Skin change is a change of skin color and appearance. Skin change in pregnancy is very common as a result of hormonal change such as new glow on your face or pinkish, reddish streaks on your stomach, etc., and not be mistaken as skin diseases, but they can cause some discomfort if you are worry about the appearance of skin change in your face. Most of skin change will disappear after childbirth but some of them will be less noticeable but not completely disappear.
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Why skin change in pregnancy
Approximate 90% of women experience some kinds of skin change in pregnancy, it is caused by the elevation of the estrogen levels effecting the change in veins and the melanocyte-stimulating hormone (MSH) effecting on melanocytes, the skin cells that contain the black pigment.
Types of skin change
Most common types of skin change in pregnancy include
1. Stretch Marks
Stretch marks are a form of scarring on the skin with pinkish or reddish streaks running down your abdomen and/or breasts as a result of tearing of the dermis due to the enlarged abdomen and breast overtime in pregnancy. Stretch marks may fade in color after childbirth but not completely disappear. In a study of Prophylaxis of Striae gravidarum with a topical formulation. A double blind trial. by Mallol J, Belda MA, Costa D, Noval A, Sola M., researchers found that a daily application of a cream (Trofolastin) containing Gotu Kola extract, vitamin E, and collagen hydrolysates was associated with fewer stretch marks during pregnancy.
2. Darkening of Freckles, Moles
It is the result of increased hormones cause changes in the skin pigmentation. The darken area will only lighten and not disappear after childbirth.
Also known as Mask of pregnancy when appears in pregnant women, it is a tan or dark skin discoloration as a result of the stimulation of melanocytes in melanin pigments production by elevating of estrogen and progesterone. Usually, the mark of pregnancy will disappear over a period of several months after giving birth. Hydroquinone (HQ), the over-the-counter medicine of topical depigmenting agents inhibits tyrosinase, an enzyme involved in the production of melanin.
4. Skin Itchy
Dryness and itching abdomen and breast is a result of the growth of the fetus, making the skin of your belly and breast stretches and tightens in the later stage of pregnancy. It may cause discomfort as a result of hormonal change during pregnancy. They will go away a few months after childbirth. In this case, experts recommend not to hot showers and baths but shower and bath with mild soap and and rinse it off well and towel off lightly.
Some women,1 in 100% may develop intrahepatic cholestasis of pregnancy in the third trimester.
If you are experience severe itching, accompanied with the symptoms of darker urine, lighter stools, fatigue, increased nausea, decrease in appetite, itching that increases in the evening, Itching to the palms of the hands and soles of the feet, without presence of a rash, etc., please check with your doctor immediately, intrahepatic cholestasis if left untreated, it can increase the risk of fetal distress, meconium ingestion, meconium aspiration syndrome, stillbirth, etc. In this case, prescribed ursodeoxycholic acid can be helpful.
If the itching is intense and spreads to your arms and legs with the presence of hives-like rash and bumps on your abdomen, you may develop pruritic urticarial papules and plagues (PUPP) that affects about one in two hundred pregnancies and mostly to the mother who are carrying large babies, twins, and triplets, PUPP will go away after a few months after giving birth. (Some studies reveal that this condition is more frequent in women carrying boys). We will discuss the subject of PUPP more in next article.
5. Pimple and Acne
Pimple and Acne may be elevated as a result of oil glands secreting more oil as we mentioned above. Some women may be experience the pimple and acne breakouts but it is normal in pregnancy, especially for women already have the problems before pregnancy.
Experts do not recommend any oral medication in pregnancy but only mild soap or cleanser twice a day. In case of breakouts, topical prescription antibiotic creams containing erythromycin or clindamycin, may be used with the permission of your doctor.
6. Skin Tags
Skin tags are very small, rapid growth of skin due to hormonal change in pregnancy. It is mostly occurred in the skin rubbing against clothing such as under a bra, or skin rubbing together. The symptom usually disappears after childbirth.
7. Pregnancy Glow
Pregnancy Glow a common occurrence of women in the pregnancy as a result the increased blood volume circulating in the body, leading to oily ski, including to your face as a result of
hormonal change. Experts do not recommend the use of any medication in pregnancy but only oil free cleanser
8. Varicose Veins
Varicose veins are swollen veins that may bulge near the surface of the skin and usually appear on the legs during pregnancy, as a result of increasing blood flow to the fetus in pregnancy that affects the function of leaflet valves in preventing the blood from flowing backwards, causing varicose veins. Women who are overweight and/or have a family history of the diseases are at risk to develop varicose veins in pregnancy.
Since it will gone away a few months after giving birth, most experts do not recommend any treatments, unless there is blood clot infection or it has become unbearable pain. If you have developed blood clot in the leg in pregnancy, check with your doctor. Clot that do go away in a few months few months should be treated, otherwise, it may affect the lung, causing unnecessary consequences.
9. Spider Veins
Spider veins appear most in the Caucasian women in pregnancy. They are small dilated blood vessels near the surface of the skin, including face, neck, upper chest and arms, as a result of increasing blood flow due to hormonal change in pregnancy. Since they will be disminished a few months after giving birth, most experts do not recommend any treatment, unless they are absolutely necessary. On the other hand, in nutritional perspective, can help to manufacture collagen, the protein and main component of connective tissue which can enhance the functions of the cartilage, bone, blood vessels, the gut, and intervertebral disc, etc.
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