Stretch marks in pregnant women
In the appearance of stretch marks, and scientifically — «stretch marks», not so much mechanical factors are to blame, as until recently it was thought, but hormones
Causes of stretch marks in pregnancy
An imbalance of estrogen in the blood of pregnant women causes a decrease in amino acids in the cells of the dermis, from which elastin and collagen are produced. This leads to a disruption in the production of macromolecules responsible for skin elasticity. And hypersecretion (excess) of the hormone cortisol provokes the degradation of the already created elastin fibers of the skin — they become fragile and fragile.
As a result, atrophy of a small area of the dermis occurs. This is accompanied by horizontal elongation of the collagen fibers. Elastin fibers elongate, then tear and are replaced by connective tissue. This is how internal “scars” are formed in the dermis. Gradually, the site is completely switched off from the circulatory system. It is impossible to predict whether you will develop stretch marks. Even the presence or absence of stretch marks during a previous pregnancy does not guarantee that the situation will repeat this time.
To prevent stretch marks in a pregnant woman, it is necessary to keep her muscles in good shape. Do not forget the way to the fitness center — you just need to choose sports that are available to expectant mothers. Almost every club now has a program for pregnant women. Did you go to the club before you decided to become a mother? Keep practicing! You will only have to cancel aerobics at a fast pace and strength exercises. Spend at least 20 minutes a day exercising.
We fight stretch marks everywhere and always. When taking a shower, be sure to direct its jets to the hips, stomach, make circular movements. After rubbing your thighs and stomach with a terry towel, and then with your index and thumb, gently pinch the skin inch by inch until it turns red.
Be active. Even if you didn’t exercise seriously before pregnancy, now is the time to accustom yourself to regular exercise and an active lifestyle. You do not have to set records in the gym. However, long walks and swimming can be a great alternative.
The fight against stretch marks in the trimesters of pregnancy
Pregnant skin in the first trimester
The first condition is to take care of the skin, cleanse, moisturize and nourish it. In general, it is worth paying more attention and time to the body than before. Due to hormonal changes, the skin of a pregnant woman becomes more sensitive and “capricious”: many of the usual remedies no longer suit you. And it is better to select any new ones with the help of probes: apply a small amount on the forearm, on the skin area behind the ear and look at the reaction. Mandatory elements of daily body care are a scrub with natural ingredients and moisturizing milk or cream.
As mentioned above, start accustoming yourself to activity, choose the type of training that suits you and, most importantly, strive to ensure that the classes are regular. Review your diet. Eat foods rich in fiber, make sure that all the necessary vitamins and minerals are present in the diet. Avoid carbonated drinks, the gas contained in them does not contribute to the elasticity of the skin.
The second trimester is all about fighting stretch marks in a pregnant woman
The third or fourth month is a critical period. It is during this period of time that in most cases stretch marks form in a pregnant woman. Now you just need to rub a special gel or cream for the prevention of stretch marks, which strengthens the tissues of the epidermis, activates the activity of cells that produce collagen and elastin. The substances included in the formula of creams for stretch marks in pregnant women stimulate the production of elastin fibers, increase skin elasticity and thereby reduce the risk of stretch marks. At the same time, these creams intensively moisturize and soften the skin.
In addition, they increase regenerative functions: they accelerate cell division and thereby somewhat increase the regeneration of the epidermis. Thanks to this, the pink shade of “young” stretch marks, if you still have them, disappears faster. Almost all special creams successfully cope with the above obligations. Another mandatory element in the care of «pregnant» skin in the middle trimester: the use of a cream with a draining effect, which helps to avoid swelling and thus also improves skin condition.
Third trimester — we continue the prevention of stretch marks
Drink as much liquid as possible (unless your gynecologist advises you to limit your use of it). It is best if it is cranberry juice, green tea, still mineral water. Try not to drink a lot of fluids at night. Keep your salt intake to a minimum. When you are «at the finish line», food that activates digestion and excretion of toxins is preferable. For example, wholemeal bread, low-fat sour-milk products, raw vegetables (especially lettuce and cabbage), garden greens, legumes, fruits, grain bread, cereals on the water, fish, seafood, vegetable oils. Try to minimize fatty meat and poultry, high-fat cheese, smoked meats, marinades. At 38 weeks, weight usually stabilizes, and if you have gained no more than 13 kg during your entire pregnancy, it will be easier for you to return to your previous weight after childbirth.
Continue to apply daily (1-2 times) drainage and moisturizing creams. Continue to prevent stretch marks in a pregnant woman. You can use any creams containing biologically active substances: organic iodine, polysaccharides that stimulate the synthesis of hyaluronic acid and collagen in the skin. If stretch marks still appear, you need to deal with them immediately. No hardware procedures are now possible, so you have to rely only on the power of cosmetics.
Remedies for stretch marks in pregnancy
Elasticity of the skin is excellently increased by vitamin E. Products containing it should be applied to damp, clean skin of the abdomen. Wait 5 minutes, then remove everything that has not been absorbed with a napkin. The procedure should be carried out every evening for two weeks after childbirth, and then a couple of times a week. A pleasant preventive procedure is a massage with aromatic oils in combination with a contrast shower. You can try to prepare the mixture yourself: take 3 drops of lavender oil, a tablespoon of jojoba or wheat germ.
If stretch marks in a pregnant woman, as they say, are evident (that is, “on the body”), it is time to resort to hardware procedures. An effective affordable program is microdermabrasion combined with chemical peeling. A stream of aluminum oxide crystals is delivered to the skin through special pipes at high speed. The particles penetrate into the epidermis and are simultaneously sucked off using a vacuum apparatus together with keratinized skin particles. This removes the surface layers of the epidermis and smoothes the surface of the skin. Microdermabrasion sessions are complemented by chemical peeling, which not only polishes stretch marks, but also triggers the mechanism of connective tissue regeneration.
After getting rid of the keratinized layer, intensive skin restoration is carried out. Various wraps and masks are effective here, accelerating the regeneration of damaged fibers. At the same time, they increase the elasticity of the dermis, thereby preventing the appearance of new striae. A good cosmetic effect lasts at least a year. In some cases, a cardinal solution to the problem with the help of abdominoplasty is possible. That is, sagging skin on the abdomen is removed along with stretch marks. Acceptable only with a narrow area of defects. By the way, microdermabrasion can be applied as early as a month after childbirth. And here are the last two, when you finish breastfeeding your baby.
Prevention of stretch marks in pregnancy
Bring your weight back to normal, at least six months before conception. This will reduce the likelihood of stretch marks in pregnant women by almost half.
For the skin of problem areas (chest, abdomen, hips), good hydration is required. You need to drink at least 2-2.5 liters of water per day.
Every day after a shower, use any moisturizing creams, preferably with vitamins A, C, E, collagen and elastin. Be sure to use scrubs, intensive brushing, massage risk areas.
Eat more foods containing potassium — banana, pears, raisins, pomelo, dried apricots. Even to prepare for pregnancy, your body will need useful polyunsaturated acids, which are rich in vegetable oils.
We hope that the above preventive measures and remedies will protect the pregnant woman from stretch marks.
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