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The Truth about Stretch Marks

 
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Most credible dermatologists and plastic surgeons say that these treatments may have some value when striae are new and their color is reddish, and less value when the marks are mature (usually silvery white). If you decide to give one of these options a try, be sure to ask what happens if you’re not satisfied with the results. Safeguard your wallet.

Plastic surgery is an option for some people who have not just stretch marks, but saggy skin and stubborn fat deposits on the abdomen as well. Abdominoplasty, or tummy tuck surgery, often combined with liposuction, can tighten up and improve the look of your entire belly, including getting rid of stretch marks. If this sounds attractive to you, consider scheduling a consultation with at least two board certified plastic surgeons and pay special attention to what the procedure can do for your stretch marks. Depending on where the lines on your belly are located, you may not be able to get rid of all of them with a tummy tuck. And remember you’ll be trading smaller striae for one bigger scar.

Today, the best way to handle stretch marks is to prevent them as much as possible. This is another great reason to keep your weight in check and avoid becoming overweight and/or cycles of weight gain and loss. And if you’re a body builder, consider a program that will help you develop and tone your muscles gradually.

When you’re pregnant and weight gain is inevitable, keeping it to a reasonable level will help. And actually, pregnancy is a time to pay attention to vitamins—extra vitamins orally will help keep you in good health overall and many doctors feel that topical application of vitamins like B and C can’t hurt. (Again, this is about prevention, not repair.) Wearing a good support bra can help prevent tearing and stretching as your breasts gain volume.

It’s frustrating and somewhat perplexing that there’s no great option for treating stretch marks, since they are such a widespread problem for women.

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We value and respect our HERWriters' experiences, but everyone is different. Many of our writers are speaking from personal experience, and what's worked for them may not work for you. Their articles are not a substitute for medical advice, although we hope you can gain knowledge from their insight.

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