The woman's body undergo a lot of changes during pregnancy and one of the major physical change is the appearance of stretchmarks. These long stripes that differ in hue which appears to be dirty on the stomach is commonly due to the sudden expanding of the uterus because of the growing baby. Then the collagen of the skin tends to split and that's when stretchmarks appear. These stretchmarks could also appear on the thighs, hips, breasts, lower back or upper arm. In the beginning of its appearance, it may be slightly red or purple and as time goes by or after pregnancy, it turns to be colored brown and in the long run, its color will disappear, and it could be harder to erase from your skin. So, why wait and treat stretch marks when you can prevent them from coming out instead? Here are six ways to helps prevent stretchmarks during pregnancy:
1. Drink water. Staying hydrated by drinking atleast 8 glasses of water every day would be of great help to minimize the appearance of stretchmarks. Water is a good detoxifying agent which could help in coping skin's stress. It would also be great if you eat fruits which contains a lot of water like watermelons, cucumbers, melons, strawberries, etc. You could also have a cup of tea in a day which is also a good way to keep you hydrated.
2. Take Vitamins. Eating foods that are rich in vitamins should be a habit for a stretchmark- free pregnancy. These nutrients can be found on several fruits like carrots, strawberries, spinach sweet potatoes, nuts, wallnuts, eggs and seeds. These vitamins essential for preventing stretchmarks are:Vitamin A which aids in the fixing of skin tissues; vitamin E helps the skin membrane intact; and the vitamin C in the production of collagen for regeneration and elasticity of the skin. Eating foods that are reach in omega-3 fatty acids could make your skin healthy and glowing.
3. Massage and moisturize your skin. For the skin to adjust to the growing baby, it should always be moisturized to lessen the stress that the skin is undergoing. Using over the counter moisturizing cream would be okay but it is more advisable to use natural method in keeping your skin's moisture. Using sesame oil, coconut and castor oil is a better way to moisturise naturally. Rubbing them on the stretchmark prone areas atleast twice a day will make your skin shielded from the appearance of stretchmmarks.
4. Exfoliate your skin. Removing dead skin from the upper layer of the skin makes way in the production of new cells and better blood flow. Exfoliation has been as important as moisturizng the skin during pregnancy. Here are two methods that you could choose from:
Dry Brushing. Using a soft brush, try to brush from your legs up to your heart focusing on the stretchmarks prone areas. After brushing, take a warm bath and moisturize your skin after. Remember to use soft bristle brush.
In this method, you can scrub your body while bathing in a warm water using a loofah brush which has natural bristles that remove dead and dry skin.
5. Exercise. Exercising during the last trimester of preganancy is usually advised for an easier and manageable labor and delivery. It also play its role in making the skin more elastic and keeping the oxygen breathable by allowing blood to circulate well. Exercising also helps you not gain much weight which is making stretchmarks to less appear. However, you cannot do the same routine exercise as what you usually do when you're not pregnant. There are some restrictions and you must consult your doctor if you are planning to have a pregnancy exercise.
While pregnant, you can try cardiovascular exercises like cycling, swimming and aerobics since all these can be easily done during pregnancy. Prenatal yoga could also be a good form of exercise, making sure that these exercises should not put stress on your back and stomach. Other exercises that put a strain on your back and that which requires holding breath and or carrying of weights should be avoided.
6. Treat stretchmarks when they appear. After following these methods but stretchmarks still appear, you should immediately treat them while they are still painful or are still slightly red. Apply coconut oil on affected areas regularly to lessen its appearance. You can also buy creams that have glycolid acid or retinol. Seek medical advise from your doctor to make sure that your doing things right.