Getting rid of stretch marks after pregnancy – this is just about any new mother can take. Aside from the pressure of taking care of a new baby new mothers also have to deal with the challenges of shifting hormone levels and scratchy marks.
Stretch marks, what are they?
As the baby grows, so does your belly. The skin over your expanding tummy stretches to accommodate your larger body. Although the skin is fairly flexible and elastic, there are instances that it is overstretched resulting to collagen and elastin (both are proteins that make up the skin tissue) disruption resulting to skin being damaged and torn.
This results to the development of white stripes called stretch marks. Another cause of stretch marks is hormonal changes that accompany during periods of growth. Pregnancy is one such period. Production of glucocorticoid hormones from the adrenal glands increases while pregnant.
The presence of glucocorticoids is a big factor in stretch marks. Glucocorticoids inhibit the production of fibroblasts, the cells that secrete collagen and elastin. With lesser collagen and elastin available, the skin is weaker and unable to cope with excessive pulling and stretching, thus, stretch marks develop. Stretch marks are often seen in areas where you gained the most weight such as your tummy, hips, arms, and thighs.
Lose Weight – Do nothing to treat the stretch marks but do lose the weight. There are pregnant women whose stretch marks faded after losing the baby weight. Unfortunately not many of us are this lucky.
Undergo Laser Therapy – A popular cosmetic surgical method, which uses laser to remove the topmost, scarred layer of the skin. Eventually, with repeated application, the underlying and healthier skin cells beneath will surface. Results will vary on skin tone and color and age of patient. Chemical peels work in the same manner with the exception of the use of acids in removing the scarred skin.
Skin Resurfacing – This is the latest in surgical stretch mark removal involving the application of light pulses serving as guide for the laser over a series of treatments. In between the treatment sessions the body is allowed to heal as collagen and elastin production over the area that was hit with the laser is stimulated.
Dietary Supplements – Increase intake of food high in vitamins A, C, and E that are all essential in collagen and elastin production.
Water Therapy – Drink lots of water to rehydrate and moisten your skin.
Beauty Supplements – Essential fatty oils such as squalene oil in fish also result glowing skin.
Exfoliate – Exfoliate to promote circulation of blood in area marred with stretch marks. The more blood flowing in the area, the more likely proper healing will take place lessening the scar formation.
Stretch Mark Products – Lotions, creams and body oils. Reported effective topical preparations in treating stretch marks include retinoids and alpha hydroxy acids. While pregnant, one can apply a cream made of Centella asiatica extract, vitamin E, and collagen-elastin hydrolysates to supposedly effectively minimize stretch marks. Natural body oils like jojoba and wheatgerm oils not only soothe the skin but the massaging action promotes blood circulation to affected areas.