Stretch marks during pregnancy are a common problem for many women; however, they do not happen for all. Between 75 and 90 percent of all pregnancies will develop stretch marks so they are not uncommon. The good news is that there are ways to prevent them from occurring at all.
Why you get stretch marks during pregnancy
Stretch marks occur for one reason – your skin has stretched. They are usually linked to pregnancy but those who put on a lot of weight quickly will also gain them. It is due to the fibers in the skin breaking down. The body produces less corticosteroid during pregnancy, which is why so many women will gain these marks.
They will usually appear as red or purple at first and then fade to a silver or white color, and often appear on the stomach, hips and thighs.
Because of this, it means more women cover up their bodies rather than showing them off – even after using creams to help remove them because their self-image of their body is still there.
Avoid stretch marks during pregnancy
The best way to avoid getting the marks is by adding more vitamins and minerals to your body. To add them directly to your skin, you will need to massage them in from the use of creams and essential oils. Consider vitamin E, C and using zinc. You should also keep eating healthily. Before you use any creams, read the label and consult your doctor if you are worried about it harming your baby.
Vitamin A is another popular option to help keep the skin stretchy. However, you will need to look into the types of vitamin A you are eating or using in creams; there are some forms that are linked to birth defects. Talk to your doctor before you take anything or eat anything that has vitamin A in it to make sure your baby will be safe.
Drinking water will also help to keep the skin stretch. The more hydrated it is, the healthier it will be and the fewer marks will appear. Of course, being hydrated will also help with other parts of your pregnancy and with keeping a healthy diet.
Healthy eating to cut down on stretch marks during pregnancy
As stated, eating healthily will help to avoid stretch marks during pregnancy. This means eating your fruit and vegetables, as well as high protein foods. You will also need to stick to the right amount of calories to avoid putting on any extra weight, other than just the baby.
There is the saying “eating for two”, which many women will play on. However, this does not come into effect until the last three months of the pregnancy. Before this time, your body will effectively use all the calories that you eat and burn any extra that you have stored to nourish the baby.
During the last three months, you will need to eat around an extra 200 calories a day – which is just the equivalent to a slice of cheese on toast. By avoiding eating too much, you will avoid stretch marks during pregnancy.