What exactly is an aesthetic gynae?

South Africa’s first certified Aesthetic Gynaecologist, Dr Natalia Novikova, recently opened her first practice at the Cape Town Mediclinic. When I got the invite to sit down with Dr Novikova I was all kinds of curious. What exactly is an aesthetic gynae? Do women really tweak their hoohas? I mean, this is well beyond the trimming the bushes after all.

I have always been pretty happy with the situation down there, but I asked my girlfriends whether any of them would consider doing it and I got plenty of enthusiastic interest. So I went to do some (ahem) deeper investigation.

The first thing I realised during the talk was that this field goes so much further than getting a ‘designer vagina’. Dr Novikova’s presentation was filled with testimonials of women who were incredibly uncomfortable with their bodies – physically unable to wear a swimsuit or unable to experience pleasure during sex. These are not just women who’ve gone through natural childbirth – although that is a popular market – but women as young as 22 years.

I guess that while we girls share a lot of secrets, we’re pretty tight lipped about the situation down there.

Well don’t worry, I asked the uncomfortable questions for you.

When would you consider seeing an aesthetic gynae?

You are physically uncomfortable. It’s too floppy or big or odd.

You can’t control your bladder

You struggle to feel pleasure during sex, it’s painful, or you can’t orgasm

You really just feel like neatening up down there after popping out your babies

What’s on the menu?

Laser

Vaginal laser rejuvination involves treating vaginal laxity, dryness, infections or issues with urination. This painless, bloodless procedure helps to enhance your vaginal muscle tone, strength and control. You will need a series of 3 treatments, spaced 4-6 weeks apart, and then go back for a yearly touch-up.

O-Shot and G-Shot

Okay girls, this is where you sit up and listen. The O in O-shot stands for orgasm. They’ll inject PRP (Platelet-rich plasma) into your G-Spot which enhances your orgasms.

But it’s not just for that. This procedure can also help women who struggle to hold in urine when they sneeze, cough, run or jump.

The G-Shot is also an injection into the G-Spot to enhance arousal and orgasms, this time using Hyaluronic Acid instead of PRP.

PRP or Hyaluronic Acid can also be injected into the vaginal wall to help with dryness or tighten the vagina.

Botox

Vaginismus is a condition where women experience pain during intercourse because the muscles contract involuntarily. According to Dr Novikova this is often seen in women who’ve experienced some sort of sexual trauma or who have a psychological block when it comes to sex. A botox injection relaxes the vaginal muscle, so women are able to have intercourse.

Labiaplasty and vaginoplasty

Labiaplasty surgically corrects the vaginal lips. This is particularly popular among women who’ve gone through natural childbirth but Dr Novikova has also seen younger women who come to her complaining about awkward, elongated shapes that make it hard to wear tight clothing or bathing suits.

Vaginaplasty is a procedure to tighten the vaginal canal. This is again popular among women who have given birth, or women who want more friction during sex. It can either be done through surgery or through laser treatments.

Fillers

Fillers can be used to increase the size of the labia majora (the bigger lips). According to Dr Novikova, as women age, lose weight, or give birth, these lips can become lax and floppy. Fillers can help to firm and tone the area.

Bleaching

Some women develop hyperpigmentation during pregnancy or as they age. This is treated with genital bleaching where they can lighten darkened skin in the labia majora, internal thighs or perianal area.

How long before you can take it for a spin?

How long should you wait before you can take your new and improved vagina for a test drive? According to Dr Novikova you will have to wait about 3 days after laser. Labiaplasty takes about a week to heal and you’ll have to wait around 6 weeks before having sex. Vaginoplasty takes even longer to heal.

How soon after childbirth can you have it done?

You can have laser any time after childbirth but it is wise to wait until your hormones have leveled and see how that influences your body.

Stick to the pros

Like anything, it is best to let the professionals handle this type of thing. Dr Novikova urges that you head to a skilled practitioner who can assess your concerns and recommend the best procedure.

You can find more information about Dr Novikova and her practice at drnovikova.co.za

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