The Causes of Stretch Marks During Pregnancy
The causes of stretch marks can be difficult to understand.
Today I just want to give you a clearer understanding of what stretch marks are and how you may be able to avoid it.
Stretch marks are the number one thing that everyone hopes they don’t get. Unfortunately, not everyone can avoid it.
Stretch marks can appear on anyone at any time. They don’t discriminate. Men, women, old, young it doesn’t matter.
What I can tell you though is that some people are more susceptible to the causes of stretch marks than others.
Later on, we will take a look at who those people are.
When I first got pregnant, stretch marks didn’t even cross my mind for a second.
In my mind, I just thought some people had them and some people didn’t.
I didn’t have any stretch marks before pregnancy at that point so I had no cause for concern.
The causes of stretch marks were not even on my radar.
What are stretch marks?
Stretch marks are lines that appear on your body. The medical term is called striae.
Pregnancy stretch marks can be referred to as striae
Stretch marks can appear on your abdomen, legs, buttocks, arms and other areas.
They generally tend to appear on the body where the most fat is stored.
Stretch marks don’t cause any discomfort but they can be unsightly and cause some women and men to feel uncomfortable.
Can you feel stretch marks forming?
Not at all.
Although some women can experience itching around the stomach area as their pregnancy progresses, generally there are no symptoms of stretch marks.
Personally, I did get the itching which was awful but it passed after a few days.
I can’t say if it made my stretch marks look any worse though.
Some people say that scratching the stretch marks can make them worse but whether that is true or not I’m not sure yet.
If you do happen to develop stretch marks during pregnancy you may not see the full extent of them until you have delivered your baby.
You may start out your pregnancy without a single stretch mark on you but that isn’t to say that it can’t happen to you.
What are the common causes of stretch marks?
Stretch marks can happen when your skin stretches a lot in a short space of time.
When your skin stretches a hormone is produced called cortisone.
It is an unbalance of this hormone that causes stretch marks to appear as your skin loses its elasticity.
Who is most at risk of getting stretch marks during pregnancy?
Those that fall into the categories below:
- People who gain or lose weight too fast
- If you got stretch marks during puberty
- Those that are young moms
- If you have a family history of stretch marks
All of these things can play a part in the causes of stretch marks.
Pregnant Women and the causes of stretch marks
Your skin stretches in order to accommodate your growing baby.
You are only pregnant for approximately 9 months so this is a fairly short period of time to expand.
When this happens it can be difficult (but not impossible) for your skin to have enough elasticity to bounce back after pregnancy.
Your skin is continuously stretching in order to accommodate your growing stomach.
Your body will be expanding much faster than your skin is stretching and that is what leads to tearing, which we call stretch marks.
There is no danger to mother and baby from having stretch marks but it can sometimes affect a mothers confidence.
As I have said before, I didn’t have any stretch marks prior to pregnancy but after I gave birth I saw the effects all over my body.
Initially, I thought they would go away on their own but they didn’t they just faded a bit over time.
I had marks on my stomach, legs, and arms. I guess you could call that all over.
A new me had been born along with my baby.
How having stretch marks can change you
When I discovered I had stretch marks and they didn’t seem to be disappearing it took a while for me to get my confidence back up.
Why didn’t I see this happening sooner?
Could I have prevented it?
It took me some time to get used to my new body. I felt that I had to dress differently so that no one could see my marks.
Over time my perception began to change. It had too otherwise I knew I could easily become depressed.
I had this beautiful baby to look after and he was my prize. I began referring to these stretch marks as my pregnancy war wounds.
I’m a bit of an introvert so although I don’t go showing off these war wounds, I definitely didn’t go around trying to hide them either.
Some women can’t even have children and I am sure they would gladly swap these war wounds for a baby of their own.
This is a new me and the causes of my stretch marks are my happy healthy baby.
Is there anything you can do to prevent Stretch Marks?
You can never fully prevent stretch marks. Although some people would have you believe you can.
I guess this is part of the reason that some people start to feel bad about themselves and their body.
They can feel as though they have neglected themselves in some way for this to happen.
The truth is that there is not a whole lot you can do about it.
Little Things That May Make A Difference
1. In your first trimester of pregnancy, make sure that you are keeping your skin, especially around your abdominal area moisturized.
This is the part of your body that will stretch the most so keep it supple.
2. Drink enough water. Dry skin is easy to crack, soft skin is not so easy.
3. Make sure you are having a well-balanced diet to keep your nutrients up.
4. Try using Bio-oil. Bio -oil is probably one of the only things that I would recommend to help with stretch marks.
I used bio-oil for a while in my first pregnancy and although I did see some slight improvement, it didn’t take away my stretch marks completely.
The thing to make yourself sure of is that although your body has changed, it doesn’t have to be a bad thing.
You can still embrace life and you are still beautiful.