Preventing stretch marks

Preventing Stretch Marks: Before And After Pregnancy

Prevention is key to avoid stretch marks during pregnancy.

From everything you've experienced throughout your pregnancy, there will be unforgettable moments that will accompany you forever. Being a mother is one of the most wonderful experiences in life, but  the last thing you want to treasure are stretch marks in the belly, breasts, and legs. If you want to know how to prevent stretch marks during pregnancy, and how to get rid of stretch marks in case you already have them, read this article.

Preventing stretch marks during pregnancy

During pregnancy, there are so many changes in our body that we may not recognize ourselves. One of the consequences of the increase in weight and volume that occurs gradually (but without ceasing) is the appearance of the dreaded stretch marks that furrow our skin, especially across the belly. Hence the concern of many future mothers to know how to prevent stretch marks during pregnancy.

It is something that happens little by little. Considering the rate at which our skin is stretching (mainly in certain areas such as the belly, hips, thighs, and breasts), it should be borne in mind that anything we do to prevent its appearance should become a daily routine.

But first, let's find out more about their origin and we'll get it right when it comes to preventing stretch marks.

What are stretch marks?

They are nothing more than elongated cracks that occur in the connective tissue of the skin and atrophy the upper layers. This is due to excessive stretching (or in a very short time) in comparison with the level of elasticity of the skin itself, which when not resisting the tension ends up deforming by areas forming the characteristic furrows.

During pregnancy, not only the variations of the volume of our body accentuate the appearance of stretch marks, but the hormonal changes that intensely take place also repercuss to its state, becoming more prone to suffer alterations. Therefore, the key is to anticipate the irreversible moment and discover how to prevent stretch marks in pregnancy.

Types of striae

Not all stretch marks look the same. Depending on how they look, it will provide us with information about how recoverable they may be.

-Red and purple stretch marks

When you have  red  and purple stretch marks, it is due to the existence of blood supply below them. This is often the case with the newly formed ones, and although they are more visible than the white ones, the positive part is that, with the appropriate treatment, purple and red strech marks are in time to recover to a great extent and even disappear.

-White stretch marks

If we have white stretch marks, it would indicate that they are old enough as to have arrived at the point of disappearance of their own sanguine irrigation. In such a case, before they had that tonality, they had to have been red striae, that being the moment when they could have been repaired if they had received the attention they needed.

6 tips to prevent stretch marks

By constantly following these recommendations, you will surely be able to prevent the formation of stretch marks during your pregnancy.

1. Moisturize your skin twice a day

You can resort to a stretch mark cream or simply a good moisturizer  capable of keeping the skin elastic and nourished for long enough to endure until the next application with the feeling of hydration.

There are special anti-stretch mark creams on the market for pregnant women, which lack certain types of additives that could harm the baby when absorbed by the mother's skin and reach the bloodstream. If you prefer, you can use them and maintain the habit of applying them, not only during pregnancy but also during the 2 - 3 months following childbirth to ensure that your skin will recover more efficiently.

2. Take care of your skin on the outside, but also on the inside

When it comes to giving your skin the attention it needs to know exactly how to prevent stretch marks during pregnancy, take care of it from the outside, but also the inside.

What do we mean by that?  Keep your skin healthy  as you would do with the rest of your body.

Don't forget the omega-3 fatty acids and vitamins A, E, C and D that keep your skin in good condition, as well as paying attention to minerals, especially magnesium, which are necessary for the natural synthesis of collagen: This will help maintain the internal structure of the layers that make up your skin in good condition.

3. Keep your weight gain under control

No matter what people tell you. Be prudent and follow the instructions of the health personnel carrying out your pregnancy. There is nothing better for stretch marks to appear soon than to gain a lot of weight in a very short time.

Preventing stretch marks
Drinking water is key to preventing stretch marks from appearing on your skin.

4. Drink enough water

When we tell you to keep your skin hydrated, you probably think of the stretch mark cream that you apply morning and night every day, but this issue goes beyond that.

Consuming an insufficient level of water would harm both your health and your child's, and consequently, your skin, the organ that protects your organism from the outside, would also be seriously damaged. It is not questionable: For many reasons, you must drink enough water.

5. Avoid unprotected sun exposure

While sunbathing is beneficial for both your health and your baby's, receiving the sun's rays directly on the skin and without protection can seriously damage your epidermis.

If we bear in mind that stretch marks are lesions of the skin's outer layers, the direct incidence of the sun's rays would aggravate their condition.

6. Do exercise and quit toxic habits

Now that you are pregnant the responsibility that you feel as a mother, carrying a life within you that depends on you, surely you quit harmful habits, such as smoking, consuming alcohol or other toxic substances for both.

Both alcohol and nicotine have a negative effect on the health of your skin, and when you quit them, its aspect and health improve. Also, if you do regular exercise, oxygen will revitalize your skin to prevent the formation of stretch marks.

How to get rid of stretch marks

If despite having put all the means described above on how to prevent stretch marks in pregnancy, you have not managed to do it, we tell you what options you have to treat this unsightly problem.

-Stretch mark cream

The market is full of cosmetic products like stretch mark cream, containing laboratory formulas specially designed to restore the internal structure of the skin when it is already damaged (as prevention has not worked). They are sold in pharmacies and do not need a prescription, but it is important to get the proper product.

-Natural anti-stretch mark oil or cream

For those who wonder how to get rid of stretch marks in a more natural way and free of synthetic products, there is also a growing offer of natural cosmetics with active ingredients indicated to stretch marks removal.

Among their ingredients, jojoba oil is very common for the elasticity it provides to the skin without being sticky. Also, rosehip oil is very beneficial to eliminate stretch marks, as it has a regenerating and healing effect. However, be careful not to expose yourself to the sun after applying it, as this could cause skin spots to appear.

-Medical treatment

Some aesthetic and medical-aesthetic centers count among their main non-invasive treatments those aimed at eliminating stretch marks (or minimizing them) through techniques ranging from promoting the formation of collagen in damaged areas to the use of lasers.

As these are more intensive treatments,  it is recommended not to resort to them in case of pregnancy.

Preventing stretch marks
Rosehip oil, among others, is indicated to stretch marks removal. 

Check out the original article: ¿Cómo prevenir las estrías en el embarazo? 6 consejos para evitarlas at