Stretch marks are a particularly challenging blemish to deal with, especially when you consider that their cause is often completely out of your control. Thankfully, laser treatment is an effective and safe way to treat even the most stubborn stretch marks.
Stretch marks appear on both fair and dark skin. They are streaks of discolored skin that appear anywhere skin stretches quickly. The most common places for stretch marks to appear include the abdomen, chest, thighs, and hips. Most often, stretch marks are caused by weight gain, pregnancy, or from growth during puberty in teens. On dark complexions they appear as lighter than the surrounding skin, and on lighter skin they look red or pinkish. Sometimes stretch marks have a shimmery quality to them. Preventing stretch marks is difficult, and there is little evidence that anything works to stop them. If you are pregnant or experiencing puberty, stretch marks are often unavoidable.
Oftentimes, stretch marks fade on their own with time. Pregnant women will notice their stretch marks slowly become less visible. Teens and young adults with stretch marks caused by puberty also often see stretch marks slowly lose their definition. With weight gain however, stretch marks will usually linger until the weight is lost. Even after the sudden change, stretch marks can stick around depending on your genetic predisposition to them and the nature of your skin. While stretch marks fade, they don’t just vanish. Sometimes your skin needs an extra boost.
Stretch marks are almost certainly unavoidable if your skin changes rapidly. It is possible that hyaluronic acid treatments can help ease stretch marks, but there is not enough evidence available to verify these claims for certain. Hyaluronic acid is often used to treat stretch marks after they develop, along with laser therapy. Laser therapy is not new, but scientists continue to uncover better ways to use this advanced technology to treat a myriad of medical and cosmetic skin conditions. Laser therapy is sometimes used to help balance out skin impacted by pigmentation issues like vitiligo or age spots. This form of treatment is called excimer laser therapy. The simplest solution for people with darker skin is to use laser light to encourage the production of melanin. Melanin is what gives skin its pigmentation, so higher concentrations of melanocytes mean darker skin. It occurs naturally when skin is exposed to UV light.
For people with fair skin, you’re not out of luck by any means. Laser therapy can still work for lighter skin, just in a different way. Our skin is composed of a few key proteins. These proteins make up our skin, nails, and hair. One major component of skin is collagen. Collagen helps skin maintain moisture and structure. Another protein in your skin is called elastin. Elastin sounds just like what it does—it helps provide your skin elasticity and resilience to growth and change. Lasers are often applied to the skin in order to cause superficial, controlled damage to the topmost layers of your skin. When this skin sloughs off, healthier skin growth takes its place. The laser treatment encourages natural collagen and elastin production to provide skin with more support and elasticity. Not only will your stretch marks fade after laser treatment, the skin will also be healthier and stronger.
Laser treatment is an incredibly broad field of medicine, with a number of excellent applications. Stretch marks are no match for the right laser therapy, so if you’re ready to say goodbye to your eyesores, call the dermatologists at Northeast Dermatology Associates.
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