WARNING: The Embarrassing Bodies website contains images of an explicit medical nature and nudity in a medical context.

Embarrassing Bodies Down Under, 12:30am Tuesday 26th May 2015 on Channel 4. Catch up for free on 4oD »

Conditions

Enlarged Labia

Enlarged Labia

Many women are born with larger or more noticeably asymmetric labia, just like other parts of the body come in different shapes and sizes. These lips of skin surround the vulval opening, and conditions such as Congenital Adrenal Hyperplasia, stretching in childbirth or irritation can cause enlargement. For some it makes no difference to their lives, but for others it undermines confidence, especially when it comes to relations in the bedroom. Labiaplasty is the surgical procedure used to reduce the inner labia, but this is seen as cosmetic and will not usually be available on the NHS. If you do have any concerns, it might be worthwhile to go and seek advice from your doctor.

Comments and Questions

The EB doctors have been looking at your comments and have answered some of the common questions below. Remember that it is always best to check with a health professional if you have any concerns about your health.

You can share your experiences and thoughts with other Embarrassing Bodies site-users below. Comments & Questions are reviewed by moderators, but if you see anything on the site that worries you, please report it and one of our moderators will look at it as soon as possible.
Please note: Unfortunately Channel 4 cannot respond to individual inquiries. If you have any concerns, you can check out NHS Choices, but ultimately it is always best to check with a health professional.

I've had long, large, thinned out labia since before I was ten. I was violently sexually abused multiple times when I was younger and when I see myself naked, I am disgusted by my body and genitalia and see my labia as scars from this. I have even contemplated cutting them off. Is there a surgery I would be able to take when I am old enough to remove or reduce my labia? They look like a duck's beak...





This will be published. Surnames, nicknames or usernames are not allowed


Your email address will be kept confidential and will NOT be published – it is only being collected here in case Channel 4 need to contact you in relation to your answer.


Please don't swear or be rude in your answers, as they will not be added to the site. Please do not use your full name when posting answers. If in doubt, refer to the community guidelines

Questions submitted to the site will be answered by other site users, not by medical professionals, so if you have a medical concern, please book an appointment with your GP.

By posting on this website you are agreeing to abide by our community guidelines

I am so sorry for both your past abuse, and for how you're feeling now. You didn't deserve to go through that, and you don't deserve to feel the way you do either! People who have experienced significant trauma, particularly at a young age like you have, often do one of two things: they externalize the pain, and lash out at others, or they internalize the pain, and grow to hate themselves and/or their bodies. It sounds like you fall into the latter category, but rest assured it's very normal for people to feel that way after being sexually abused, and you can gradually heal yourself over time! It's usually best to work through these issues with a professional, who can guide you on your way to feeling better. Self-help books on recovering from sexual abuse might also be an option if you're interested (I wish I could recommend one, but alas, I don't know much about them). Part of the recovery process will involve analyzing your thoughts about your body, and seeing if they are in fact true or not. We often see thoughts in our minds as facts, but they're not. They can be wrong, and we have the power to change them! Some of the thoughts that you have that I believe are not true are that your labia are scars from your abuse, and that they look like a duck's beak. I don't think either of those things are true! I'm pretty sure that your labia would look the way they do regardless of what has happened in your past, and I really don't think that anyone else is going to think they look like a duck's beak. Labia come in all shapes and sizes, but they always look like labia. I wish you all the best in the future, and please remember to be patient and kind to yourself while you work through your experiences and your pain.

I am 14 and my labia gets red, swollen and very painful after horse riding or riding a bike. It will be very red and painful to touch and to walk as the two sides rub together. It can stay like this for days and it's so painful while I am riding. I haven't told anyone about it but I don't know if there's actually something wrong please help!





This will be published. Surnames, nicknames or usernames are not allowed


Your email address will be kept confidential and will NOT be published – it is only being collected here in case Channel 4 need to contact you in relation to your comment.


