Stretch Marks and Stretch Mark Treatment
Have you ever wondered what causes stretch marks, and the best way to get rid of them? There are minimally invasive options that are very effective.
At Utah Valley Dermatology, our current laser stretch mark removal technology has been shown to improve or eliminate red or raised scars on patients. Recent studies have also demonstrated that laser stretch mark removal treatments stimulate the production of collagen and improve or eliminate the appearance of stretch marks as well. Additional studies have found that the appearance of stretch marks continue to improve over a period of time, ranging from 3 – 6 months, after the laser stretch mark removal treatment was given. Even those laser stretch mark removal treatments that showed little if any initial improvement showed as much as a 50% improvement at their 6-month checkup.
Why Do I Have Stretch Marks?
The exact cause of stretch marks is still widely unknown, but it is thought that they are the result of the breaking down of collagen and elastin production due to stress on the skin. Stretch marks can happen for a number of reasons; be it pregnancy (which leaves stretch marks in nearly 90% of cases), weight gain, weight loss, or rapid growth (like puberty), stretch marks are found all throughout the human race, independent of age, sex, or skin color. These are easily one of the biggest and most frustrating cosmetic nuisances people suffer. So if they are so common, why do they happen and why are they so hard to get rid of? With so many stretch mark removal services and creams which ones really work?
Well, stretch marks happen when skin is abnormally stretched or hyper-expanded over a length of time; such stretching causes a rupture in the collagen and elastin that holds the skin together, therefore losing its ability to snap back in to place. The visible wrinkly rifts left in place are literally bands of broken elastin under the skin. Stretch marks are essentially inside-out scars from a wound that happens under the skin and, like many scars, are difficult to get rid of.
Stretch marks often appear around the belly and waistline, on the buttocks, thighs, and around the breasts (during or after pregnancy). It’s quite common to see them in people who have rapidly gained or lost weight, and are tough to prevent and difficult to treat afterwards. When it comes to weight loss, the best way to prevent stretch marks is to try and lose weight at a steady and measured rate; diet-based weight-loss programs with little to no exercise may get rid of weight quickly, but the rapid rate at which weight is lost can easily cause stretch marks. When it comes to pregnancy, balms and creams to prevent stretch marks are often advertised, but are little more than a placebo; the truth is that a healthy weight before pregnancy and a healthy nutritious diet are the best ways to avoid stretch marks from happening. Even then, more often than not, pregnancy will cause stretch marks in around 90% of expecting mothers.
Stretch Mark Removal Procedure
So, seeing as how these annoying stretch marks are so difficult to avoid, is there any way make them go away? This question and the human urge for flawless skin have led to an entire industry of products and treatments for stretch mark removal. Massage therapy, dermal rollers, cocoa butter, stretch mark removal creams; do not be fooled as these are mostly a waste of time and money. Investing in treatment that will have no results can be disheartening and frustrating. Luckily, technology and science offer a few options which do have proven results.
How to Get Rid of Stretch Marks
Many people wonder how to get rid of stretch marks. During the scar and stretch mark removal procedure, the energy of the laser stimulates the skin beneath the scar causing the fibroblasts of the skin to begin to regenerate the connective tissue of the skin. This process also stimulates the production of collagen beneath the skin, encouraging the skin under the scar to thicken until it closely resembles the surrounding healthy skin of the area treated. Utah Valley Dermatology offers a few methods on how to get rid of stretch marks.
The Micropen (Micro-Needling device) offers a safe, comfortable and effective alternative to laser resurfacing. The Dermapen™ is indicated for all skin types, and when performed in a series, provides great results with little to no down time.
The Dermapen treatment uses multiple needles that vertically pierce the skin in rapid succession. This action helps promote epidermal healing, which is the primary function needed for collagen stimulation, fibroblast creation, and the growth of elastin fibers. The automatic vibrating function of the Dermapen™ increases the effectiveness of treatment by increasing absorption of products, while reducing pain and discomfort.