As your belly grows throughout your pregnancy, stretch marks become more noticeable. These marks appear as indented, discolored streaks across your skin, most often on your abdomen and hips as the baby gets bigger.
Stretch marks are the result of the sudden stretching of your skin, which breaks the tissue fibers, but doesn’t pose any harm to your health. Though you may not be able to avoid stretch marks entirely, there are things you can do to minimize your risk.
Experienced OB/GYN, Derakhsh Fozouni, MD, understands how stretch marks can affect your satisfaction with your appearance. He offers the following guidance for reducing your stretch mark risks throughout your pregnancy.
Keep drinking water
When you drink sufficient amounts of water each day, you keep your skin hydrated and soft. Stretch marks are more common in skin that’s dry and less elastic, so it’s important to get hydrated every day with plain water.
You should also avoid drinks that contain caffeine, as they may increase your risk for stretch marks and aren’t the healthiest beverage options during pregnancy.
In addition to nourishing your skin from the inside, you can also use a high-quality moisturizer that keeps your skin soft and healthy.
You don’t have to invest in expensive products claiming stretch mark miracles. Simply applying cocoa butter or other moisturizing creams to your belly, thighs, and the surrounding areas every day can prevent stretch marks and keep your skin young-looking.
Pay attention to weight gain
Pregnancy isn’t a free-for-all when it comes to eating. Though you can expect to gain weight as your baby develops, Dr. Fozouni can determine a healthy weight range in which you should stay as your pregnancy progresses.
Gaining too much weight may not be safe for you or your baby and will likely increase your risk for noticeable stretch marks. Stick with a healthy diet and appropriate exercises to stay fit and firm throughout your pregnancy.
Supplement your skin from the inside
Healthy skin is the result of collagen, a natural-occurring substance in your body, which keeps skin firm and elastic.
To keep a healthy supply of collagen, you need to each a nutritious diet and get enough vitamin C in your diet, as it’s important for boosting your own production of collagen. Vitamin C is found in many vegetables and fruits, which are also part of a healthy diet.
Vitamin D is also important for reducing stretch mark risks. You get vitamin D naturally from spending time in the sun or from dairy products and supplements.
Solutions for existing stretch marks
If you still develop stretch marks that leave you unhappy with your physical appearance, Dr. Fozouni offers several in-office solutions that can significantly reduce their visibility. He uses the advanced technology of the Icon™ laser to treat stretch marks and improve the overall health of your skin.
The Icon system uses advanced fractional laser and pulsed light energy to stimulate the production of new, healthy collagen to fill in the dimples and creases of stretch marks. The heat from the laser penetrates the deepest layers of your skin tissue to boost your body’s natural collagen production.
This noninvasive, nonsurgical treatment option can address stretch marks on your skin that remain after childbirth. The technology is safe and effective for most areas of your body and treatments can take less than 30 minutes.
To learn more about your options for preventing new stretch marks and treating old ones, schedule a consultation with Dr. Fozouni today by phone or by using the online booking system now.