Please don’t swear or be rude in your comments, as they will not be added to the site. Please do not use your full name when posting comments. If in doubt, refer to the community guidelines

By posting on this website you are agreeing to abide by our community guidelines

If you're shaving the area, I'm wondering if this could be caused by the labia rubbing against the stubble? Pubic hair does serve a purpose - it acts as a "dry lubricant" to prevent chafing around the genitals like you're experiencing. If you think it might help, stop shaving for a few weeks, and see if that fixes the problem.

I'm 19 and have long labia I've had it since I was like 13 I think ! I hate it I don't no what to do I hate it and I am scared to have sex 😩





This will be published. Surnames, nicknames or usernames are not allowed


Your email address will be kept confidential and will NOT be published – it is only being collected here in case Channel 4 need to contact you in relation to your comment.


Please don’t swear or be rude in your comments, as they will not be added to the site. Please do not use your full name when posting comments. If in doubt, refer to the community guidelines

By posting on this website you are agreeing to abide by our community guidelines

Hey well I am 13 and I have an enlarged labia and I am afraid that no ine will love too. Have not told anyone and right now I am getting a vaginal procedure done to check for dieses and I am scared that they will look at me with disgust and I've been trying to find something that will make me feel better.

I'm 15 and I have one inner lip that protrudes out when I stand and one that is inside when I stand. Both are really puffy. When I stretch them, they flaten for a moment but puff right back up on me. Its that normal?





This will be published. Surnames, nicknames or usernames are not allowed


Your email address will be kept confidential and will NOT be published – it is only being collected here in case Channel 4 need to contact you in relation to your comment.


Please don’t swear or be rude in your comments, as they will not be added to the site. Please do not use your full name when posting comments. If in doubt, refer to the community guidelines

By posting on this website you are agreeing to abide by our community guidelines

That all sounds normal to me. The labia are incredibly stretchy, and they always return to their natural state. Childbirth pretty much necessitates that all parts of the vulva be stretchy.

I never had a child...

I didn't mean to suggest that you had a child, sorry if that wasn't clear! I meant that the vulva needs to be stretchy so that women are able to have children at some point.

Everyone I am 22 and my labia do stick out when I stand up - one is bigger than the other and they are longer than I would have said is classed as "normal" BUT there is no such thing as normal!! Vulvas are ALL different, they can even bring pleasure in the bedroom in a variety of ways. If you feel close enough to another person to engage in sex of any kind with them they should be respectful and loving towards your body. If they make any comments on your vulva or any other part of you that makes you feel any type of negative emotion then ask yourself if you really want to be physically giving yourself to them. Surgery comes along with so many risks - it can kill you. The operation itself can leave scar tissue and loss of feeling. There is no way I want to loose any feeling down there!! I've had 7 sexual partners who have been both men and women and I've had one of them comment on my lips and I said "Yeah it's the way I am" Men have hairy smelly balls! Or saggy foreskins or a penis that leans to one side - they're not made to feel insecure about their genitals. Your vulva is just that it is YOURS! YOU are an individual and there is no certain way your vulva should look! Surgery is so risky, expensive and not necessary. Unless there is pain involved. Any young girls on here feeling insecure do not look at porn those girls on there have naturally small vaginal lips and have their skin bleached - they BLEACH their vaginal skin! OUCH. Or they have an operation to make themselves look a certain way - they same way some of them have boob jobs. They are not normal people - they're porn stars. Find porn which is realistic if you like to watch it :) I hope I have helped at least one person!





This will be published. Surnames, nicknames or usernames are not allowed


Your email address will be kept confidential and will NOT be published – it is only being collected here in case Channel 4 need to contact you in relation to your comment.


Please don’t swear or be rude in your comments, as they will not be added to the site. Please do not use your full name when posting comments. If in doubt, refer to the community guidelines

By posting on this website you are agreeing to abide by our community guidelines

Thank you!!!! Even though i am a very confident, secure person ,sometimes one needs to hear it from another person. Smart and beautiful words. Thank you again.

