Stretch marks are a result of tears in the inner layers of the skin. In fact they are made up of internal scar tissue, covered by attenuated epidermis. It lacks hair follicles, sweat glands and sebum glands.Stretch marks appear as streaks of a few millimeters wide, deep purple initially. As they mature they assume a whitish color. They cause a disfiguring irregular and flabby aspect of the affected skin areas.
The following conditions may underlay the problem:
- pregnancy, in particular when associated with excessive weight gain.
- rapid weight gain, particularly during puberty.
- conditions that lead to hormonal abnormalities.
The most affected areas are the tummy, breasts, hips and thighs and even upper arms.
Stretch Marks Treatment
Initially, stretch marks are a pinkish-purple. At this early stage, treatment consists of daily massage with a special body oil and repeated micro-dermabrasion. This makes the attenuated epidermis to heal in more effectively. As a result stretch marks heal in and become much less noticeable.
Micro-dermabrasion safely improves the epidermal structure and the condition of the deeper dermis. It is a medical “sand blasting” technique whereby microscopic particles abrade the treated skin. In the process of microscopic penetration and biological restitution, it stimulates the formation of new collagen and elastin. This is needed to help the healing and results in smoother skin. For the best result, micro-dermabrasion needs to be regularly repeated in 6 to 10 sessions.
Once mature and white, stretch marks will respond to a far lesser extend to this treatment. Should they, at this stage, still be disturbing the best alternative is to resect the affected skin by means of body contouring surgery.