Stretch marks are irregular areas of skin that look like bands, stripes, or lines. Most of us have them! They are very common and can be located on the breasts, hips, thighs, buttocks, abdomen, and flank. You might hear pregnant women complaining about them. These indentations can appear when there is rapid stretching of the skin.
You might wonder if those stretch marks and loose skin you are trying to treat at home will ever go away. Although they don’t cause any harm or pain, they can affect your body confidence. If you want an effective solution, then we can help you achieve better results. We can help lessen their appearance with our services, including microneedling, fibroblast and laser therapy.
Stretch marks come in different colors and sizes. They are often categorized by cause and duration.
Stretch mark symptoms may include:
Early or new stretch marks. is classified as the acute stage of stretch marks which presents the earliest physical indications of overstretched skin.he epidermis typically flattens (due to gradual atrophy / degeneration) and experiences a loss of rete ridges. Collagen fibres thicken and become more densely packed, arranging themselves in a more perpendicular or parallel pattern. The number of elastic fibres also decreases.
Signs of inflammation due to overstretching are most apparent at this stage and the affected skin turns pink / red or violaceous in colour. Markings may appear flat but can sometimes be slightly raised too. Formations gradually increase in both length and width. At this stage, stretch marks can also become pruritic (itchy) but are predominantly asymptomatic.
Older stretch marks. Striae albae is classified as the more chronic (or mature) stage of stretch mark formation. Here stretch marks become more scar-like, irregularly shaped and hypopigmented (faded / white – losing vascular alterations). Some may even develop a fine wrinkly texture. Progression from striae rubrae to striae albae is gradual and can take several months to years. Mature stretch marks may also become more prominent as a person naturally loses skin elasticity through the process of aging.
Pregnancy stretch marks. Striae gravidarum are classified as secondary to striae distensae and develop as a result of pregnancy. These types of stretch marks are most prominent on the abdomen, breast and thigh areas of a pregnant woman, typically occurring around the 6th or 7th month of gestation but can also occur as early as 24 weeks.
A pregnant woman may also note stretch mark formations around her lower back area, upper arms, hips and buttocks. These stretch marks begin as striae rubrae and evolve into linear hypopigmented depressions, often with fine wrinkles.
A reduction in or weakening of elastin fibres and fibrillin microfibrils (a glycoprotein) in the dermis is mostly attributed to the physical and hormonal changes experienced during pregnancy. This may account for the change in the display pattern of stretch marks in pregnant women – which have a more parallel pattern (often developing side-by-side) rather than perpendicular alignment.
Stretch marks acquired during pregnancy do tend to fade, becoming more mature within a year or two (postpartum). For the most part, stretch marks do not disappear completely.
Stretch marks, just like any other scar, may be hard to get rid of altogether. It depends on your health, age, and how long you’ve had the stretch marks. Addressing your stretch marks when they first appear yields the best results. However, there are treatments to make them less noticeable. While home remedies like creams, gels, and medications can help, it may not help enough.
In office procedures performed by dermatologists and healthcare professionals are used for all types of stretch marks, and oftentimes they might be combined to achieve optimal results. These include, but are not limited to,
Let us help you feel your best! We can lessen the appearance of stretch marks and tighten any loose skin with our in-office cosmetic procedures. These are non-invasive, safe, and effective services including laser therapy, fibroblast, and PRP therapy. If you want to learn more about how we can address your needs, book a consultation today with a healthcare professional at our location in Tustin.