The appearance of your skin is influenced by numerous factors. These range from the natural aging process to the amount of sun exposure your skin receives, and how you grow. At Aglow Dermatology in NYC, Dr. Dina Strachan offers a comprehensive menu of services that are proven to improve the health and appearance of the skin.
What are Stretch Marks?
Stretch marks are actually scars. They develop as a result of exaggerated stretching of the skin at an accelerated pace. When the skin stretches too quickly, the collagen and elastin strands that make up the skin can rupture. The rupture heals, but as a scar that may look red or pink at first. Over time, as the scar rests just below the surface of the skin, stretch marks may lighten to be barely noticeable in terms of color. Their texture may be what you notice the most.
Can I Prevent Stretch Marks?
If you're prone to stretch marks, which you can know by looking at other family members, you may wonder if there are steps you can take to prevent these tiny scars from appearing on your skin. This question is especially common for women who are trying to conceive or who are pregnant. While there is no hard-and-fast strategy that is proven to prevent stretch marks, there are a few you can try. At the very least, they can support your skin and may lessen the severity of stretch marks if they do occur. Tips include:
- Maintaining optimal skin moisture through appropriate creams and lotions.
- Staying well hydrated by drinking at least 64 ounces of water a day.
- Limit products and activities that lead to dry skin, such as hot showers or heavy caffeine consumption.
- Take a vitamin C supplement or eat a diet rich in vitamin C (think C for citrus!). This can support collagen production.
- Talk to your dermatologist at the first sight of stretch marks.
Is there Anything I Can Do to Treat Stretch Marks at Home?
If you're not in any hurry to eliminate frustrating stretch marks from your skin, you might try one or a few of the home remedies that are found online. These approaches may be most effective for very new stretch marks and, even then, they may be only minimally successful. They can be convenient but also messy and time-consuming. Suggestions include:
- Apply cocoa butter to the skin
- Apply aloe vera gel
- Apply castor oil
How Does a Dermatologist Remove Stretch Marks?
Dr. Strachan has equipped our dermatology office with treatments and technologies that have performed remarkably well in clinical trials. There are several options, ranging from prescription medication used topically to laser treatments, chemical peels, and RF microneedling. Professional stretch mark treatments work in part by breaking up the scar tissue with powerful energies and micro-injuries, paving the way for the body to remodel the skin with healthy new collagen.