What are stretch marks? These are silvery lines which started off pink or red streaks across the belly, thighs, hips, breasts and butt. They show up around 13 to 21 weeks of pregnancy. Unfortunately there is no cream or lotion to prevent these “battle” scars of pregnancy.
What causes stretch marks? As the body rapidly gains weight during pregnancy, the skin cannot keep up with the change causing the elastic fibers under the surface of the skin to break. Stretch marks happen in the middle layer of the skin (dermis) between the epidermis and the subcutis. About 90% of women do get stretch marks and a lot has to do with genetics. If you’re mother had stretch marks while pregnant, chances are you’ll get one too. But stretch marks don’t just affect pregnant women, they are very common in other people especially those who rapidly gain weight.
You may not be able to prevent stretch marks but there’s one factor to consider in their formation – weight gain. If you gain weight too much and too fast then you will have stretch marks in no time. So watch the weight by avoiding overeating, not eating for two and keeping cravings at bay.
You can also do low impact exercises like yoga or swimming. Always consult with your health provider when engaging in strenuous physical activity.
Experts also recommend keeping the skin moisturized and hydrated. Eat plenty of fruits and vegetables and drink at least 8 glasses of water. It may not prevent stretch marks but at least you’ll have a better looking skin and the baby in your belly will be healthy.
Eventually those lines will fade in time to grey or silvery lines. So just wear them like a badge of motherhood and embrace your new skin with pride.