Stretch marks are normally purple, pink, red, or gray lines seen in your skin. The marks might feel itchy, and they generally appear when there is a rapid weight change. While the marks are not dangerous, they can be very conspicuous, causing embarrassment. These zebra-like stripes on skin can appear anywhere you gain weight; however, the most common places are legs, stomach, breasts, arms, and buttocks due to skin distension. Can you get rid of stretch marks? Yes, getting rid of the markings does not need to be difficult or painful. Learning how to get rid of stretch marks can help you look better and feel better about your body.
Causes, Symptoms, and Prevention
Stretch marks are caused by the stretching of skin. When the skin swells more quickly than normal, blood vessels beneath the skin burst, leaving the bright colors and lines under the skin. When the skin is overly stretched, usually due to rapid weight gain, an overload of cortisone begins to be produced in your body. These marks commonly appear in women who are pregnant and teenagers who are growing. Adrenal gland disorders, such as Cushing’s syndrome, Marfan syndrome, Ehlers-Danlos syndrome, and corticosteroid creams can cause said marks without any rapid weight or growth change. Some people may be more likely to get marks from stretched skin based on their medical history. The symptoms of the marks are easy to identify as one can simply look at the skin and see that there are red or purple marks on the skin. This is the only effect stretch marks have, and they do not threaten your health in any way.
Are stretch marks preventable? There is no method that is 100% reliable as any time the skin stretches rapidly will be a risky situation. However, preventing stretch marks during pregnancy may be easier than you think. Knowing how to prevent stretch marks and acting on it will help you later on when you want to know how to get rid of stretch marks and restore your skin to its former state.
First of all, keep your skin hydrated. When your skin stays hydrated, it will be more elastic, meaning it can grow without leaving as many marks. Additionally, you need to keep the collagen and elastin fibers strong so that they will be less likely to break. To make these strong, you need to eat foods that contain Vitamin E, Vitamin C, zinc, and silica. By eating foods containing these components, you will be less likely to have tissue damage. Also, drink more water than you might normally. You should try to drink two liters of water a day.
Exercise will also help your skin have better circulation. The exercise does not need to be difficult. Riding your bike or taking a walk will help you. Any kind of exercise that gets you moving is better than none. You can help prevent those pregnancy marks by picking an oil that is specially designed to hydrate your skin. Apply it from your first trimester of pregnancy, before stretch marks begin to make an appearance. You can have stomach stretch marks or breast stretch marks as a result of pregnancy.
If you want to prevent markings after weight loss, you can control yourself more, whereas during pregnancy, your body will continue growing whether you like it or not. If you are trying to lose weight, change your body slowly. Do not try to drop forty pounds per month. Aim to lose about one to two pounds a week. Putting yourself on a radical diet can cause you to become discouraged after a short time on the diet and then re-gain the weight back. “Yo-yo” dieting will only serve to multiply your likelihood of having stretched skin. Keep giving yourself all the vitamins you need. Exercise more and eat more healthily. Do not simply stop eating or try to eat less. Using this method will help prevent you from having stretch marks in the first place.
These methods on how to avoid stretch marks during pregnancy or severe weight loss will not completely prevent the markings. However, following the above methods will make you less likely to experience them.
Treatment For Stripes On Skin.
Do stretch marks go away? Many medical sources caution that no treatment method is 100% effective. They also discuss the fact that the marks are not dangerous. There is no medical consequence of having them. However, they can be uncomfortable (if they are producing extreme itchiness), and you may not like how they look. If you use the prevention methods mentioned above, you will be much less likely to have stretch marks. If you do have some, the markings may be smaller and infect a smaller area. You can try using medical treatments or you can try more natural remedies for stretch marks.
Various stretch mark removal cream can be used to bring elasticity back to the skin, addressing stretch marks on buttocks and other affected locations. These creams (Bio-Oil, tretinoin cream, or retinoid cream) can help hydrate your skin. If you were using a cream while you were pregnant, you can continue to use the same cream. Tretinoin cream is only recommended for non-pregnant individuals, so do not use it if you are pregnant. However, afterward, you can use it for quicker results on your stretch marks after pregnancy. Some of these creams and lotions simply fade the lines a bit, while others are more forward in taking action. Lotion for stretch marks is varied in its success, but it is always more successful when the marks are still red or purple.
You can try camouflage. This step does not in any way make the stretch marks disappear. However, it can help you feel more comfortable about yourself. Camouflage simply means that you cover up the stretch marks. You can do this with waterproof makeup, so that the makeup will stay in place, covering the marks for up to two or three days at a time.
Another option is to have stretch mark removal surgery. This surgery, once again, is for purely aesthetic purposes as the stretch marks are doing your body no harm. This surgery, called abdominoplasty, is expensive and holds some risk. Read through these risks before you decide to go ahead with the surgery.
