Pregnancy brings in a ton of happiness and fond memories!! Chances are stretch marks aren’t one of them.
Obviously, pregnancy stretches your belly’s skin. But there’s more to stretch marks than that. Stretch marks are a form of scarring on the skin; the result of the rapid stretching of the skin associated with rapid growth or rapid weight changes. Tearing of the dermis leads onto the appearance of the stretch marks. Hormonal changes associated with puberty, pregnancy, bodybuilding, and hormone replacement therapy also influence the appearance of stretch marks. Genetic factors may also play a role. If your Mom has it, chances are you will have them too. Other factors like younger age at pregnancy, high body mass index, and weight gain over 15 kg (33 pounds) during pregnancy and higher baby birth weight were independently associated with the occurrence of stretch marks. Teenagers are at highest risk of developing severe stretch marks.
SYMPTOMS AND SIGNS
They first appear as reddish or purple lines, but tend to gradually fade to a lighter range. The affected areas appear empty and are soft to the touch. Stretch marks occur in the dermis, the resilient middle layer that helps the skin retain its shape. No stretch marks will form as long as there is support within the dermis. Stretching plays more of a role in where the marks occur and in what direction they run. Stretching alone is not the cause.
Stretch marks can appear anywhere on the body, but are most likely to appear in places where larger amounts of fat are stored. Most common places are the abdomen (especially near the navel), breasts, upper arms, underarms, back, thighs (both inner and outer), hips, and buttocks.
Between 75% and 90% of women will develop stretch marks to some degree during pregnancy. Usually Stretch marks appear during the sixth or seventh month, primarily during the 3rd trimester. It is crucial to moisturize. Skin becomes more pliant, more plasticized, and better able to stretch when it’s well hydrated
Local treatment with tretinoin cream was beneficial in improving the appearance of stretch marks in some studies, but not others. Data from these reports are insufficient to determine whether the treatment is effective. In large doses, tretinoin can cause birth defects and we feel it is best avoided for treatment of stretch marks during pregnancy.
In a randomized trial, Trofolastin- a cream containing Centella asiatica extract, alpha tocopherol (vitamin E), and collagen-elastin hydrolysates seemed to prevent development of stretch marks in women prone to this problem, but further study is needed before this intervention can be recommended. Cocoa butter was not effective in preventing stretch marks in another randomized trial.
How to Get Rid of Stretch Marks
No one in Sacramento, Roseville or Granite Bay or Folsom need to worry about Stretch Marks as effective treatments are available right here at Sacramento Skin And Laser in Carmichael, CA.
To be effective, treatment generally needs to be applied to the stretch marks when they are red (i.e., active). Once stretch marks pass to the later stages, where they become white or silver — often with deep indentations — they are much more challenging to treat. However, new treatments like Fraxel Dual® 1550 nm laser available at the Center for Aesthetic Medicine improves white stretch marks. Lasers promote synthesis of healthy, new collagen, which has been damaged when stretch marks appear.
Benefits of Laser treatment include
- Improvement in the appearance
- Little to no downtime
- Smoother, better-looking skin
- Improved tone and texture of the stretch mark
Now patients in the Carmichael area can just erase these nasty Stretch Marks with the help of Fraxel Dual® 1550 Laser available only at the Sacramento Skin And Laser