Thursday, August 23, 2012

The Stretch Mark Down Low

What Are Stretch Marks
         The dermis is the inner layer of skin below the epidermis, which is the actual portion of the skin we can see and touch. It’s the splitting and lack of internal support to the dermis layer that causes stretch marks and influences how the epidermis physically looks. Stretch marks can be pink, red, purple, or brown fading into white or silver lines and often appear in the areas where fat accumulates such as the stomach, buttocks, thighs and breasts. 

What Causes Stretch Marks
         Stretch marks are commonly associated with rapid weight gain, hormones, and specific conditions and diseases. Rapid weight gain, such as in the case of pregnancy, causes the skin to stretch to accommodate the larger amount of fat formed. Changes in hormones or hormone fluctuations cause stretch marks by preventing the formation of collagen and elastin fibers that helps keep the skin firm. Collagen and elastic fibers are what help give the dermis layer the necessary support to prevent it from tearing and stretching; therefore when sufficient collagen and elastic fibers are formed or produced, this prevents the superficial manifestation of stretch marks on the epidermis layer. Some diseases such as Cushing syndrome can cause stretch marks. Cushing syndrome is due to abnormal levels of cortisol, a hormone within our blood. The high level of cortisol causes an imbalance the hormonal system therefore influencing the likelihood of gaining weight and forming stretch marks.
If You Don’t Have Stretch Marks-Preventative Ideas
         For pregnant women, applying creams that contain Vitamin E, applying a skin firming lotion, or plainly keeping the skin moisturized will help reduce the chances of stretch marks. Other preventative ideas include maintaining a healthy weight, drinking lots of water, exercising regularly, and eating a well balanced diet. Avoid drinking too many caffeinated drinks, alcohol and smoking.

If You Have Stretch Marks-Improvement Treatments To Save
         For those who don’t have the funds to spend on expensive treatments, think moisturizers and creams that contain Vitamin E or cocoa butter. For Vitamin E, think capsules or oils that you can massage directly onto your stretch marks. Cocoa butter is also thought to help keep the skin moisturized. Whatever your treatment, make sure you are applying your treatment at least 3-4 times a day.

If you Have Stretch Marks-Improvement Treatments To Splurge
         Besides applying creams to prohibit the formation of further stretch marks, there are alternative treatments to improving the look of current and pre-existing stretch marks. New age technology such as laser treatments, glycolic acid and dermabrasian help enrich the look of the skin. Laser treatments such as pulsed dye laser therapy modifies the dermis layer by influencing the increased development of collagen and elastin fibers. The alpha hydroxy acid, glycolic acid, exfoliates the skin to remove the topmost layer of skin. Microdermabrasian, similar to glycolic acid, is a form of improvement treatment that gently scrapes the skin with crystals to remove the uppermost layer of skin.

In addition to the improvement treatments, it is also smart to integrate the "preventative ideas" previously mentioned, not just to improve and prevent the formation of stretch makrs but also to improve your way of life and healthy living.

No comments:

Post a Comment