Stretch marks are one of the most common problems that we have noticed in most individuals, and they are annoying to their owners, especially in women, as these marks cause longitudinal lines to appear on the surface of the skin and in a scarlet or white color that can be observed on the surface of the body.
The causes of this problem are many, but they are similar to some degree in the ways to treat and get rid of it.
In our next article, we will discuss the causes and types of stretch marks, and it is important to know how to get rid of stretch marks using well-known medical methods.
What are the stretch marks?
Most of us notice signs that are often in the form of deep red or pink threads that appear in areas that are usually full of fat, such as the abdomen, breasts, thighs, and upper arm, and these threads turn over time from pink to white or gray.
We cannot say that all these signs are of uniform length, but some of them are short and close together, and others are long and scattered to some extent.
The reasons for its appearance…
Stretch marks begin to appear when weight and body size increase, which follows a change in the body due to weight gain, the appearance of stretch marks in the body, even that increase that occurred begins to widen, to exacerbate the stretch marks when combined with an increase in the hormone cortisone. Skin.
When the skin is stretched, this leads to the rupture of the middle layer of the skin, which is called the dermis, and thus will allow the part that lies below the dermis to appear, and this leads to the appearance of these marks. Although the dermis contains strong tissues that allow the skin to expand and due to the large increase in the size of the body and muscles, severe stretching causes tissue rupture and this allows the appearance of blood vessels.
Among the most important causes of stretch marks in the body are:
1 – Pregnancy
During pregnancy, stretch marks in the skin begin to appear in many women, especially in the last months of pregnancy, when the size of the abdomen increases, leading to the stretching of the skin in that area, in addition to hormonal factors that also play a role in the stretching of the skin.
2 – gaining weight
When you gain a lot of weight, the skin expands to accommodate the recent increase, and this condition is very common in men.
3- Play sports and body changes
Heavy weight lifters show stretch marks, especially in the arms area. Also in adolescents, stretch marks are noticed during growth spurts, but after a while they begin to disappear.
4- Use of certain medications
Some creams that contain corticosteroids cause the appearance of stretch marks in the skin, as well as the frequent use of oral or systemic steroid tablets and medications containing high levels of cortisone.
5- Infection with some diseases
Certain diseases such as diseases of the adrenal glands, Marfan syndrome, Cushing syndrome, Ehlers-Danlos syndrome and genetic disorders.
Stretch Marks Types
- Red stretch marks: They are the first stages of the appearance of stretch marks in the skin. When the dermis ruptures, blood vessels begin to appear red. The chances of treatment in that simple first stage are much greater than in the advanced stages of stretch marks, where treatment is done using topical creams.
- White stretch marks: they become white when the blood vessels are smaller. The appearance of stretch marks begins to turn white, gray or silver in some people. In this case, the marks persist for a period of time to change their color. Treating stretch marks using topical creams is of no use, while the Adopting laser technology to reduce white and silver color until the original color is restored, even if this technique does not contribute to skin moisture and restore softness in it.
Stretch marks during pregnancy and how to treat them
In pregnant women, especially in the period between the sixth month until the ninth month of pregnancy, we see signs appear and these signs remain after pregnancy in the event that the mother loses a lot of weight within a short period after birth.
We cannot choose the laser technology in treatment during pregnancy, as topical creams help in giving the skin the moisture it needs, but even these creams are preferable not to be used until after consulting a specialist.
Therefore, the best way to prevent the appearance of stretch marks in the skin during pregnancy is to avoid weight gain or rapid weight loss. We can achieve this by continuing the monthly follow-up to the doctor to give a diet that includes steadily gaining weight during pregnancy and also another diet after childbirth with the aim Gradual loss of excess weight also to avoid the rupture of collagen and elastin tissues.
The methods of treating stretch marks in the skin are multiple because of their different degrees, as the treatment of red marks is simpler and faster, because they are in their early stages, but the treatment of white or silver marks requires a higher and longer degree of treatment in order to see the desired results.
