Can hormonal changes in your body affect the health of the vulva (i.e. Menopause / pregnancy etc.)?
At puberty, fatty tissues deposit around the vulva increasing the size of the labia majora and mon pubis. In some girls, the pink labia minora may become darker. Pubic hair also starts to appear around this time. The vulva then remains similar until pregnancy.
During pregnancy, the vulva can become engorged and varicosities are common. Pigmentation of the vulva, as with other areas of the skin, can be significant. During a vaginal delivery, the muscles and ligaments supporting the vagina may be damaged. As the baby is delivered, perineal tears or episiotomies may further affect the appearance of the vulva. The return of the higher oestrogen hormone level after breastfeeding will generally improve the elasticity and lubrication of the area.
After menopause, the labia majora lose its substance and become less full. Like the skin on other parts of the body, it becomes thinner and loses its elasticity. Hair greying, loss and reduced growth are also observed.
Dr. Tan Toh Lick
10 April 2019