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How To Remove Stretch Marks According To Experts

How To Remove Stretch Marks According To Experts

Stretch marks don’t cause pain nor are they harmful to one’s health. Still, some people don’t like the way they make their skin look. Is it possible to eliminate these narrow bands? In this article, we’ll talk about ways how to remove stretch marks.

Why Do Stretch Marks Occur?

Before we discuss some tips on how to remove stretch marks, let’s first understand why they appear.

First, note that stretch marks are actually scars. They develop when the skin shrinks or stretches quickly, which causes the collagen and elastin to rupture. As the skin heals, the scars (stretch marks) appear.

You are more likely to have stretch marks during:

  • Growth spurts during puberty
  • Pregnancy
  • Rapid weight gain or loss
  • Rapid muscle gain, perhaps due to training

Some diseases, like Cushing’s syndrome, and long-term use of medicines, such as topical corticosteroids, may also predispose a person to developing stretch marks. Family history also seems to play a role.

Initially, the scars feel raised, with appearance that varies depending on the skin color. Later, however, they become slightly depressed scars.

How To Remove Stretch Marks

Now that we have a better understanding of why stretch marks appear, let’s talk about the safe ways to remove these scars. Below are some of the treatments that dermatologists may recommend:

1. Retinoids and Hyaluronic Acid

Perhaps, the most convenient way to remove stretch marks is through the application of retinoid creams, which are a derivative of vitamin A.

One example, Tretinoin, helps reduce the appearance of stretch marks by rebuilding the collagen in the skin.

Reminders:

  • Never use retinoids if you’re pregnant or breastfeeding unless your doctor approves it. The medicine might affect the baby.
  • In most cases, retinoid creams work only on “young” scars (a few months old).
  • It might take weeks before the product works.

If retinoids don’t suit your condition, your dermatologist might recommend hyaluronic acid. Some studies indicate that it can make stretch marks less noticeable.

2.Laser Therapy

Another popular way on how to remove stretch marks is through laser therapy (also known as laser resurfacing). This procedure works by stimulating collagen production and improving skin elasticity.

3. Microdermabrasion

Microdermabrasion uses needles or fine crystals to remove dead skin cells and stimulate collagen production.

Experts say microdermabrasion is the initial treatment of choice for people with darker complexion because they are less likely to result in skin color changes than laser resurfacing treatment.

4. Radiofrequency (RF Treatment)

Dermatologists might also recommend RF treatment. This works by “heating” the deeper layers of the skin, which then stimulates collagen production. The treatment promotes cell turnover, making the new skin appear firmer, smoother, and younger-looking.

Reminders on Removing Stretch Marks

Although we use the term “remove stretch marks,” please note that none of these treatment methods can totally eliminate the scars. They may be able to reduce the appearance, but stretch marks don’t disappear completely.

Experts also DO NOT recommend the ways on how to remove stretch marks for adolescents. The scars they have from growth spurt may fade over time and new stretch marks might develop as they grow older.

Additionally, be careful with home remedies. Studies show that massaging olive oil, cocoa butter, almond oil, and vitamin E are not effective in making stretch marks less visible.

Visit a Dermatologist

How to remove stretch marks? The best way to do it is with the help of a board-certified dermatologist. Even if you already have a treatment in mind, consulting a doctor determines if your choice is the best one based on your skin type, maturity of scars, preferences, and expectations.

With a dermatologist, you can be sure that they are expertly trained to perform the procedure.

Learn more about Skincare and Cleansing here.

Hello Health Group does not provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.

Sources

STRETCH MARKS: WHY THEY APPEAR AND HOW TO GET RID OF THEM, https://www.aad.org/public/cosmetic/scars-stretch-marks/stretch-marks-why-appear, Accessed March 8, 2022

Stretch Marks, https://kidshealth.org/en/teens/stretch-marks.html, Accessed March 8, 2022

Stretch marks, https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/stretch-marks/diagnosis-treatment/drc-20351144, Accessed March 8, 2022

Microdermabrasion, https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/cosmetic-procedures/microdermabrasion/, Accessed March 8, 2022

So, Are Radiofrequency Treatments Really Safe?, https://www.americanboardcosmeticsurgery.org/are-radiofrequency-treatments-really-safe/, Accessed March 8, 2022

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Written by Lorraine Bunag, R.N. Updated 2 weeks ago
Medically reviewed by Dexter Macalintal, MD