PregnancyStretch marks in pregnancy: why do they appear and how to avoid...

Stretch marks in pregnancy: why do they appear and how to avoid them

Stretch marks are very common in pregnancy, but what are their causes and why do they appear during pregnancy? We also discover some useful tips to avoid them.

The grooves consisting of irregular skin areas that resemble lines or strips which are readily visible to the appear as parallel lines reddish usually be thin and bright when they arise, and then go turning over of the time to a whitish color similar in appearance to that of a scar. In general, they tend to have a completely different texture than normal skin, and sometimes they can also be slightly deep.

Although depending on the cause that has caused the appearance of stretch marks, when it disappears the marks also tend to disappear, the truth is that on many occasions it is very common for them to end up remaining on the skin, mainly due to the excessive stretching that it produced. At first its formation and appearance.

Among the stages or times in which stretch marks tend to appear more frequently, we can mainly mention being overweight and overweight, and especially pregnancy. Why? Mainly because, as we will know below, the main cause is weight gain -which can be very rapid and that can affect both men and women equally-, or the enlargement of the abdomen itself and characteristic of pregnancy.

Why do stretch marks appear during pregnancy?

From the beginning of pregnancy, the skin begins to stretch little by little as a consequence, on the one hand, of the enlargement of the abdomen as both the placenta and the baby grow and develop, and on the other, due to the normal weight gain during this important stage.

Both circumstances cause the skin to stretch, at which time the fibers that have less elasticity tend to break and leave a sunken line similar to a small scar, which at the beginning are usually pink, purple or dark brown. Although over time they can become less noticeable and fade a bit, the truth is that they never completely disappear.

The appearance of stretch marks is much more common in the last trimester of pregnancy, when the abdomen expands very rapidly in order to accommodate the growing baby. However, depending on whether or not the weight gain has been rapid during the first months of pregnancy, it is also common for them to appear throughout the pregnancy and not only at the end.

Be that as it may, the reality is that you cannot prevent whether or not you will get stretch marks when you get pregnant. In fact, it is not yet really known why some women do develop stretch marks during pregnancy, and others do not have any at all. Apparently genetics would be closely related, so if your mother had stretch marks during pregnancy it is more than likely that you have them too.

How to avoid stretch marks of pregnancy?

Although it is not always possible and they can appear even if you have followed some useful habits for their prevention, there are some tips that could help you win the game against stretch marks during pregnancy. They are as follows:

  • Gain weight little by little: Rapid weight gain during pregnancy is a common and common cause of stretch marks. Therefore, it is advisable to try to gain weight slowly.  On the other hand, it is best to try not to gain more than the recommended weight, usually between 11 to 16 kg.
  • Hydrate your skin: in order to preserve the natural elasticity of the skin and prepare it to resist the distension caused by the weight gain and volume so characteristic during pregnancy, it is essential to keep your skin continuously hydrated, two to three times up to date. You can opt for body oil or natural oils like almond oil.
  • Coconut oil: natural coconut oil is one of the most suitable natural products when it comes to preventing the appearance of stretch marks during pregnancy. To use it, you must heat it a little in a water bath, since it is usual for it to solidify. Then apply it on your abdomen, breasts and legs, preferably twice a day.
  • Use anti-stretch mark cream: they are useful to hydrate and nourish the skin, helping to prevent the appearance of stretch marks during pregnancy. On the other hand, it is advisable not only to use it during pregnancy but also up to two or three months after delivery. When you apply this cream, try to do it by means of circular massages, ideal to stimulate circulation.
  • Pinch yourself: in addition to circular massages in areas such as the abdomen, chest, hips and thighs, you can choose to gently pinch the skin, also useful to stimulate circulation.
  • Practice physical exercise: if you practice physical exercise during pregnancy on a regular basis, you will achieve good muscle tone, which in turn will result in avoiding micro-tears in the skin that can cause stretch marks.

As you can see, although stretch marks are very common during pregnancy, following a series of habits and natural tips can prevent them from appearing. Try to keep these tricks throughout your pregnancy, especially during the last few months. Ah! And may you be very, very happy with your baby.


  • Miriam Brennan, Mike Clarke, Declan Devane. The use of anti-stretch marks’ products by women in pregnancy: a descriptive, cross-sectional survey. BMC Pregnancy Childbirth. 2016; 16: 276. Doi: 10.1186/s12884-016-1075-9. Disponible en:
  • Rita V. Vora, Rajat Gupta, Malay J. Mehta, Arvind H. Chaudhari, Abhishek P. Pilani, Nidhi Patel. Pregnancy and Skin. J Family Med Prim Care. 2014 Oct-Dec; 3 (4): 318–324. Doi: 10.4103 / 2249-4863.148099. Disponible en:
  • Sumit Kar, Ajay Krishnan, Poonam Varma Shivkumar. Pregnancy and Skin. J Obstet Gynaecol India. 2012 Jun; 62(3): 268–275. Doi: 10.1007/s13224-012-0179-z.  Disponible en:


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