Stretch marks in pregnancy
Pregnancy is one of the most beautiful processes that a woman can go through, however, the body undergoes many changes in a very short time when you are pregnant, and although everything usually returns to normal after having our baby in your arms, the stretching of the skin can leave some marks that last much longer.
This is the case of the appearance of stretch marks in pregnancy, which are small scars that will be difficult to remove once they occur.
During pregnancy, the skin may stretch more than 10 times causing stretch marks.
The increase in volume that we suffer in the last months of pregnancy and the lack of elasticity of the skin to adapt to large measures are the main causes that promotes the appearance of stretch marks in pregnancy.
It is important for you to know that not all women have stretch marks in pregnancy, but the best way to prevent them from appearing is to take precautions to prevent them, or if you are already there, reduce their size and visibility with effective treatments. Take note of these recommendations!
What are stretch marks?
When we refer to stretch marks, we are talking about those small lines or sunken marks that appear on the surface of the skin when it goes through sudden changes in weight and volume. For this reason, stretch marks tend to be very frequent in pregnancy, but can also be generated by an increase in estrogen production at puberty, rapid weight gain or loss as well as by changes in the volume of muscle mass.
Stretch marks occur most often in the abdomen, but are also common in areas such as the thighs, hips, and breasts. At first they are pink but over time, they become finer with a whitish hue and are usually between one and three centimeters long and between one and five millimeters wide.
The skin does not have enough elasticity to adapt to large measures
What causes stretch marks in pregnancy?
During pregnancy, our skin can stretch up to 10 times more to accommodate our baby, which means that the skin that normally covers a few centimeters, in pregnancy can cover up to ten centimeters. As a consequence of this, small breaks occur in the elastic fibers of the dermis, which cause scars in the form of curved lines of whitish color: Stretch marks in pregnancy.
In addition to the increase in the volume of the belly, especially during the third trimester of pregnancy, the skin becomes drier and collagen production is altered, which increases the chances of the appearance of stretch marks, also a product of the hormonal changes that women experience.
One of the aesthetic discomforts that most affect women before and after pregnancy is stretch marks.
What increases the chances of stretch marks in pregnancy?
Have you ever wondered why there are women who despite not having applied creams, did not suffer the appearance of stretch marks in pregnancy. What happens is that the hereditary factor also plays an important role, as does each person’s skin type. If your mom got the annoying stretch marks in pregnancy, chances are you’ll get them too.
If you have dry and soft skin you are more prone to stretch marks
Although it is very difficult to predict if you will be prone to this problem, there are certain factors that predispose you more to having them than other women. Each skin type is different, if your skin type tends to be dry and lighter, you will be more prone to stretch marks, since the dermis cracks more easily if it is poorly hydrated.
On the other hand, the appearance of stretch marks in certain women may also depend on the speed at which your belly increases in volume or size during the third stage of pregnancy. You will be more likely to develop it if you gain weight faster than recommended, if you have more than one baby, or even if you have excess amniotic fluid.
What can I do to prevent stretch marks in pregnancy?
Although we cannot intervene in the natural physical and hormonal changes that we experience during pregnancy, what we can do is follow the following basic recommendations to help prevent stretch marks in pregnancy, or at least reduce their appearance on our skin.
Controls weight gain during pregnancy
Remember that excessive weight gain when you are pregnant increases the chances that the skin will spread too far and the fibers of the dermis will break. Therefore, try not to gain more than the recommended weight in pregnancy (between 11.5 to 15.9 kg) and do it as slowly as possible to avoid these skin lesions.
Keep your skin well hydrated
The best way to keep your skin hydrated is to consume a lot of water every day, this way we favor the natural elasticity in our skin. Another way to do this is to consistently apply moisturizers twice a day.
With the subject of creams you must be careful, remember that they must be special for pregnant women and must be approved by your doctor before using them. Forget about reducing creams, they can harm the baby, always look for special anti-stretch mark creams for pregnancy.
