Pregnancy is an exciting journey in any woman's life. Along the way though, there are things that instill fear and apprehension. Some of these things such as pregnancy/infant loss are at the top of most women's lists, preterm labor or some sort of complication likely follows, and then you start getting into the less serious but still daunting things like stretch marks.
My pregnancy with Cakes was the first time in my life I didn't feel like I had to watch my weight. I gained 30 pounds by the time I delivered at 31 weeks and probably would have kept going had I not delivered. I count myself fortunate that I was able to prevent stretch marks the first time around but that doesn't ensure that I won't get them during this pregnancy.
I know that genetics predispose us to getting stretch marks and if our moms or sisters got stretch marks, we're likely to get them too. Fortunately for me, my mom didn't get stretch marks when she was pregnant with me and I'm an only child so there's no other basis of comparison. Since genetics seem to be in my favor, I have been trying to do everything else in my power to avoid getting stretch marks in this pregnancy. Stretch marks are caused by the rapid expansion of tissue beneath the skin due to weight gain so I'm trying to ensure I gain weight steadily and limiting it to the recommended 25-35 pounds eating a balanced diet and exercising.
Adequate hydration and is another key to helping prevent stretch marks. Keeping skin hydrated through water and the use of beauty products such as lotions, creams, and oils will prevent itching. Itching leads to scratching and scratching is damaging to the skin so it's best to keep your skin moisturized and avoid the itching altogether.
This mama is hoping to avoid any “badges of honor.” From the day I got a positive pregnancy test, I've been devoting extra time to my skin care routine and concentrating on stretch mark prone areas such as my belly, buttocks, breasts, thighs, and hips. Stretch marks are permanent and although they may fade over time from red or purple to white or silver, they will never fully go away. A little extra time devoted each day to keeping my skin moisturized is worth the potential benefit of a life free of stretch marks.
What do/did you use to prevent stretch marks?