Stretch marks in pregnancy, how to prevent them

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Marie-Ange Demory
@marie-angedemory
Author and references

Contents

  • 1 What are stretch marks
  • 2 What stretch marks look like
  • 3 Where stretch marks appear
  • 4 Causes of stretch marks
  • 5 Stretch marks in pregnancy: when they appear
  • 6 Stretch marks in pregnancy: how to prevent them
  • 7 MyModernsParents recommends: the new Bio-Oil Skin Care Oil (Natural)
  • 8 Why Choose Bio-Oil Skin Care Oil (Natural)
  • 9 When and how to use Bio-Oil in pregnancy
  • 10 Thing Contains Bio-Oil
  • 11 Scientific studies on Bio-Oil

Let's start with the good news: it is absolutely not certain that they will sprout during pregnancy. Let's move on to the less good news: once they appear they are very difficult to send away. We are talking about stretch marks in pregnancy, a fairly common imperfection for which the watchword is only one: prevention. In fact, playing early is essential to avoid the annoying "streaks" on the skin. The attack strategy? Multifactorial. And now we explain why and what to do.



What are stretch marks

The scientific name is "striae distensae", although we all know them as stretch marks. They appear as streaks on the surface of the skin, even if their origin is in the dermis, the deepest layer. They look like scars and in fact they are because they are caused by the fracture of the collagen fibers in the dermis.

According to the dossier of the Ministry of Health on this topic, stretch marks in pregnancy affect about half of pregnant women. Therefore, if you suffer from it, know that you are in good company, even if this is certainly not a great consolation. Also keep in mind that they occur more often in those who are in their first pregnancy and in those who are younger.


How stretch marks appear

The streaks are more or less long and change color according to their "stage": in an initial phase they go from red to purple (a sign of an ongoing inflammatory state), while after some time they become whitish. When they appear, stretch marks can be itchy.


The dimensions are also variable: you can have stretch marks of a few millimeters and others of several centimeters. Sometimes 2 or 3 join together, forming small groups. On the abdomen and hips, the stretch marks are vertical. Conversely, on the breast (around the mammary areola) they are horizontal.

Where stretch marks appear

The points "preferred" by stretch marks are those most subject to changes in weight or size: the abdomen (especially in pregnancy), the hips and breasts in the first place. Other areas can also be affected: the hips, buttocks, arms, thighs (especially the inside).

Causes of stretch marks

Stretch marks appear for several reasons. There are mechanical and other hormonal factors. The first is the easiest to understand: the accumulation of weight during pregnancy "stretches" the skin especially in some points, first of all the abdomen. This mechanism causes collagen fibers to break down and streaks to appear. Weight changes (in excess, but also in the case of weight loss) are also a cause of their appearance, especially if the changes occur suddenly.

In the vast majority of cases, hormonal changes with an overproduction of cortisol are at the base of stretch marks. This hormone, produced by the adrenal glands, weakens the elastic and collagen fibers. It is also linked to increased stress levels, which are never good for you, let alone in pregnancy.


Another element can favor the onset of stretch marks: if less blood reaches the skin (for example, due to a constriction of the vessels due to age), the oxygenation of the tissues is compromised, with less nutrients and a greater accumulation of waste. Furthermore, there is a real genetic predisposition to stretch marks: there are women who have a variation in the genes that act on the degradation of collagen.


Finally, lifestyle plays an important role: improper diet, smoking habits and a sedentary lifestyle are contributing causes of the appearance of stretch marks.

Stretch marks in pregnancy: when they appear

Generally, stretch marks are a blemish that occurs starting from the second trimester of pregnancy, between the sixth and eighth month. And it's easy to see why. Among the reasons for their onset there are the stresses to which the skin is subjected, especially in the points where it is more "pulled", therefore on the abdomen.

Stretch marks in pregnancy: how to prevent them

We said at the beginning that the approach for the prevention of stretch marks in pregnancy involves various "steps". In order to achieve your goal, none of these steps should be overlooked.

  • Weight. Not accumulating too many kilos is not only a question of aesthetics, but of real health: excess is not good for either the mother or the child. Accumulating weight means subjecting the skin to considerable stress with the possible breakdown of collagen fibers and therefore the appearance of stretch marks. The same is true, however, also for significant and sudden weight loss.
  • Diet. Prevention inevitably also involves the correct way of eating. Junk food builds up toxins that make the skin less healthy. To make it more elastic and therefore less prone to stretch marks, the diet of a pregnant woman must be very rich in water, proteins, vitamins and antioxidants, all elements that contribute substantially to the elasticity of the skin.
  • Smoke. Apart from the fact that, in theory, you should have abandoned cigarettes already from the positive pregnancy test, if you have not already done so you think it will be a very useful thing for the skin as well. Isn't that a good incentive?
  • Physical activity. In addition to improving breathing, training the muscles, preparing for childbirth in an optimal way, relaxing the future mother, movement is very useful for the well-being of our skin. Obviously we must not exaggerate because excesses are never healthy: in pregnancy, moderation is the main rule in any area. Among other things, as the Ministry of Health points out, some sports - such as weights and tennis - excessively stretch the skin, especially if practiced at a very intense level.
  • Skin hydration. Nourishing the skin with oils or moisturizers is the other very important step in the "war" against stretch marks. Particular attention must be paid to the most “at risk” areas, such as breasts and abdomen, to improve their elasticity. Consistency is essential: application must take place every day. Abundant with the quantities and massage carefully.

