Facts about stretch marks
– “Striae Distensae” is the medical term for stretch marks
– They are very common
– There is no medical problem associated to stretch marks
– Stretch marks are painless
– Stretch marks are developed during pregnancy or weight gain
What are stretch marks?
Stretch marks appear when the skin has been overstretched. They are linear streaks that run perpendicular to maximum lines of tension in the skin. When they first appear they are flat red lines but over time the colour fades into white streaks and become slightly smaller in appearance. They most commonly occur near the arm pits, on the thighs, on the abdomen area, the chest and in the groin area. Stretch marks have a similar appearance to a balloon that has been over inflated.
What causes stretch marks?
It is believed that stretch marks are caused when the elastic fibres of the dermis (the deeper layer of the skin) have been damaged, and inflammation occurs. This results in scar-like changes. These changes occur when there is too much stretching of the skin.
There are a few known factors that contribute to stretch marks. The increase or decrease of body weight, excessive use of steroids, Cushing’s disease (which is the overproduction of glucocorticoids by the adrenal gland), puberty, Marfan’s syndrome and Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome (2 uncommon genetic diseases), breast implants (excessively large), and pregnancy.