Pregnancy Stretch Marks – Prevention and Treatment

If someone said to you, “expect to get striae gravid arum when you get pregnant”, would you know what that means? The more common name for this phenomena is stretch marks. Ladies, over half of us will get stretch marks during pregnancy because our skin is stretching at a rapid rate as the baby grows. Most of the time, they will show up in the latter months of pregnancy, but some of the “lucky ones” see these skin markings as soon as their bellies begin growing. Pregnancy stretch marks look somewhat like stripes and usually appear on the stomach and abdominal area. They can also show up on the buttocks, hips, thighs and breasts. If you are a lighter skinned woman, your stretch marks will appear pink. If you are a darker skinned woman, yours will be lighter than the skin around them.

There is supportive tissue under our skin that actually enables the skin to stretch. When this tissue is stretched, collagen separates from the skin and results in small tears. And, voila, stretch marks become visible. Thankfully, it isn’t a painful process and the marks are normally less noticeable as time goes by.

Many women can accept stretch marks while they are pregnant, but we all want to know if there is anything we can do to prevent them in the first place. And most importantly, we want to know how to get rid of stretch marks once we have them. Will they stick around long after the baby arrives?

One of the common topical treatments used by pregnant women is cocoa butter cream. This rich moisturizing cream saturates your skin and can help prevent the appearance of stretch marks. It is said that applying cocoa butter cream to your abdomen, thighs and breasts during pregnancy can help reduce stretch mark development even after the baby arrives. The stretch mark cream can reduce the coloring of the marks and strengthen the skin around those areas. Applying cream to the areas prone to stretch marks prior to your belly growing is a good idea. It could prevent future stretch marks as well.

If you have ever been pregnant, you know that your stomach sometimes itches. Resist the urge to scratch! Take those opportunities to rub lotion over the itchy area instead. The texture of stretch marks can be bumpy or feel deep in the skin. Keeping the skin moisturized will help reduce this rough feeling and keep skin healthy. Many creams designed to remove stretch marks are available on the market today and every budget can handle a tube or two!

Some things to keep in mind: stretch marks can be hereditary and weight gain during pregnancy plays into how much your skin is going to stretch. Stay hydrated! You’re already in the bathroom anyway, right? If you drink a good amount of water during your pregnancy, your stretch marks won’t appear as severe. Daily exercise, in addition to staying hydrated and eating well, will also help keep your skin toned and at the same time increase the skin’s elasticity which means less noticeable stretch marks.

Take heart ladies! The joy of pregnancy doesn’t have to be marred by the thought of stretch marks. Just take the time to take care of yourself (which means you are taking care of the baby at the same time) and take preventive measures during your pregnancy. You’ll be back at the beach before you know it!

Categories : Stretch Marks

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