Guys I am 19 and I have had this issue since I was young. I remember taking a bath with one of my best friends (we were like 5) and she asked what it was hanging down! And I was 5 I didn't know what it was either! But throughout the years..some things have been painful but I just kind of adjusted them to make myself comfortable. People like to make fun of girls with them..I've heard "meat curtains" before..I've also had a guy friend say "what's up with your swimsuit you got a little penis in there?" In front of all my friends!!! I looked down and was like what?! And casually played it off as a friend slapped him in the arm.. I have had a few boyfriends...only a few that I've been sexually active with...and they never cared! I've been dating my boyfriend for 3 years now and he loves them. I've always been embarrassed about them and still am...only because I don't want everyone knowing I have them..but girls. You are so normal. If your man really does want to be with you...he won't care. Me and my boyfriend even make jokes about them. Don't make them a bigger deal then they are!





This will be published. Surnames, nicknames or usernames are not allowed


Your email address will be kept confidential and will NOT be published – it is only being collected here in case Channel 4 need to contact you in relation to your comment.


Please don’t swear or be rude in your comments, as they will not be added to the site. Please do not use your full name when posting comments. If in doubt, refer to the community guidelines

By posting on this website you are agreeing to abide by our community guidelines

I'm also 19 and have had this issue since I was young. I think at a young age its hard to get over what people may think or say, especially guys, I still find it extremely hard and am terrified about being with a guy because of how he might react. This is something Im struggling with and will have to deal with, but I think the important thing to remember is we are all humans, not freaks or monsters. All of us are individuals and have to learn to accept ourselves. We are clearly not the only ones who have this problem, as this forum has already proven. Accept yourself as your are and I think you'll find it easier this way for a guy to accept you. I know having that confidence is easier said than done, believe me I know, but we have to stop doubting our beauty as women.

I'm 17 years old, going on 18. Currently not in a relationship but was sexually active until a boy mentioned that my Labia hangs down. Since then I am so insecure and cannot go back to how things used to be with anyone. I'm considering looking at surgery options but worried about telling my mum about my problem. Please help or give some advice on what to do





This will be published. Surnames, nicknames or usernames are not allowed


Your email address will be kept confidential and will NOT be published – it is only being collected here in case Channel 4 need to contact you in relation to your comment.


Please don’t swear or be rude in your comments, as they will not be added to the site. Please do not use your full name when posting comments. If in doubt, refer to the community guidelines

By posting on this website you are agreeing to abide by our community guidelines

I am a 18 year old girl, me and my boyfriend regularly have sex (protected), but i have a enlarged labia, although he isn't bothered it makes me feel really self conscious and feel like I'm a freak. Please help?!





This will be published. Surnames, nicknames or usernames are not allowed


Your email address will be kept confidential and will NOT be published – it is only being collected here in case Channel 4 need to contact you in relation to your comment.


Please don’t swear or be rude in your comments, as they will not be added to the site. Please do not use your full name when posting comments. If in doubt, refer to the community guidelines

By posting on this website you are agreeing to abide by our community guidelines

Hell no ! You're certainly no freak. We're all so very different. I'm a nurse and see all different shapes and sizes, both men and women. Try not to worry about this, you are perfectly normal

I'm 13 and have started my period 3 months ago and When I did I noticed my labia felt uncomfortable and embarrassed . I need to see a doctor but I haven't even confronted my mum about the problem . Do you think I should because it is very large and heavy on my underwear . I want it removed but I would feel embarrassed going to my doctor especially because he is a male x





This will be published. Surnames, nicknames or usernames are not allowed


Your email address will be kept confidential and will NOT be published – it is only being collected here in case Channel 4 need to contact you in relation to your comment.


