What are stretch marks?
Depending on the race and age of the population studied, the prevalence of stretch marks has been reported to range from 50% to 90%. “Stretch marks are thought to be due to rapid skin expansion, such as from weight gain during pregnancy or puberty, and breaks in connective tissue and collagen found deep underneath the skin,” says Rachel Nazarian, MD, a board-certified dermatologist.
They moisturise, moisturise, and moisturise some more
The good news: Stretch marks aren’t inevitable. The bad news? According to Dr Nazarian, some people are just genetically predisposed to them. But a good way to help minimise your chances of getting stretch marks is to make sure to moisturise skin liberally, especially during times of pregnancy and rapid weight gain or loss. Skin that’s well hydrated is more supple and better able to withstand the forces of stretch.
They get massages
Another thing that keeps skin healthy and less likely to develop stretch marks is massage, according to Dr Nazarian. “I encourage massage with emollients that help promote circulation and potentially minimise the chance of stretch marks,” says Dr Nazarian.