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Embarrassing Bodies, 11:10pm Monday 21st April 2014 on More 4. Catch up for free on 4oD »

Video

Dr Pixie:
The subject of enlarged labia has really got you talking. A lot of you wondered, is it normal to have one side bigger than the other? Absolutely! It’s totally fine, don’t worry about it. We are all different.

Some of you wondered if large labia can affect health and cleanliness and ‘do they give rise to more infections’. Because the cells on the inside of the labia are actually mucus-producing, so they produce secretions, what happens is they actually make the labia stick together. And that can make people feel like they’re unclean or can sometimes give rise to maybe a slight smell. But in no way do they cause infections or any medical problems.

A lot of you have asked, will your labia get larger as you get older? The chances are, they will, and a lot of times this is related to the number of natural births you have.

A lot of you wondered, what do you actually do to deal with enlarged labia? Well, there is a procedure called labiaplasty—which again is something that’s got you all talking and passing comments about—which can be done through a cosmetic surgeon. It is not a routine procedure on the NHS, and is usually done by a surgeon who feels there is a clinical need based on pain or discomfort or distress to the patient. If you’re concerned about your labia, they’re causing you pain or psychological disturbance, it is always worthwhile talking to a doctor.

Read the video transcript

Doctor Responses: Enlarged Labia

Dr Pixie answers your most frequently asked questions about enlarged labia such as: Will they get bigger as you get older? Can it affect your health and cleanliness? What can you do to deal with enlarged labia?

With thanks to the Baker Street Medical Centre

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I'm 18 and sexually actuve,iv noticed some changes in my vagina, I know it changes slightly after having sex but my inner labia seems to be a lot (!!) more visable than it used to be, I was just wondering is this normal? or does it mean it is inflamed or anything and needs medical help? I hate the look of it and find it so embarrassing.. It even causes me paid when walking sometimes. I hate it so much!!





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i am a 17 year old and my right labia is way bigger than my left! i am sexually active and i get so self conscious about anyone looking down there. it just looks so horrible and saggy, sort of like hanging ham and it affects my sex life hugely. sometimes it actually rubs against my thigh its so uncomfortable. is it normal? can i do anything?





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Yeah i have a long ..hood bit .. Iam 20 now - i have been in a pickle since i was 13... The middle bit starts and then about an inch down .. Thats where my clitoris is under the hood.. Then i have lips that hang down And if i pull on them they are really long ( its almost impressive ) Iam not botherd about colour (iam white- vag is light brown and pink ) i also can see the vulva when i stand up so it looks like a hotdog when standing up with a dangly bit .. If i sit down the outerlis kinda crumple and the middle bit kinda awkawrdly leans against the sides it looks horrible .. I have only been with one guy he liked it but .. I think cause there is alot of space between the outer lips and the middle vulva it smells reallly fast and it annoys me my discharge is also aparently bitter ... Urgh i feel like the whole deal i have with my vagina sucks .. But it did its job.. Last july i had a beautiful baby girl at home and it did an awesome job... Maybe thats all that matters eh? .... But iam sick of feeling unclean ( the little.. I call them 'cells' fillbwith this white stuff all over my vulva and surounding area and i can squeeze the stuff out and uts not so pleasent .. What is that iam sick of squeezing or feeling like i cant wear underwear that has a small crotch line or g-string( not that i want to) but i find it annoying and i have been called penis girl, tranny, hermaphrodyte .. Etc it hurts so bad ;( iam still not over the comments and iam scared of rejection in the future i got cheated on alot and inthink this may be a part of it . Sigh





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Greetings. I found this website whlie seeking references for a platonic friend with similar concerns. In case you are not aware, merely feeling you have defective or inadequate genitalia can cause you to avoid dating altogether, and that's unfortunate when you have my personal perspective that there really is no arrangement which is entirely common enough to be considered entirely "normal". I'm a little concerned directing her to this site for the simple reason that there seems to be more complaining from those who perceive themselves to have an actual problem, than sage words to the contrary. When I saw your comment about guys cheating on you, I felt I should say something, and I'm sorry If this sounds at all weird coming from a guy. I've dated a lot of women, more than half of whom had thick, long, large, or asymetrical labia. Of those, probably about half were somewhat self-conscious about it. A couple who had protruding pubic bones were self-conscious about those as well. I don't know where women get the idea their genitalia should be invisible, unless their idea of "normal" is a barbie doll. I suspect that more of their self-image came from other girls in high school and very little from actual boyfriends. Nearly every woman I've ever dated has stories of being cheated on. I have concluded from this that most men cheat, and that the problem is not with the women, that is unless I just have a tendency to date women who get cheated on, but that seems unlikely. (I should probably add that I've never cheated on anyone, but as you'll see below, I'm not an ordinary man either) I could add quite a lot of subjects to this message and expound on my observations and real-world social concerns... Oh well, here's a brief outline of my related thoughts: I'm disturbed by the increasing availability of surgical labia reduction, which offends me on all kinds of level, not the least of which is that I happen to love women with "chubby labia" (my girlfriend has chubby labia, and I'd be rather upset if she told me she wanted to reduce it/them). To me, sex should be interactive, and whenever genitals are altered surgically, be it for transgender issues, urinary issues, INTERSEX ISSUES, nerves become severed and as a result, sexual sensitivity is reduced. I would be very turned off if a partner had reduced sensitivity without a really good reason such as spinal trauma, which is unavoidable for the victim. Having been born INTERSEX myself, (Klinefelters, XXY) I am disturbed to think how lucky I am that whatever surgery, I may or may not have had, did not leave me essentially castrated as has been the case for so many others with my condition. On the pro side of things, It has resulted in my becoming much more aware of the wide range of what others consider to be "normal". I know for a fact there are a LOT of men who are turned on by "prominent genitalia" on women, so it may be time you make use of the internet to discover that no matter what names you've been called, your condition is a FEATURE, not a FLAW. I suppose I should see if I can find a single google search phrase to prove this. brb... ...Wow that was entertaining! It seems that the difference between a search that reveals any physical condition as a flaw or a feature is merely the additional of a flattering adjective, ie "Luscious Labia". I hope you find that helpful.

