- Stretch marks appear during and after pregnancy
- Weight loss and weight gain can also cause stretch marks
- It usually disappears after pregnancy
- But some may remain, but it faded appearance
- Olive, oil or castor oil can be used to reduce the effect of stretch marks
Stretch marks or StriaeDistansae (SD) usually appear during pregnancy. As the baby inside grows stage by stage, the mother’s body undergoes required changes and stretch marks are a part of it. When the skin gets stretched due to the growing belly and the pelvic region, stretch marks appear.
Though the stretch marks are a part of a beautiful phase in a woman’s life, it generally causes a physical and mental impact on the mother. The mother may become over conscious about beauty and the appearance of stretch marks.
Basically, there are two forms of stretch marks: the acute and chronic types. The acute stage of stretch marks medically known as striaerubrae is characterized by redness of the skin and stretched flat or slightly raised above the skin lesions which appear perpendicular to the direction of skin tension.
The chronic stage or striaealbae is the condition of faded stretch marks that appear inactive or atrophic and wrinkled. Not only to the outside, but stretch marks also causes some changes in the inner physical system including blood circulation which results in the redness.
According to a research conducted by scholars from the University of Manchester and published in 2015 October, stretch marks are the most common in areas like abdomen, breasts, buttocks, and thighs. It usually appears during pregnancy but sudden weight gain or loss in others can also cause stretch marks.
The same research which studied the application of topical products to reduce the effect of stretch marks and found out that most of the commercial products try to stimulate collagen production there by improving the skin conditions.
The study also revealed that 50 percent of people who used bio-oils to manage stretch marks have found it effective and improving the appearance. Apart from it, cocoa butter cream has also been found to be effective in managing stretch marks. As per the research the topical products that claim to be effective in reducing stretch marks generally focus on following factors:
- Stimulate collagen production
- Increase skin elasticity
- Improve cell proliferation
- Anti-inflammatory properties
- Rehydration of the skin
Based on the above factors and existing researches, here are a few tips to reduce the effects of stretch marks.
- Olive oil
Warm the oil lightly and massage it on the stretch marks. Let it remain on the skin for some time, and there is no need to wash it off. Apply twice daily.
- Cocoa butter
Massage cocoa butter to the skin during the night and let it remain throughout. Daily usage during and after pregnancy helps disappear stretch marks to an extent.
- Castor oil
You can either apply castor oil daily on the skin or mix it with some beaten egg yolk, lemon juice, oat meal and almond paste. The moisture can be prepared for some days and apply on the skin. It heals the stretch marks and nourishes the skin.
- Aloe Vera
Apply Aloe Vera gel on the skin and let it remain for 20 to 30 minutes. Wash it off with lukewarm water. It reduces the itching and the Inflammation at the sites of striae.
- Turmeric powder
Freshly powdered mixed with natural honey when applied to the red and inflamed areas of stretch marks helps reduce the itching and discomfort.
All the above tips to reduce or tackle stretch marks are to be used before the development of fully dark striae, as it gets re darker the more time it takes to regress.
Apart from the above-said home remedies, there are treatments like laser surgery available to remove the stretch marks. But consult a dermatologist before taking decisions on it and plan accordingly.