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As your baby grows in your belly, your belly grows with you. But that means the skin has to grow with it too. Often the skin cannot handle this and subcutaneous tears occur - also called stretch marks. These are thin, reddish-brown stripes on the skin and, to be perfectly honest, they cannot be treated. But with our tips you can keep your skin supple so that the tearing is limited. Curious how you can do that? Then read on quickly. 

What is stretch marks? 

Stretch marks - or during pregnancy also known as stretch marks - are stretch marks on the skin that can occur with rapid growth or weight gain. The subcutaneous connective tissue is pulled apart, so to speak, causing stretch marks. This often occurs on the buttocks, breasts, legs and thighs. Stretch marks are common and harmless, and remember: it's human (Gezondheidsplein, 2021)! 

Causes of stretch marks

Stretch marks are caused when you grow rapidly or gain weight, this means your skin can no longer keep up with the growth and becomes damaged as a result. This is also common in bodybuilders, children in puberty, people with Cushing's syndrome or indeed during pregnancy. Striae are also often inherited and you can often do nothing about it.

Many women experience stretch marks as ugly. Which isn't surprising, considering the first search results on the internet give you the information on how to remove them. But we want to break through this, or yes, try. Your body is going through major changes, and that can leave scars that last a lifetime. So try to see it as a story line, rather than a part of your body that you may not be able to stand (Pregnancy Portal, 2020). 

Symptoms of a stretch mark 

At first the stretch marks may start to itch, this is often the sign that your skin can no longer cope with the growth of the body. This manifests itself as thin and reddish-brown stripes on the skin. Each person differs where these stripes develop. After a while, these stripes become lighter in color, but this can take years. Unfortunately, stretch marks never disappear (Gezondheidsplein, 2021).   

Tips for a vital skin

Your body is a temple, but so is your skin. If you keep the connective tissue supple, you can reduce the chance of cracks. You can do this by alternating hot and cold water in the shower. By changing temperatures, the connective tissue becomes more flexible and can stretch better with the changes and growth of your body. Also a massage helps. So get together with your partner or go to a masseur and pamper yourself. Besides being incredibly nice and relaxing, it also helps to keep your skin optimal and vital (Pregnancy Portal, 2020). 

Your nutrition is essential 

A big culprit of stretch marks is your diet. It's important to eat enough, because these days you eat for two. But eating enough does involve eating healthy and drinking enough water. Choose green and regularly pour yourself a glass of water or tea. Drinking enough water will also ensure that connective tissues remain supple (Pregnancy Portal, 2020) 

Treatment stretch marks 

There are several creams on the market against stretch marks, but only here the effect is not yet proven. Nowadays, through laser therapy you can treat the stretch marks, but never completely cure them. We just want to let you know that there is an option, but we hope that you can love your own body even after giving birth!

Of course, that's easier said than done. But be proud of your body, it has or it is going to put a baby on the earth. And that baby is yours! Love your little one, your partner (if any), but also yourself. You have earned that!

Sources:

Health Square. (2021, February 19). Striae. Accessed November 14, 2021, from https://www.gezondheidsplein.nl/aandoeningen/striae/item40209

Pregnancy Portal. (2020). Stretch marks and stretch marks. Accessed November 14, 2021, from https://www.zwangerenportaal.nl/zwanger/kwaaltjes-en-klachten/striae-en-zwangerschapsstriemen

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