I'm having problems with the inside part. It hangs down a bit low which causes a lot of irritation and uncomfort with majority jeans I wear plus when it start to irritate slot in public it affects the way I walk because I try to get I. A comfortable position. About a year ago I went to the hospital to ask if they could do surgery and they said yes but it would cause a lot of damage. So what do I do.





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You are very lucky to have received that advice at the hospital as there is a growing movement of greedy surgeons eager to slice you up and take your money. You'd be better off to experiment with more comfortable underwear and looser fitting jeans. Just because most women wear tight fitting jeans, doesn't mean you have to. If it hurts you, don't do it. Trust me, you'd like the surgery less. The following is an excerpt of what I wrote to a more recent post: "Whenever genitals are altered surgically, be it for transgender issues, urinary issues, INTERSEX ISSUES, nerves become severed and as a result, sexual sensitivity is reduced. I would be very turned off if a partner had reduced sensitivity without a really good reason such as spinal trauma, which is unavoidable for the victim. Having been born INTERSEX myself, (Klinefelters, XXY) I am disturbed to think how lucky I am that whatever surgery, I may or may not have had, did not leave me essentially castrated as has been the case for so many others with my condition. On the pro side of things, It has resulted in my becoming much more aware of the wide range of what others consider to be "normal"." On a related topic, there are a lot of women who go in for breast englargement or reduction apparently unaware until afteward that it is considered NORMAL to lose most or even all sensitivity in the nipples. For some women, that's enough to drive them to suicide. Again, I think you were very very lucky to get the advice you received. Come to think of it, I have noticed a few girlfriends I had, those with larger, wider, genitalia, had issues with underwear which fully covered the region. I've not looked into it, but I suspect that manufacturers cut them narrow, but that if you do a few google searches, you can find underwear which may do a better job of protecting you from your jeans, and not make you look like you are wearing a diaper or a pad. This should be fun, I'll check it out right now... brb... Wow, the first result was a discussion on reddit by women with that same issue who feel they need to tuck their labia this way or that and complaining that the "gusset" width is inadequate. It also seems that someone in that thread coined a term for it, "vedgies". This should help you find that thread without the need for an actual URL which might be censored depending on the filters used on this site. Try this search phrase (without quote) reddit labia tuck vedgies So it seems that I'm not the first person to think of this, but we have yet to find a provider. MAYBE the solution is to buy underwear made for men, or perhaps boys, depending on your shape. I'm tempted to suggest you look into low profile padding made for bicyclists, in so much as such devices are absolutely made for full coverage without pinching and are by design more "conformal" than any menstrual products. They won't do anything to make you look smaller though, if that's a concern.

I started getting spots on my bum once I hit puberty and am now 20. I tried all sorts of acne creams, and was prescribed fucidin cream by a doctor however nothing really worked. My friend told me she used sudocrem for spots and I gave it a go and it pretty much got rid of them! If spots come up again on my bum i apply sudocrem before bed and they're usually gone by the morning. I feel like alcohol is one cause for mine, if I have a heavy night they often come back. Hope this helps





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Hi I'm 15 I'm 16 very soon, I haven't had sex yet because I'm embarrassed about the look of my vagina. I have big lips on the outside they don't dangle down or anything they are just big, does anyone else have this problem?





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Large labia are a turn on for any real man. You are lucky to have them.





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Thanks Bob! I was afraid I might be the only one voicing support for the, er, "condition". I doubt any men (real or otherwise) are actually intimidated by large labia, and as I said in an earlier comment, I suspect the problem begins with girls comparing themselves to non-anatomically-correct dolls. It might also be a factor that during puberty, the hormone levels might cause some parts to expand more than they would in later life, but that's a subject for the medical staff to consult about on here.

I hate my vagina so much and it makes me really embarrassed! I've nt told anyone not even my mum, can I have a operation at 16 without my parents knowing?





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So im no the only one with large lips, I use to be so scared to have sex with my boyfriend because I thought he would judge me but comes to find out he loves them, I never though it was normal to have such large lips until I just read all theses comments it makes me feel better to know im not the only one! your all beautiful in your own way!





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Hi, My right labia is bigger than the left. It itches, gets red, swollen, Although it does not hurt me but i am getting little tensed now as i feel that it has got increased in size. How do I ease the irritation? Please help me with some suggestions and i want to know how this has happened? I mean i had not this problem before, just one or two months ago , it has started. Kindly help me! Please reply me as soon as possible.





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If you still need an answer, go to your doctor and ask them. The internet is not a good place to get medical help, and your doctor is the only one with access to really help you.





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





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