What are Stretch Marks?
A stretch mark is considered a type of scar that develops because of stretching or shrinking of skin extremely fast in a brief period of time. This sudden change causes those elements that provide skin support including collagen and elastin to rupture and become disarray, which is the same mechanism as development of a scar.
Stretch Marks Treatment, Walnut Creek, CA
What is a stretch mark?
A stretch mark is considered a type of scar that develops because of stretching or shrinking of skin extremely fast in a brief period of time. This sudden change causes those elements that provide skin support including collagen and elastin to rupture and become disarray, which is the same mechanism as development of a scar. Stretch marks do not always look alike in different areas of the body or in different people. Depending on the skin type, pigmentation, and site of the stretch marks they can vary in size. Most often they appear as pink, red, or purple and the coloring gradually fade away over time.
Anyone can develop stretch marks, but some people are at higher risk of developing stretch marks, those include:
What else can cause stretch marks?
There are several medical causes of stretch mark, more common causes include:
How can I prevent stretch marks?
There are many myths about what can and cannot prevent stretch marks. Research shows that most topical remedies such as almond oil, coconut butter, vitamin E, olive oil and so on do not work.
Home remedies that have shown some promise in preventing stretch marks include hyaluronic acid and Centella (an herb). Researchers have noted that if any prevention is going to work it must be started early, consistent in application, and you must take your time to gently massage the productive into your skin.
How to get rid of stretch marks:
Topical over-the-counter medications that can be used at home:
As mentioned above most home remedies have proven ineffective. Two agents that have shown some promise in fading stretch marks include retinol and hyaluronic acid. Be warned that tretinoin and its derivatives including retinal are contraindicated to be used during pregnancy or breast-feeding.
Procedures that are used by professionals:
No one procedure or treatment has shown to be 100% effective in the treatment of stretch marks. To obtain the best results your doctor may use a combination of treatments that based on their evaluation best fits your needs and skin type. This includes an initial evaluation of other medical causes of stretch marks.
Professional skincare providers can use different procedures and agents to make stretch marks less obvious. These procedures can include:
When to seek expert opinion:
If you are stretch marks cause you to be self-conscious or produce an anxiety, or if the cost of over-the-counter treatments are becoming too expensive it is time to seek professional advice. Cosmetic procedures combine with application of agents that can improve stretch marks at the same time have proven much more effective than the over-the-counter remedies including creams, gels, and lotions.
Schedule a Consultation
If you’re interested in learning more about Stretch Marks please contact us for a consultation at (415) 644-8301 or fill out our contact us form here. We will discuss your needs and concerns, and determine your best course of action.