Ingela Lundin Kvalem, a professor of psychology from the University of Oslo who studied the causes and the psychological effects of intimate surgery, identified three reasons why cosmetic surgery on private parts is a growing trend.
"Firstly, it's about the ideal picture. With the pubic hair removed, the labia become visible. Additionally, porn and media in general provide ample opportunities for comparison. Secondly, it has become affordable. Thirdly, when one hears of others who have had this type of surgery, one starts to think of getting it too," Lundin Kvalem told NRK.
"Nowadays, being clean-shaven down there is the trend, which opens the labia minora. I really doubt that the increase is about health," Lotti Helström told Swedish national broadcaster SVT, venturing that health-related issues needn't necessarily be treated with such radical means as surgery. Additionally, complications of pubic surgery and irreversible mutilations as a result of botched operations may lead to a dramatic setback in one's sex life.
"There is an incredible ignorance on how female genitals generally look," Suzann Larsdotter told SVT, advocating enlightenment efforts to prevent unnecessary surgical interventions.
According to Charles Randquist, director of Victoria Clinic in Stockholm, a third of patients in the younger age bracket is being rejected after explanations. For him, this is rather a psychological problem due to lack of self-esteem, SVT reported.
Furthermore, there is a risk of aesthetic surgery and beauty procedures getting misused as a loophole. Previously, Sweden prohibited certain types of intimate surgery in a bid to protect migrant women from genital mutilation, be it voluntary or not. According to Sara Johnsdotter, medical anthropologist at Malmö University, there is currently a "grey zone" in Swedish law.
Never miss a story again — sign up to our Telegram channel and we'll keep you up to speed!