20 May 2022 | 4 min Read
Author | 328 Articles
Hormonal changes bring about a lot of changes to a woman’s body during pregnancy. Pregnancy affects your skin as well. While some pregnant women face skin discolouration, most pregnant women are likely to get stretch marks too.
If you are pregnant and facing the same, you must be looking for natural and safe ways to remove those pregnancy stretch marks. It is common to get stretch marks after pregnancy. The good news is that you can reduce your appearance with little effort.
Read on to find out how you can reduce the appearance of stretch marks at home.
Pregnancy stretch marks occur because of the skin’s inability to catch up with the body’s growth. Collagen and elastin fibres are responsible to keep the skin taut. However, during pregnancy the collagen and elastin fibres tend to stretch and leave pinkish streaks on the body, mainly on areas like the breasts, stomach and buttocks. Almost 8 out of 10 women develop stretch marks during pregnancy.
Omega-3 fatty acids are beneficial during pregnancy and the breastfeeding stage. They help the skin stay supple.
Here are some common sources of omega-3-
Avoid stepping out in the sun during peak hours and always apply sunscreen during the day to reduce pregnancy stretch marks. The UV rays of the sun damage the skin’s collagen and elastin and hence it puts you at the risk of forming stretch marks.
Wear UV-protective clothing and let the sunscreen absorb for 30 minutes before stepping out in the sun. Do reapply after every 2 hours.
Exercising can help reduce weight and can prevent you from gaining excessive weight in the future. Additionally, it increases blood flow in the body which helps the skin to rebuild itself. A healthy weight helps reduce the risk of excessive skin stretching and hence prevent stretch marks. Consult your doctor before starting to exercise, if you had a C-section or have any other health concerns.
Vitamin D helps to have healthy skin. So you can easily get it from sun exposure. However, avoid too much sun exposure as it might make the existing stretch marks even more noticeable. You may take vitamin D supplements by consulting with a doctor.
Some food sources of vitamin D include oily fish such as salmon and sardines, egg yolks, orange juice, dairy and plant milk.
Researchers haven’t proven any specific vitamins that prevent stretch marks. But fruits and vegetables are rich in zinc, and vitamins A, C, and E which are essential nutrients needed for healthy skin. Include leafy green vegetables like spinach and kale in your diet.
Natural oils like coconut oil and avocado oil help moisturize the skin and maintain its elasticity as they help in boosting collagen. Hence, keeping the skin moisturised with these oils helps in reducing the appearance of stretch marks. Other recommended oils are rosehip seed oil and lavender oil.
Petroleum jelly helps to seal the moisture in the skin and works as a shield. Hence, keeping the skin hydrated may prevent stretch marks. Apply a moisturising cream and then layer it with petroleum jelly.
This can be done on your buttocks area using gentle circular motions. Dry brushing helps remove dead cells and can help minimise the appearance of stretch marks in the long run.
Hyaluronic acid is found in many skin care products and is a powerful ingredient that moisturises and heals the skin. It is very hydrating and thus its use can help maintain the elasticity of your skin. This may help minimise the appearance of stretch marks.
Pregnancy stretch marks are natural and there is no proven way which might make them disappear completely. However, if you are looking for some treatment, talk to a doctor about the possible clinical treatment options. Focus on having a healthy lifestyle that will keep the skin looking supple and might prevent stretch marks in future.
Cover image credit – Parents