Stretch Marks. For many of us, they are a rite of passage, the tiger stripes that we earned while carrying our precious babies for nine months. Many moms wear them with pride, and let them tell the story of our journey into motherhood. However, that is not to say that stretch marks are enjoyable. Most of us would prefer to prevent them and just never have to deal with them at all in the first place. While pregnancy stretch marks normally develop on the stomach and hips, they can develop on the chest, back, and bottom as well. If you are interested in learning how to prevent stretch marks, or at least try to prevent them as much as possible, read on for the best tips!
The easiest way to prevent stretch marks is to prevent the skin from stretching in the first place. This is pretty difficult to do when you are pregnant, so maintaining a healthy weight during pregnancy is important. It’s not the actual weight gain that causes stretch marks, but the rapid weight gain that sometimes can come along with pregnancy. So, if you can try to gain weight at a slower, more steady pace, it can help to prevent stretch marks. This is sometimes much easier said that done, however. Eating a healthy diet, trying not to binge on unhealthy foods during pregnancy, and getting plenty of exercise during pregnancy is one of the best ways to help prevent rapid weight gain, and in turn, stretch marks.
Staying hydrated is another great way to try to prevent stretch marks. Many women don’t realize that something as simple as drinking water can be one of the key ways to making sure you don’t get stretch marks during pregnancy. The reasons are pretty darn simple, actually. Hydrated, soft skin doesn’t develop stretch marks as much as dry skin does, and doctors usually recommend women drink around 80-120 ounces of water per day. PS: That means JUST water! Caffeinated beverages like coffee, tea and soda can actually make it more likely for a woman to develop stretch marks, so stick to just plain old water.
Eating a healthy diet is super important when it comes to preventing stretch marks, and not just to prevent weight gain. The vitamins and minerals that come from eating healthy foods can help to prevent stretch marks, and nutritional deficiencies can make it much more likely for a woman to get stretch marks.
For example, collagen, which is found in foods that are high in vitamin C, can give skin a more stretchy, elastic quality which can prevent stretch marks. Studies have also proven that low levels of Vitamin D can lead to stretch marks, so get out there and soak up some sun to prevent stretch marks. (You can also obtain Vitamin D from lots of healthy fruits and veggies, so don’t worry, the sun is not your only option! As for other vitamins and nutrients that can help with stretch marks, zinc is a good option, as it is an important nutrient for skin health as a whole. It’s estimated that between 50 and 90 percent of women will see stretch marks during their pregnancy, so take heart, you are not alone if you do happen to notice them while your baby is baking! The influx of hormones during pregnancy can make the skin more prone to tearing and stretch marks. Many women swear by various products like cocoa butter or Bio Oil to help to prevent stretch marks, but studies show that these things don’t always help too much. The best possible option is to try to gain weight slowly and steadily, and that can help to keep those tiger stripes at bay!
If you have already developed stretch marks during your pregnancy or a previous pregnancy, you might need to think about seeing a doctor if you want to have them treated. However, many women simply deal with their stretch marks, and in a few years time, they will fade to white, and will not be very noticeable. However, if you must do something about your stretch marks, sometimes doctors can do laser treatment to get rid of them, or prescribe you with a retinoid cream to help them to fade away. The great news is that stretch marks are completely normal, extremely common, and not dangerous at all, so if you do get them during pregnancy, they truly are nothing to worry about. Embrace those tiger stripes ladies, you earned them! They are nothing to be ashamed of, that is for sure!