You may or may not have heard of the “husband stitch” as a preventative measure for a loose vagina after childbirth.
If you have I can hear your “ugh…yes”. If you haven’t, allow me to explain:
After you have gone through hours of painful labor and pushed a massive child out of your vagina you may get to experience being stitched up in case you tore or had an episiotomy. A “husband stitch” takes this one step further and one extra stitch is given during the repair of the vaginal tissues after a tear or episiotomy to make sure that there’s no loose vagina as a result of bringing a child into the world.
Now, this seems like it might be one of those wives tales like in this post, but according to many accounts of women who have experienced it, it is not. While it is not common practice it has been known to happen (mostly with consent from the woman-but not always).
Your delicate vaginal opening has experienced frequent (?) penetration from something around 3” in diameter (or more. Listen, I’m not here to judge whatsoever. I thought I was fucked, BTW), and if you have a traumatic birth can all contribute to how stretched your vagina gets.
For example, a person having their first uncomplicated vaginal birth at age 20 may experience a vaginal snap back easier than someone having their third baby with second-degree tears at age 30.
That said, regardless of your situation, your elastic vagina will spring back to it’s pre-Good Goddess there’s a baby coming out of me-shape, it just may take a bit more time for some folks than others.
What do I do about a vaginal laxity?
Hey, just a heads up that I’m an affiliate for the links below. That means that if you purchase one of these courses I may receive a commission. It’ll be “tight” for the both of us! Fuck, I’m hilarious.
The ol’ husband stitch isn’t the ideal way to fix a loose vagina in any way. in fact, it might be worthwhile to have that chat with your partner, midwife, or doctor to make it entirely clear that you and your vagina would appreciate sutures only up to where your natural vaginal opening begins.
A bit of a shift in your pelvic floor is normal after you’ve had a baby but there are some preventative measures you can take while you’re pregnant to make sure that you don’t experience anything above and beyond a little bit of extra vaginal elasticity (think prolapse, extended urinary incontinence, painful intercourse).
Pelvic floor physiotherapy is a corrective measure as well as a preventative measure. That means that you can take a proactive approach to your pelvic floor health now as you sit there in your pregnant glory so that you don’t have to do a more intensive therapy if you do end up needing extra support after you have vaginal childbirth.
Your pelvic floor is a muscle that needs working out to keep strong. You spend time toning those quads….your pal Your Vagina needs the same TLC!
Aside from knowing that you’ve got a buff muff (you can keep this info to yourself or share your accomplishment. Either way, you’ve got my mad respect) having a strong pelvic floor will help you with your labor as well as help you avoid issues that may arise in your pelvic floor as a result of childbirth.
Have a conversation with your healthcare provider about what they recommend, but I highly suggest checking out The Vagina Coach. Not only is she straight up about pelvic floor health, but she offers some amazing courses that will help you get those pelvic floor muscles in tip-top shape for your labor.
If you’ve already given birth and have been under the impression that you have a “loose vagina” you can find some courses through her that will help you regain elasticity to allow you to get back to things like running without peeing or increased sexual pleasure.
From my personal experience (in case you didn’t click on the highlighted “I thought I was fucked” text-I talked about my four kids that I had vaginally) strengthening your pelvic floor is an absolute must-do during your pregnancy and as maintenance after your baby is born.