First of all, the stretch mark surgery can cost many thousands of dollars, so consider that as you are looking at you options on how to get rid of stretch marks on thighs, stomach, or buttocks. Second of all, you may be required to stay in the hospital a few days. After that, you would need to be cautious about your movements, perhaps not working and exercising for up to six weeks, as recommended by your doctor. The surgery consists of basically pulling out the extra skin in your stomach area and sewing the leftover skin back together. You can opt to have a partial tummy tuck or a full tummy tuck, depending on the seriousness of your situation.
Once you reach the recovery state, you will need to wear a corset-like garment to encourage your stomach to heal. You may experience these side effects along with a long scar under your belly button:
- Difficulty standing up straight (this should improve over time)
- Raised, red scars for a few weeks
- Numbness on your stomach
- Pain and bruises
- Temporary fluid swelling above your scar
While there is no danger of something as serious as dying during the surgery, you may experience other side effects that leave your stomach perhaps more scarred than before. You may experience something referred to as “dog ears”. This is basically where a bit of skin overhangs the corners of the surgery area. A collection of fluid or blood can be found underneath the skin. You may have cramps or pain in the stomach even after a few weeks have passed.
You should take into consideration all of these risks when deciding whether or not to have a surgery done. All surgeries do have the risk of excessive bleeding or infection. Making this decision is completely up to you, and trying other methods of removing the marks first is recommended.
The last medical treatment available is laser treatment for stretch marks. Pulsed laser therapy is the recommended treatment when the marks are still in the red or purple state. The therapy is highly effective at reducing the redness and stopping some of the inflammation. Consult your physician before trying this method.
Knowing how to get rid of old stretch marks will mean that your doctor is a professional in the areal. A type of laser therapy called fractional laser therapy would be used. Along the stretch mark lines, the doctor will create small damages or injuries. This will cause the skin cells to be active(but will not give you excessive pain). The skin cells will then repair the area and cause new skin growth. This new skin will cause the markings to be virtually impossible to see. Laser surgeries to not cause a lot of pain. There may be some discomfort associated with the strange feelings on the skin. However, the results are usually positive. Depending on the laser surgery and the state of your stretch marks on your skin, you may need multiple treatments. If you have fair skin and shallower marks, the laser surgery is more likely to be successful.
Last of all, a method called microdermabrasion can be used to treat white or purple stretch marks. The device used will gently blow crystals onto your skin. This means that your top layer of skin (very thin) will be removed. As a result, your skin will grow a new, clean, and elastic-like layer to help cover your stretch marks.
List Of Natural Home Remedies For Stretch Marks
Putting aside the medical methods of treatment, home remedies for stretch marks can also be quite helpful. The natural treatments can be used for stretch marks on legs, buttocks, arms, or tummy. One way of how to remove stretch marks naturally is to have a massage- the more regular, the better. Just as exercise gets your blood flowing, so does a massage. The improved blood circulation will reduce the amount of toxins in your body. Additionally, you can rub Vitamin E (usually in an oil format) into the areas with markings and massage the areas carefully. Having massages and exercising will both promote your blood circulation.
Some foods can help rejuvenate your skin. Egg whites can be applied three times a day to affected areas. Allow the egg whites to dry on your skin before gently washing them off. You can then apply a little oil to keep the skin from becoming dried out. Potato juice will help your skin cells be restored. You can use this method by dividing a potato in half and rubbing the exposed inside onto your stretch marks. Try this method regularly to see results. Additionally, Lemon juice serves to bleach out the red or purple lines. When you apply the lemon juice, you should let it sit for ten minutes before washing it off.
Aloe vera is known for its skin cell restoration and effective way of how to get rid of stretch marks fast. You can apply this daily, and it will work to repair any damaged skin and produce new skin cells. Raw sugar and a bit of oil mixed together can create a mixture that is perfect for exfoliating your skin. Rub it in before you shower, let it sit for a short time, then shower to rinse it away. This will help fade the marks, and it will make you smell sweet. Next, apricots are said to help your skin. Mash them up and spread them over your purple or white stretch marks.
Alfalfa is another natural remedy for the affected areas. While known for its ability to assist with weight loss, it can also help with stretch marks after weight loss. Vitamin E, as mentioned above, reduces the amount of collagen damage. Vitamin K helps with your blood clotting. Because alfalfa contains these two vitamins, it can help restore your skin to its former state. Mix a teaspoon of alfalfa and four drops of chamomile oil. Apply and let it sit for fifteen minutes, then remove gently with water.
Last of all, cocoa and shea butter can have an effect on these areas; this is because they contain both Vitamin A and antioxidants. Mix even amounts of cocoa butter and shea butter together and melt. Add a few drops of Vitamin E oil. Thoroughly combine the oil with the melted butters. Once you are satisfied with the mixture, put in a container and let it chill in the refrigerator. After it cools down, you will be more able to apply the mixture.
Knowing how to get rid of pregnancy stretch marks and weight loss stretch marks can help you take any proactive steps possible. You do not need to wait until the marks are highly visible to begin applying creams and keeping up your blood flow through exercise. You can do those at the beginning of your pregnancy to reduce the probability of having so many marks later on. Secondly, you should be regular about any home remedy or lotion that you use. Remember that results are not 100% guaranteed but are more likely if you treat yourself regularly.