Written for Stretchmarks1 by Michelle Alford
Laser surgery has proven to be the most successful treatment for stretch marks, but not everyone is prepared to spend hundreds of dollars on stretch mark removal. Many natural remedies have shown to help lessen the appearance of stretch marks, both as preventative measures and as treatments.
The best method of naturally preventing stretch marks is eating a healthy diet and drinking plenty of water. Doctors recommend that you gain no more than 35 pounds while pregnant (25 to 35 pounds for slim women and 11 to 25 pounds for heavier woman). Stretch marks are caused by the rapid stretching of skin during pregnancy. When you eat more and gain more weight, your skin is required to stretch more, resulting in more stretch marks. Talk with your doctor about what will be the healthiest diet for your pregnancy and don't use eating for two as an excuse to overeat.
Water is essential for keeping your skin hydrated and healthy. When your skin is well hydrated, it is able to stretch more without breaking and is better able to heal any small breakages that do occur. You should drink at least 8 glasses of water every day while pregnant.
Natural Stretch Mark Remedies
Drink 8-10 glasses of water a day
Moisturize with cocoa butter or germ oil
Maintain a gentle fitness routine
Your next step is to massage cocoa butter or germ oil into your skin twice a day throughout your pregnancy. Massaging the skin increases circulation and promotes the growth of new cells, while natural moisturizers like cocoa butter and germ oil help to hydrate the skin. This will also help to prevent or ease any itchiness that your skin feels while stretching.
In addition, you should maintain a gentle fitness routine throughout your pregnancy. This will help to tighten your skin, making it more resistant to stretch marks. Try walking or jogging for 30 minutes a day, doing 20-30 leg lifts every other day, and exploring a weekly yoga class designed for pregnant women.
If despite these efforts you still develop stretch marks, don't panic! The appearance of stretch marks will naturally lessen over time and you can continue using these same methods to further diminish them.
Maintaining a healthy diet and fitness routine after pregnancy will help you lose weight at a natural pace that allows your skin time to contract. Using a crash diet as an attempt to quickly lose your pregnancy weight will only make you more likely to develop stretch marks.
Drinking lots of water and continuing to moisturize and massage your skin will keep your skin healthy and promote healing. Keep in mind that, even if you can now return to your pre-pregnancy caffeine consumption, caffeinated drinks dry out your skin and may disrupt the healing process.
If after several months, you haven't achieved the results you want, you can pursue stronger treatments, but natural stretch mark remedies are a great place to start for any stretch mark treatment.
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Photo: Brew Brooks