What are red stretch marks?
Although our skin is elastic, when it stretches more than it should, more than it is used to, scars, called stretch marks ( striae distensae ), form on its surface. Initially , red stretch marks form on the skin, which gradually change color and become white.
Stretch marks are therefore a common skin condition caused by its excessive stretching, which leads to damage to its elastic fibers.
Why are stretch marks red?
What is the difference between red and white stretch marks ? Many people wonder what the difference is between these 2 types of stretch marks and the answer is very simple: the difference between red ( striae rubrae ) and white ( striae albae ) stretch marks is mainly time.
Stretch marks are small injuries to the skin, which responds to the situation by becoming inflamed, while the tissues try to adapt to the effects of stretching. Hence the reddish hue.
The redness doesn't last forever though. As they heal and the inflammation subsides, they will start to turn white and less noticeable.
What are the causes of red stretch marks?
It is commonly believed that stretch marks are due to excess weight. Although weight gain is one of the causes that leads to the development of stretch marks in some areas of the body (the skin is forced to stretch, to increase in volume, and therefore forms those lesions called stretch marks), other causes also incur in the formation of red stretch marks.
- Rapid weight changes . Gaining weight quickly puts pressure on the skin, which is forced to stretch to accommodate the increase in body mass. And this phenomenon can occur anywhere on the body.
- Rapid weight loss . Likewise, stretch marks can also occur due to rapid weight loss.
- Pregnancy . During the second and third trimesters of pregnancy, there may be rapid jumps in body growth, particularly around the abdomen (the skin fibers around the belly stretch to make room for the developing fetus), thighs, and thigh areas. 'hip. The increased pressure can stretch the skin, thus leading to the formation of red stretch marks.
- Inheritance . Stretch marks tend to run within the same family.
Teenage Growth . Teens can develop red stretch marks during puberty -- they're the result of rapid body growth and not necessarily weight gain.
- Rapid muscle growth . Both weight training and body building can sometimes lead to red stretch marks due to muscles getting much bigger in a short period of time.
- Genre . Women are at least 2.5 times more likely to develop stretch marks. However, it's important to note that both women and men are at risk for red stretch marks, especially during puberty.
- Breast augmentation . Breast augmentation can cause skin to stretch in the chest area. The risk of stretch marks may be greater depending on the elasticity of the skin and the final size assumed by the breasts.
- Corticosteroids . Long-term use of corticosteroids can lead to negative side effects, such as inflammation in the body, weight gain, and tight skin. Using over-the-counter hydrocortisone can also thin your skin over time, increasing your risk of stretch marks.
- Specific underlying medical conditions . Aside from rapid weight gain or obesity, other underlying health issues can lead to stretch marks, such as Ehlers-Danlos syndrome and Cushing's syndrome.
Where are they formed?
There are areas of the body where greater amounts of fat are stored, therefore more at risk of stretch marks:
You may also notice stretch marks on your lower back and back of your arms. The skin is most likely to stretch over the parts where the body stores the most fat.
Red stretch marks are easier to treat because the skin in that particular area can still produce collagen , which can cover the stretch marks. Once stretch marks get old and white, they're hard to treat. With proper treatment, the marks may not go away entirely.
Treatments for red stretch marks
Stretch marks fade in the long run: Certain dermatological treatments can lighten red stretch marks so they appear much less noticeable.
- Creams . Tretinoin creams improve the appearance of red stretch marks, but they can also cause irritation, redness, and flaking. Pregnant women should also avoid using these creams.
- Emollient Oils Emollient oils are useful in the treatment and prevention of red stretch marks. Applying emollients helps improve skin elasticity, preventing and treating early stretch marks.
- Light and laser therapies . These procedures work by using rapid pulses of light to destroy surface skin cells. They can reduce the redness and inflammation of stretch marks. However, laser therapy isn't suitable for all skin types, so you'll want to make sure you talk to your dermatologist.
- Microdermabrasion . Microdermabrasion is one of the best ways to deal with red stretch marks. Using tiny crystals, this procedure works by smoothing the top layer of skin. It won't completely get rid of stretch marks, but it can reduce redness and overall appearance.
- Microneedling or Regenerative Skin Microperforation (MCR). The needles in the microneedling device stimulate the skin to produce more collagen. The stings cause minor damage to the skin, which responds by creating new collagen-rich tissue. This new skin tissue is, in turn, more uniform in tone and texture.
- Chemical peels . Chemical peels work on both tone and texture, reducing the overall appearance of stretch marks.
Natural remedies for red stretch marks
There are also a number of home remedies, which don't involve the use of medicines and you can try at home with easy to find products and ingredients.
- Stretch mark creams and lotions . There are topical creams and lotions available to fade stretch marks. There is no scientific evidence of the effectiveness of these products and their ability to repair the elastic fibers of the skin. However these creams can moisturize the skin, which can reduce the appearance of early red stretch marks.
- Glycolic Acid Products Other products may contain glycolic acid , which is used as a chemical exfoliant. The aim is to smooth out the stretch marks on the skin.
- Hydration . Apply emollient ingredients like cocoa butter and beeswax to keep skin hydrated and prevent stretch marks. You can also massage your skin with other emollients like shea butter , virgin coconut oil, or other vegetable oils. While there's no evidence that these ingredients reduce or prevent stretch marks, they help keep skin hydrated, which can reduce the appearance of stretch marks.
- Almond oil . Preventing stretch marks by massaging the skin with almond oil helps keep the skin hydrated and improves its elasticity.
- Hyaluronic acid . Applying hyaluronic acid to early stretch marks can help reduce their appearance, fade them, and make them less noticeable.
The diet against the formation of stretch marks
As we have seen, one of the causes that lead to the formation of red stretch marks is weight gain. Controlling your diet, therefore, helps prevent sudden weight gain and, therefore, prevent stretch marks.
Try to eat a healthy and balanced diet and avoid junk food. A diet rich in essential vitamins and nutrients keeps the skin healthy.