Also called as striae, striae distensae, striae atrophicans and striae gravidarum; stretch marks are scars of long narrow streaks or stripes developed on the skin when the skin is suddenly stretched in cases of pregnancy, weight gain, weight loss or puberty and cannot resume to normal form. The most common areas where stretch marks occur are abdomen, breasts, hips, flank, buttocks and thighs.
Although stretch marks are common and do not pose long term risks but they deter a person’s self image and induce anxiety.
Signs that you might incur stretch marks
The skin tends to become thin and pink, irritated and itchy before stretch marks actually appear. The scars develop in appearances of wrinkle and raised streaks. These raised streaks are red, purple, pink, reddish-brown varying from person to person depending on the melanin content of their skin. They are not initially visible but after some years they become prominent.
Causes of stretch marks
• Pregnancy is the most common reason for stretch marks. Almost 90% women experience stretch marks during childbirth.
• Instant weight gain in a very short period of time.
• Certain medical conditions like Marfan syndrome and Cushing’s syndrome can also lead to stretch marks mainly because of lost of elasticity in the skin tissues and hormonal imbalance.
• Puberty or rapid growth in your teens can also lead to stretch marks.
• Using Corticosteroids in forms of creams, lotions can reduce the level of collagen important for strengthening and supporting the skin.
Foods that help in fading those stretch marks
Natural substances can help you in fading those stretch marks without involving yourself in expensive laser treatments. These include:
• Green tea
• Vegetables like broccoli, cucumbers and bell pepper
• Fruits like orange, tomato and blueberries
Preventing those stretches
• Consume a healthy and balanced diet.
• Take care that you gain weight slowly and gradually.
• Eating healthy vitamins like vitamin A and vitamin C and minerals like zinc and silicon