How to get rid of them?
Stretch marks are something that the majority of us would experience some time in our life, especially in growing years and/or later in adulthood. People who are more likely to experience this would be pregnant women and those who experience sudden weight change.
While they are naturally occurring due to various reasons and do not affect us in the day to day, there are still ways to treat them if you prefer them gone. Before we go into treatment options, we first share more about what exactly are stretch marks and what causes them?
What are stretch marks and what causes them?
A stretch mark is a form of scarring that develops when our skin stretches too quickly. This abrupt change can cause the collagen fibre and elastin, elements that help support our skin, to rupture. This leads to loss of skin cells (atrophy) at the epidermis and scarring at the dermis, forming what we know to be stretch marks.
Some common causes and areas of stretch marks include:
- At the thighs and backs due to growth spurts that occur during puberty
- The abdomen and breast during pregnancy and/or breastfeeding
- Rapid weight loss or gain
- On the shoulders due to rapid muscle growth during weight training
However, not everyone experiences these bands and fluctuating hormones may have a part to play in their development.
During their first appearance (Striae Rubra), stretch marks may appear red, purple, pink, reddish-brown, or dark brown, depending on your skin colour. Early stretch marks may feel slightly raised and may also itch.
Over time, the colour fades (Striae Alba) and these bands sink beneath your skin and may cause slight depressions.
How to treat stretch marks?
We are not going to lie. Stretch marks are scars, which means that you will not be able to get rid of them completely, but you can get them treated so that they become less noticeable.
The three most common types of treatment options are topical cream, and injectables, and laser.
Topical creams are creams that are applied directly onto the stretch mark itself, and is the least invasive way of managing these incessant bands. The important ingredient for these creams is Tretinoin or retinoic acid, a derivative of Vitamin A.
These retinol-based creams work by exfoliating the outer layer of the skin (epidermis) and stimulating collagen production in the dermis below it. This provides a plumping effect that reduces the appearance of stretch marks, making it look more like normal skin.
Do note, however, that these creams are not safe for use during pregnancy or when breastfeeding. Please consult with your doctor before commencing any such treatment. Topical creams are also most effective for striae rubra stretch marks.
Injectables: Rejuran Healer
Stretch marks are essentially developed because of a lack of collagen, a protein which helps maintain the structure of our skin. Hence, one way to render stretch marks less visible is to restore the loss of collagen.
That is where Rejuran Healer comes in. Rejuran Healer is an injectable skin booster or healer that helps enhance tissue regeneration and wound healing. It works by increasing fibroblasts, a cell that produces elastin and collagen in the dermis, which results in more supple skin. This collagen remodeling and stimulating Rejuran will then help lighten these marks and make them less obvious.
Downtime of 2-3 days of injections bumps.
To find out more about Rejuran treatment, click here!
Fractional laser treatment is another non-invasive method that uses a device to deliver a laser beam divided into thousands of microscopic treatment zones that target a fraction of the skin at a time. This is similar to a photograph being enhanced or altered pixel by pixel.
Fractional laser treatment works by targeting both the epidermis and dermis to encourage cell growth. As the laser penetrates through deep layers of the skin called microthermal treatment zones (MTZs), the old cells are expelled and new collagen remodeling and building cells are introduced.
By using this method, the laser treats the targeted zone effectively without damaging surrounding tissues, thus resulting in a faster healing process than if all the tissue in the treatment site were exposed to the laser. This method promotes collagen remodeling and stimulating, which in turn helps reduce the visibility of stretch marks.
A downtime of two to three days is expected, and some may experience redness or dry skin over the treated area. This is a normal healing process and we strongly recommend you to soothe the treated area with moisturiser. It is also important to note that treatment and result of stretch marks varies from patient to patient, and would typically require about three to four sessions to see significant results.
Zoe Medical specialises in combination treatment of all the above when it comes to treating stretch marks. !
Reach out to Zoe Medical to find out more! Whatsapp us here!
Address: #03-07/08 Camden Medical Centre, One Orchard Boulevard, Singapore 248649
Telephone: 6836 6035 or 9147 6430
Stretch Marks: How to get rid of them?
All information provided is purely for educational purposes only and does not constitute as medical advice.