinary tract infections in some aging women. 

In Macon and Warner Robins, Georgia, Women’s Health Institute is a top-tier provider of plastic surgeries, including labiaplasty. Cosmetic surgeon Nnaemeka Umerah, MD, and aesthetic specialist Anayo Umerah, MD, collaborate to produce exceptional results for every patient in need of a change while preserving the labias’ natural appearance. 

If you’re gearing up for a labiaplasty, review this guide to prepare yourself for the recovery process. 

Don’t rush your return to everyday life

You can return to work within a week of your labiaplasty surgery, but the recovery process is far from over at this time. Light physical activity is also allowed, but you should refrain from vigorous exercise for approximately four weeks. During this time, the swelling, soreness, and discoloration gradually subside. 

Our team at Women’s Health Institute encourages you to avoid swimming for at least a month (sitz baths are OK) and avoid genital-focused sexual activity for around six weeks. Stop what you’re doing immediately if you experience burning or bleeding while introducing specific activities back into your routine. 

Managing sensations and complications

We won’t sugar coat it: Recovery after labiaplasty isn’t always comfortable. You can anticipate swelling, postoperative pain or discomfort, soreness, and discoloration, which are all parts of the normal healing process. There is usually little or no scarring following labiaplasty surgery. 

You can manage initial discomfort and swelling with:

  • Over-the-counter medications
  • Cold compress or ice pack
  • Hip elevation while lying down (simply place a pillow under your hips)
  • Plenty of water and healthy foods
  • Physician-approved ointments

You’ll also see some bleeding for up to a week, which you can manage using sanitary pads. 

Our team encourages you to phone right away if you experience signs of infections and other complications including excessive swelling, pus, clumps of blood, a fever, or tearing. 

Keeping sanitary

Sanitation is critical as your labiaplasty heals. You’ll need to follow special instructions for washing the area and keeping bacteria away. Use lukewarm water only, no soap, and avoid vigorously rubbing or scrubbing your labia. 

After using the restroom, wipe or dab the area gently to dry it. Our team can share additional recommendations to ensure you’ll stay clean and infection-free. 

Your final result

Although you’ll be back to most activities within six weeks of your labiaplasty, it can take up to 4-6 months for all of the swelling to go down. At that point, you’ll be able to enjoy the final result of your labiaplasty minus any discoloration and inflammation associated with healing. 

If you’re interested in learning more about labiaplasty to decide if it’s a good fit for you, call Women’s Health Institute or book a one-on-one consultation online at the nearest office today.