WHY THO: THE UNEDITED TRUTH ABOUT STRETCH MARKS
One of the most universally dreaded pregnancy symptoms is, ironically, really quite innocuous. It doesn’t hurt. It doesn’t indicate a larger problem. It goes by a simple, but descriptive, name: The stretch mark. We personally think it’s akin to laugh lines, a badge of having done something awesome. But we also understand wanting to keep a smooth belly after the baby comes out. And while it might not be possible to guarantee stretch mark free skin, there are a few things you can do to make them less likely to appear.
As the name implies, your skin stretches dramatically over a fairly short period of time. When your body expands faster than your skin can cover it, it tears. The scar that forms in its place is a stretch mark. To make matters worse, the body’s retention of water during pregnancy weakens the bonds between collagen fibers, making it easier for the skin to tear when stretched. Stretching also contributes to itchy, uncomfortable bellies. Some people are more prone to stretch marks than others—but you may be able to minimize them.
Apply belly oils as early as possible (think about the old adage, “if you’re thirsty you’re already dehydrated”). It’s never too soon.
Hydrate from the inside because it affects the outside, too. Also, eat a healthy diet rich in vitamin C, E, zinc, and folic acid.
If you have them and really want to get rid of them, laser treatments could help to tone them down (though results vary)
NEUROTIC QUESTION(S) OF THE DAY
How do I know if I’m more susceptible to stretch marks?
If you had them at some point before pregnancy—weight gain or loss—it’s likely they will show up again, though not definite (some of us at HATCH have them from adolescence but didn’t get them during pregnancy). If you gain a lot of weight during pregnancy, you may also be more at risk. Some claim that if you are over 35 years old you may be less prone to them versus younger women in their 20s because of hormone levels.
Where will they show up (besides my belly)?
Where they appear ranges—the belly is a given—but usually they’ll show up anywhere you tend to gain weight. So, yes, your thighs, your boobs, and your butt are also all susceptible.
Belly Oil, Stretch mark reduction therapy