MyModernsParents recommends: the new Bio-Oil Skin Care Oil (Natural)

As we often do, we want to give you some tips on how to take care of your skin and, in this case, prevent stretch marks. The right product for you is the new 100% Natural Bio-Oil oil, a real helping hand to reduce the possibility of unpleasant streaks appearing on the skin. Furthermore, if they have already occurred, Bio-Oil is able to improve their appearance.



In reality, the potential of this product are multiple and concern various skin imperfections: ranging from the treatment of scars (surgical, acne, burns, etc.), to that of skin spots (for example caused by excessive sun exposure or changes hormonal), from the treatment of dehydration to skin aging by promoting skin toning (with an improvement in wrinkles). A 360-degree approach, even if here we will deal with its important function for stretch marks in pregnancy.

Take note!

Why choose Bio-Oil Skin Care Oil (Natural)

The reasons for relying on the new Bio-Oil are many.

  • 100% natural. The components are entirely natural. This feature makes it ideal for pregnancy which is an extremely delicate period. For example, while you are expecting a baby you can become more sensitive to certain substances, with more or less important allergic reactions. With Bio-Oil you do not run this danger as it is dermatologically tested on sensitive skin. 
  • Complete formulation. Bio-Oil is not a "simple" oil. Its formula is composed of 14 vegetable oils rich in essential fatty acids. In this way, it helps to maintain and restore the skin's natural physiology. The result? Elastic and hydrated skin.
  • Pleasant texture. One of the defects of creams and oils could be that they are too mushy, "stick" or greasy and never absorb, giving the unpleasant sensation of clothes sticking to the body. Bio-Oil also overcomes this problem because it is quickly absorbed, non-greasy and non-comedogenic, that is, it does not predispose to pimples.
  • Recyclable. Attention to nature is expressed in the round. The product packaging is in fact completely recyclable.
  • Reduces itching. The plant extracts of Bio-Oil relieve the itching that often accompanies the appearance of new stretch marks. Also used regularly, Bio-Oil relieves dehydrated and itchy skin related to cholestasis of pregnancy.
  • Effective and safe. The product has been dermatologically tested on sensitive skin, giving excellent results in terms of tolerability. It does not contain perfume, dyes, preservatives, parabens and petrolatum, substances that could cause skin reactions in particularly delicate subjects.

When and how to use Bio-Oil in pregnancy

Stretch mark prevention must begin as early as possible. There is no need to wait, but it is best to start immediately, starting in the first trimester of pregnancy. In addition to helping to prevent stretch marks from appearing, Bio-Oil also reduces itching.

To be most effective, Bio-Oil should be applied twice a day for at least three months. The skin should be massaged in circular motions, especially where stretch marks appear most often. Treat yourself to this pampering morning and evening, thinking that the sooner you start the better.

Thing contains Bio-Oil

As we have mentioned, Bio-Oil is made up of 14 different natural oils. Here is in detail what it contains:

  • 3 base oils: have large amounts of essential fatty acids with an important antioxidant effect. Their task is to improve the structure of the skin making it soft and smooth. They are soy, sunflower and safflower oils.
  • 3 superfood oils: pomegranate, chia and inca inchi are very nourishing and have an important fighting action against free radicals, responsible for skin aging. These ingredients keep the skin supple, reducing dryness.
  • 8 skin-affine oils: the mix of jojoba, rosehip, wheat germ, lavender, chamomile, patchouli, rosemary and calendula nourishes the skin without greasing. In addition, it prevents its aging and reduces inflammation.

Scientific studies on Bio-Oil

The effectiveness of the product is also certified by various scientific researches. Regarding stretch marks, we report data from the proDERM study, conducted in Hamburg, Germany, last year. After 8 weeks of using Bio-Oil, 97% of people who tried it reported an improvement in their stretch marks.

Furthermore, in 50% of cases, the color of the streaks decreased, while in 61,3% the stiffness of the skin affected by stretch marks was reduced. Finally, in 60% of the subjects there was a general improvement of the skin on which stretch marks had appeared.

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