Among the best techniques that have proven effective results, with the testimony of dermatologists, are:
- Topical creams. Moisturizing creams help stimulate collagen in the skin, which in turn increases the hydration that the skin needs. Despite their limited effectiveness, their effectiveness is in cases of treating redness that are modern and also help, in particular, to relieve itching that usually accompanies the appearance of stretch marks in At this stage, one of the best creams is “tretinoin cream”, which works to restore collagen in the skin, which is a fibrous protein that gives elasticity to the skin.
- Carboxy treatment. Helps in stretch marks by increasing the proportions of collagen and elastin in the skin, and this reduces the diameter of the torn fibers of the white lines, as medical carbon dioxide is injected into the skin, and this contributes to sending oxygen to the area and thus creating new blood vessels. Work on tissue regeneration, a technique that is very effective in the case of treatment Primary red in the first treatment session.
- Mesotherapy injection. This method of stretch marks contains a lot of amino acids and vitamins that we can inject into or under the scar tissue to work on stimulating the cells to make elastin and collagen in the connective tissue. Sometimes mesotherapy is combined with micro-needles or carboxy to get the best results.
- Laser treatment. As for the laser used in the treatment of stretch marks, there are two types of lasers, namely: 1_ liquid flash laser, which stimulates elastin and collagen in the skin and works to hide recent stretch marks. Therefore, it must be used carefully. 2- Thermal fractional laser (carbon dioxide or erbium laser), which heats the deeper layers of the skin and then removes the damaged skin layer by layer precisely until the smoother and newer skin begins to appear under it and rich in collagen, and this laser often targets smaller areas of the skin This is in order to minimize skin damage. There are other treatments that work using light, such as Ebel and Fraxel, all of which can help improve the texture and fade the red color. As for the final results, they differ from person to person, due to the difference in the nature of the skin and the type of skin.
- Microscopic scratches in the dermis layer: This technique is used to lightly injure the skin using crystals while suctioning the skin upwards. This treatment only affects the outer layer of the skin and encourages the growth of new skin.
- Chemical peeling with glycolic acid. This method is very effective in treating old and new stretch marks and skin cracks.
- This is a type of surgery performed by a dermatologist. At first, the doctor cleanses the area, then puts a chemical solution on the skin and makes a deliberate cut in the skin, and this encourages the growth of new skin.
- Micro-needle therapy: where micro-needles are used by manual dermarollers or electric micro-needles (Dermapen), which seek to get rid of the damaged visible skin tissue and visible stretch marks and make room for younger and more fresh lower layers. By opening channels for the nutrients that will be applied to the skin, this gives it the opportunity to be most effectively absorbed into the dermis layer.
As for the treatment, the women gave positive results, especially at the beginning of the signs (red lines, not white), and for the women who used the laser, they showed positive evaluations and noticeable improvements.
In addition to the positive evaluations of women with white lines, micro-needle therapy, radiofrequency, and the Vivace technique were used.
Radiofrequency micro-needling is used to improve collagen and tighten skin.
Traditional home methods of treatment
Among the most important creams on the market that are said to help treat skin cracks, such as cocoa butter, shea butter and vitamin E, which he can try at home, even using them is not useful for treating stretch marks.
The effectiveness of these creams is great for moisturizing the skin and can encourage the fading of purple in stretch marks, and in the treatment of chapped skin and the marks themselves.
There are other ways to use olive oil, fruit acid, or seaweed compresses.
Stretch marks are also slightly relieved by creams, and this depends on a number of factors, and they can be eliminated through surgery as well.
Stretch marks treatment cost
For simple stretch marks, it is possible with the help of natural herbal medicines to fade stretch marks slowly, but it takes a lot of time and can have negative effects if the medicine does not match the patient’s body type. In normal cases in which stretch marks are stretched, the cost of removal with herbal medicines costs about $550 and a standard procedure for treating stretch marks costs about $1,200.
As for the costs of treatment through laser technology, its cost ranges from $500 to $8,900.
Each excisional laser treatment costs an average of $2,681 and non-ablative laser treatments cost $1,410 per treatment, according to the American Society of Aesthetic Plastic Surgery.
As for the cost of treating white lines with a laser, we find that the cost of regular sessions ranges between 200 and 700 USD per session, while a single fractional laser session may reach 1000 USD in some places.