Hydrates your skin from the outside too
Healthy and balanced diet
Food is a great allied in the prevention of stretch marks. Eating foods rich in silicon favors the creation of collagen and you can get them in: beet, potato, ponytail, alfalfa, whole grains and green leafy vegetables.
It is also important to consume those containing vitamin A (dairy products, carrots, apricots, nisperos), E (vegetable oils, cereals, vegetables) and C (citrus, raspberry, strawberry, papaya, pepper) to improve skin firmness and elasticity. Don’t forget to include in your diet the essential fatty acids that help in the production of collagen.
During the third trimester of pregnancy the skin becomes drier so it is more likely the appearance of stretch marks during this stage.
Keeping in shape during pregnancy is very beneficial for your health, also a good muscle tone is key to prevent small breaks in the skin. However, remember to practice only those exercises that are exclusive and suitable for pregnant women.
You have many options, swimming, aerobic exercise, yoga and pilates are the most recommended options for moms-to-be.
Avoids sun exposure
Constant exposure to the sun’s strong rays will cause your skin to dry out and increase the chances of stretch marks. The best thing you can do if you go to the beach or to a picnic where you’ll get plenty of sun is to always be under an umbrella and use sunscreen and moisturizer all over your body after you get home.
Massage your skin
Each time you apply anti-stretch marks creams, perform small circular massages on the skin, thus helping to increase the effect of the cream and manage to stimulate circulation in those areas more prone to the appearance of stretch marks.
Stimulates circulation with a massage in the area
Choose the best stretch mark creams
To treat stretch marks in pregnancy, whether we want to prevent them or stop their appearance, we need a cream that hydrates, revitalizes and restores the skin, favoring its elasticity. So when you buy a stretch mark cream look at the small letters to ensure that among its components are these ingredients: centella asiatica, oils of yoyoba and borage, musk oil, aloe vera, argan oil and vitamin E. These compounds act as biostimulants and have skin repair effects.
Anti-stretch mark creams are of great help because they contain substances that promote the formation of elastic fibers and collagen and have active repairers. For its benefits to be most effective, you must apply them twice a day, in the morning and at night, so that the skin remains hydrated. In addition, by means of circular massages you will stimulate the circulation and you will penetrate all the active nutrients that these offer.
Home Remedies to Eliminate Stretch Marks in Pregnancy
Today there are many products such as moisturizers and lotions that serve exclusively to address this skin problem. There are also thousands of non-invasive aesthetic treatments for their elimination, however, some of them tend to be very expensive, so if you want to prevent or reduce their appearance in a natural way, here we bring you several home remedies that will be more or equally effective.
- Natural oil massages: You can use vegetable oils right after you get out of the shower. When we are still wet, we should apply the oil with gentle massages all over the body and wait long enough for it to be absorbed. We recommend using rosehip oil, as it contains high levels of essential fatty acids that help regenerate skin tissues. They can also use oils based on olive, coconut, almonds, are the most effective in the prevention of stretch marks and help in the hydration of dry skin and mixed.
- Aloe vera treatment: Aloe vera is a natural element for many skin-related problems. In the case of stretch marks, their healing and healing properties will help to get rid of them, just apply it directly on the affected area, rub the area with circular movements and let act for about 15 minutes, then proceed to rinse with warm water and ready.
- Lemon juice: The citrus in the lemon will help your skin a lot. Just apply and rub the lemon juice on the stretch marks already formed, let it penetrate into your skin and then rinse with cold water. The lemon is an excellent beauty trick, just remember that to see the results you need to be very constant and apply it without fail every day.
- Egg whites: Eggs work perfectly as treatments for stretch marks because they are a rich source of protein. To apply this home remedy, you only need to use the egg whites because it contains amino acids and proteins. The first thing you should do is beat the egg whites and clean the areas of the stretch marks with a little water, apply a good amount of white on your skin with a brush, wait a few minutes and then rinse. For best results, use olive oil to moisturize your skin. Perform this remedy every day.
Remember that the important thing to avoid or reduce stretch marks in pregnancy is that you follow all these recommendations constantly, as soon as possible and try to continue with this routine several months after childbirth. With a little perseverance and dedication you can achieve amazing results!