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Pregnancy and Stretch Marks: A Few Elastic Solutions

During pregnancy, Striae gravidarium, or stretch marks, is the worst thing that can happen for a lot of women. 50-90% of all expecting mothers will get some type of visible marks during pregnancy. It can show up on the hips and thighs, breasts, and butt but is most most often found on the lower stomach area. Striae gravidarium are caused by collagen being torn apart from the skin. In the later months of gestation they can be a bright red or a darker almost purplish color.

To avoid and prevent striae gravidarium women should try to make their epidermis as flexible as possible. Drinking plenty of water daily gaurantees well hydrated skin that pulls more easily. 1000 mg of vitamin C daily is advised to fortify the immune system and maintain the epidermis at top health. Use a sunblocker when going outside to prevent skin spots and worsening marks. It is also a good idea to keep the skin hydrated and supple by putting on a moisturizing cream. Because stress can cause breakdowns in the immune system it is suggested to participate in some kind of anti-stressing activity such as stretching, aerobics, and meditation.

Striae gravidarium can appear in obese people and body builders as well. With rapid bodily changes, the skin does not have enough time to acclimate to the shifts in weight. Body builders will get them as a result of gaining muscle too rapidly. A person can also get them from applying creams and solutions that contain steroids for an extended period of time. The good news is that even if they might be darker in appearance at first, they will usually recede and become lighter and less noticeable after a few months.

While stretch marks are mostly a genetic disorder, there are several things you can do to encourage maximum pliancy of the skin. Besides attempting to lose weight (which, during pregnancy, is not recommended for the child's sake) women can encourage healthy skin by exercising frequently, even during pregnancy. Low impact and less intensive aerobic exercises are adapted activities that women can do that are healthy for mother and baby as well. Pregnant women should eat as nutritiously as possible by consuming nutritious foods, controlling carbonated beverage consumption, decreasing caffeine consumption, and staying away from alcoholic drinks and coffee. Expectant mothers should also avoid cigarettes during the entire gestation period.

Stretch marks are not harmful but can often be irritated or dry and certainly can be unsightly. They are caused when the epidermis is spread out and altered more quickly than the collagen fibers can handle it. Genes, which for some is too bad, is the key component when it comes to getting striae gravidarium. If your mother and aunt or sisters had them, there is a high risk that you will be affected by them also. Lifestyle, eating habits, and activity level are other components that cause stretch marks besides genetics.

There are a number of products out there that claim to be able to prevent and heal striae gravidarium to make them vanish and dissipate. While usually not proven to have any lasting effects, some of them may do a trivial amount of good. There are many surgical procedures, but they can be time consuming and expensive. For a number of women the only way to counter striae gravidarium is to get the assistance of a dermatologist. Commonly, because the body still has some growing or alternating still to do, this kind of surgical procedure is not recommended until later.

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