This year we've talked about surgically enhanced back dimples, nipple reduction and non-invasive 'nose lifters', but while these controversial procedures are aesthetically-driven, the latest trend for radio frequency treatments down below is more about enhancing sensation.
Vaginal laxity (that's looseness, in layman's terms) is a common subsequence of childbirth and its side effects include a loss of feeling during intercourse. We asked Dr Sabika Karim, who specialises in cosmetic medicine and minimally invasive treatments for the face and body, about what her nonsurgical vaginal tightening treatment 'Geneveve' promises – and what it delivers.
Who is this treatment for?
"The Geneveve treatment is for women who want to boost their confidence and wellbeing when it comes to intimate issues such as enjoyment of sex and urinary incontinence. These can be due to a condition called 'vaginal laxity,' which is extremely common."
What exactly is vaginal laxity?
"Vaginal laxity can be caused by the stretching that can occur with vaginal childbirth, pregnancy alone, or even just over time, as with facial skin. According to 81% of Obstetrics and Gynaecology practitioners, vaginal laxity often goes un-reported by their patients, and therefore undiscussed and untreated. This can have a profound effect on a woman's sexual experience in terms of how much she can physically feel during intercourse, and by extension, her overall health and well-being. Also, vaginal walls help to support the bladder and when they lose their strength over time, incontinence can be the result."
The vaginal tissue becomes weakened from the natural ageing process"
Is this a treatment you should have at a certain age?
"We don't specify or recommend an age to have the treatment done, as your need for it can be very dependent on lifestyle. For example, if you've had children, the treatment may be more effective and feel more noticeable to you than to someone else your age who has never given birth. The vaginal tissue also becomes weakened from the natural ageing process, so the older you are, the more likely it is that you will benefit from the treatment."
How can it empower women?
"Fortunately, talking openly about intimate issues is not as taboo as it was a few years ago. More and more women are having the confidence to speak up about not feeling as much during sex, or leaking a bit (or a lot) when they laugh, cough, or exercise. It can actually be quite empowering, once you hear there's a nonsurgical treatment, to take that first step and ask about it. We don't want our patients, or women in general, to just 'settle' and deal day in and day out with seeing if there's something safe and easy to help."
What are the physical results?
"The Geneveve treatment was specifically designed to help the millions of women who would otherwise silently accept vaginal laxity. Quite simply put, it's a treatment that makes the vagina feel tighter, stronger and more responsive again. Just like skin, vaginal tissue relies on collagen and elastin for its support. By naturally stimulating the formation of healthy new collagen and elastin cushioning, the tissue literally becomes renewed."
Is it an uncomfortable treatment?
"Definitely not! Geneveve works at a cellular level to stimulate your own body to rebuild and restore collagen within the vaginal tissue – without surgery, without pain and without down time. What makes this treatment unique as well is that it actually cools the surface of the tissue while gently heating the deeper tissue, which adds to the safety and comfort."
What happens during the treatment?
"At the beginning of the procedure the practitioner will insert a treatment tip (the size of a toothbrush, but without bristles!) just inside the vaginal opening. This tip is circumferentially moved around the opening of the vagina delivering just the right amount of alternating pulses of heating and cooling. There can be a feeling of warmth during the 30-minute treatment, but our patients find their experience to be comfortable and quick, with no soreness or special needs required after the procedure. Unlike surgical vaginal reconstruction procedures, the Geneveve treatment renews vaginal tissue discreetly, without incisions, tissue scarring or need for anaesthesia."
Are the results permanent?
"Geneveve is a single-session solution – its lasting results mean only one treatment should be needed to feel a difference. Everyone's baseline level of laxity and natural response mechanisms may vary, but results typically peak at around 90 days and will still be evident in excess of 12 months. Patients may desire a touch-up treatment in that second year."
"Some of my patients have the treatment as a preventative measure"
How long post-pregnancy would you recommend to wait before having the treatment?
"Many changes happen to a woman's body during and after pregnancy. Though the Geneveve treatment is very safe, I would usually recommend my patients wait six months post delivery, whether it's natural or by C Section. This allows the vaginal tissues to heal, so that after the treatment, the tissues can produce the maximum amount of new collagen, giving the best possible result. It's also important to have finished breastfeeding."
Are there any repercussions if the patient becomes pregnant again?
"Interestingly, some of my patients want to have the treatment as a preventative measure – putting extra collagen in the bank – before trying to get pregnant. So no, there are no repercussions." By Bridget March - Jul 11, 2017
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