Dealing with Pregnancy Stretch Marks

By Medically reviewed by Dr. Duyen Le

The pregnancy period presents you with both mental and physical changes. Your thinking, daily routines, and appearance become different now that you have a baby. One of the most apparent changes is stretch marks. These ugly marks can be a distress to some ladies, however, it is not an incurable case.

What causes stretch marks?

Stretch marks are tiny tears in the supporting tissue layers beneath your skin. During pregnancy, you gain about 14 kg in the span of 9 months. These stretch marks can appear when your body grows at a faster speed than your skin, which causes the elastic fibers under the skin surface to break. Stretch marks appear most on the belly and the breasts, the two areas that grow most rapidly. Proneness to stretch marks can depend on genetics, which means you possibly can inherit them from your mom. In other cases, rapid weight gain during pregnancy can also be the cause of stretch marks.

Treatment methods

1. Moisturizing
Apply moisturizers such as cocoa butter or other stretch mark creams to reduce the dryness and itching on the skin.

2. Nourishing from the inside
A sufficient intake of vitamin C tones your skin and make it less susceptible to stretch marks.

3. Weight control
Keep a steady pace of weight gain instead of a sudden surge. For good measures, try to follow your doctor’s recommendations in order to have the right caloric input.

4. Retin-A or laser therapy treatment
The good news is that dermatologists can give you these kinds of therapy after you give birth to make your condition better. This method boosts the collagen growth within your body and helps shrink dilated blood vessels.

5. Focus on fading
According to Heidi Waldorf, associate clinical professor of dermatology at Mount Sinai School of Medicine in New York City, the ideal time to get treatment for stretch marks is when they’re still reddish. Some recommended gels used for treatment can be:

−Gels with ingredients contain a mixture of onion extract and hyaluronic acid are a good choice. According to research, users of the gels claimed their marks faded after 12 weeks of daily use.
Retinoid, which assists in speeding up the cell turnover as well as stimulating new collagen growth. However, this treatment cannot be applied during pregnancy.

6. Dermabrasion
This method uses a wire brush or a rough-edged diamond wheel in order to remove the upper layers of the skin. In other words, this treatment helps renew the skin. However, this may not bring about a drastic change.

Are there ways to prevent stretch marks?

Much to our disappointment, there is no sure way to prevent stretch marks. However, you can lessen the chance of getting stretch marks by keeping your skin hydrated with lotions or creams. Also, keep your inner body hydrated with water to keep yourself healthy. In reality, some mothers nowadays simply accept their new “scarred” skin and embrace the fact that it is in that state because of the beloved baby.

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Hello Health Group does not provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.

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