Please don’t swear or be rude in your comments, as they will not be added to the site. Please do not use your full name when posting comments. If in doubt, refer to the community guidelines

By posting on this website you are agreeing to abide by our community guidelines

Hi, I am 16 now and I saw my doctor about my labia when I was 13 but she said I couldn't have the surgery. Since then, my other labia has become enlarged so both of them hang low. Should I go back to see the doctor because it is uncomfortable and am I more likely to get the surgery now? Please help





This will be published. Surnames, nicknames or usernames are not allowed


Your email address will be kept confidential and will NOT be published – it is only being collected here in case Channel 4 need to contact you in relation to your comment.


Please don’t swear or be rude in your comments, as they will not be added to the site. Please do not use your full name when posting comments. If in doubt, refer to the community guidelines

By posting on this website you are agreeing to abide by our community guidelines





This will be published. Surnames, nicknames or usernames are not allowed


Your email address will be kept confidential and will NOT be published – it is only being collected here in case Channel 4 need to contact you in relation to your comment.



Please don’t swear or be rude in your comments, as they will not be added to the site. Please do not use your full name when posting comments. If in doubt, refer to the community guidelines

By posting on this website you are agreeing to abide by our community guidelines

It looks like no one else has asked this question, so please fill in the rest of your details below.





This will be published. Surnames, nicknames or usernames are not allowed


Your email address will be kept confidential and will NOT be published – it is only being collected here in case Channel 4 need to contact you in relation to your answer.



Please don't swear or be rude in your questions, as they will not be added to the site. Please do not use your full name when posting questions. If in doubt, refer to the community guidelines

Questions submitted to the site will be answered by other site users, not by medical professionals, so if you have a medical concern, please book an appointment with your GP.

By posting on this website you are agreeing to abide by our community guidelines


Important Notice

The information provided on this website (including any NHS Choices medical information) is for use as information or for educational purposes only and is not a substitute for professional medical care by a qualified doctor or other qualified healthcare professional. We do not warrant that any information included within this site will meet your health or medical requirements. This Embarrassing Bodies site does not provide any medical or diagnostic services so you should always check with a health professional if you have any concerns about your health.


If you want to embed our videos in your site, read our embedding T&Cs here


More Information

  1. Consultation: Enlarged Labia

    In Videos - A woman comes to see Dr McKenna about her enlarged labia.

  2. We're Coming to Get You!

    In Episodes - The Docs are back, and this time they're coming to get you!

  3. Consultation: Acne Keloidalis

    In Videos - A patient receives treatment for the disfiguring condition Acne Kel…

  4. Consultation: Acne Scarring

    In Videos - A patient comes to see Dr Harper about treatment for the scarring c…

  5. Consultation: Ichthyosis

    In Videos - Dr Harper treats a women for the skin condition Ichthyosis, with am…

  6. Consultation: Breast Reconstruction

    In Videos - Dr Jessen treats a breasts cancer survivor who wants to receive an…

  7. Consultation: Breast Realignment

    In Videos - Dr McKenna examines a patient who has reached the end of her tether…

  8. Consultation: Vaginal Prolapse

    In Videos - Dr Harper examines a woman who has suffered a prolapsed vagina afte…

  9. Consultation: Breast Reduction

    In Videos - A patient comes to see Dr Harper with enormous 36JJ Breasts that ar…

  10. Consultation: Urinary Incontinence

    In Videos - Dr Jessen meets a woman whose problem bladder is ruling her life, b…

  11. Consultation: Painful Penis

    In Videos - Dr Jessen treats a patient whose pleasures in life have been severe…

  12. Consultation: Gynaecomastia

    In Videos - Dr Jessen treats a man who's rapid weight loss has left him with fo…

  13. Consultation: Prostate Cancer

    In Videos - Dr Jessen treats a patient whose Prostate Cancer has worsened in re…

  14. Dr Pixie McKenna

    In Videos - Find out more about Dr Pixie McKenna

  15. Dr Priya Manickavasagar

    Doctor Info - Find out more about Dr Priya.


Help Beat Cancer

Download our free mobile game to help Reverse The Odds in the fight against cancer.

Available on App Store, Google Play and Amazon App Store >