If you are expecting your first baby, you’re also probably having nightmares or at least apprehensions about stretch marks! For many women stretch marks are one of the many body changes they experience during pregnancy. Just like you make peace with the weight gain, the midnight feeds and the diaper changes, accept this also as a part of having a baby. One of those repercussions of pregnancy, that you will eventually learn to work around.
But to work around them, you must know all about them. Well, here is answering a few important questions...
What are Stretch Marks?
Stretch marks happen when your body grows faster than your skin. Your skin has elastic fibres that are just under the surface of your skin. These do have a certain amount of elasticity, however there comes a point when they can stretch no more and in the end, they break resulting in stretch marks.
A woman can gain about 10-14 kilos during pregnancy and most of this weight gain happens around the abdomen, breasts and buttocks. Stretch marks therefore tend to appear in these areas.
It is healthy to gain the right amount of weight during pregnancy but it is important that you gain this weight gradually and as per the requirement. If you gain weight rapidly and too much, then the chances of stretch marks will be much higher.
Does everyone get Stretch Marks ?
About 90% of women will get stretch marks around the sixth or seventh month of pregnancy.
Some of the factors which predispose you to getting stretch marks are :
Stretch marks are genetic – so if your mother had them chances are you will also be getting them.
Women who have a fair complexion are more likely to develop pink marks whereas women who have a dark complexion may show silvery white marks.
Can I prevent getting Stretch Marks ?
Unfortunately no, but there are some things that you could focus on which could help you reduce their gravity.
There is no cream or lotion which can actually help prevent stretch marks. What your cream will do is, prevent itching. It will also help moisturize your skin and hence keep it soft and supple. Choose a vitamin E-based cream or lotion and massage it into your skin twice a day.
Eat plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables. These can help increase the collagen in the skin which is the elasticity factor.
Make sure you drink plenty of water. Water will hydrate the skin and prevent dryness.
Wear a good support bra to ensure that you breasts do not sag excessively and the weight is well supported.
Stretch marks will surely fade with time but they may always be slightly visible. Wear it as a proud badge of motherhood and don’t fret too much, if you see a few developing on your pregnant belly.
Source for banner image: everywell.com
Also read: Normal Delivery: Classical Vaginal Birth