Every day, cosmetic surgeons are bombarded with questions about the appearance, shape, and size of genital organs. While men are known to obsession over the size of their penis, women often have unaddressed questions about the size of their vagina, and if it is normal or not. At the outset, let us define what is normal.
In the medical context, there is no such thing as an abnormally sized vagina. We must remember that genital organs exist to serve a purpose, and as long as the functional anatomy is without issues, everything else is only cosmetic in nature.
Of all the surgeries that women undergo, several women opt to increase the size of their labia, or clitoris, and they do this solely for cosmetic reasons and with no underlying problem that requires them to undergo such surgeries. In this context, what is a normal vagina?
1. The Average Vaginal Length
Studies to determine averages of female genitalia always point to the wide variation in values collected. For example, the average vaginal length is found to be 9.6 centimeters, but the variance can be as high as 12 centimeters and as low as 6 centimeters as well. This aspect is not defined by age.1
2. The Labia Minora
Up until now, several studies have claimed that a labia minora of length greater than 4 centimeters is abnormal, and anyone with this condition should undergo corrective surgery. However, one recent population study has observed that there is wide variance in labia minora length without affecting the genitalia in any way. It is only a morphological characteristic that is unique to different women.2
3. The Effect Of Age
As you age, the size of both your labia major and labia minora decreases slightly. However, this doesn’t have an impact on the structure or function of your reproductive organs. In general populace, the labia major exhibited a wide variance in sizes, from being 4 centimeters to 11 centimeters long. This is perhaps why a small change in size with age doesn’t have any long term implications.3
4. Clitoral Length
This is the only parameter, according to the study, that has any impact on intercourse and the chances of achieving an orgasm. While clitoral length in women varied from 0.2 centimeters to 2.5 centimeters, women with a longer clitoris experienced orgasms more frequently during intercourse.4
5. Vaginal Length
Most women have a vaginal canal that is at least 6.5 centimeters long. The vaginal width also varies between 2.1 and 3.5 centimeters! Vaginal width changes after childbirth, and women with a more narrow width did report having some pain during intercourse. However, studies show that the vaginal canal expands to accommodate events such as intercourse and childbirth, and in most women, this is not a problem.5
Why is it so essential to get used to your vaginal as it is? Because alternative surgical procedures carry a risk of nerve damage or impairment to the vaginal opening. In some cases, such as gender change operations, it is imperative that the genitals be operated upon. In most other cases, any correction to the genitalia is simply a way to exacerbate the risk of damage that is irreparable.