Stretch Mark Removal: Natural Treatments vs. Surgery

Almost 50% of pregnant women develop stretch marks during pregnancy, and most people get stretch marks after gaining or losing a significant amount of weigh within a short period of time.

In some cases, stretch marks can be prevented with various skin nourishing serums, moisturizers and lotions, but once these scars have developed, they cannot be easily eradicated with over-the-counter products. Cosmetic surgeons offer a number of solutions for stretch mark removal, but natural health practitioners contend that there are also some natural, non-chemical and non-surgical treatments available. 
What are the best ways to get rid of stretch marks for good? Here’s a closer look at both natural stretch mark removal treatments and surgical procedures that eliminate stretch marks:

Natural Treatments for Stretch Mark Removal

Traditional Chinese medicine practitioners and herbalists continue to support the theory that a blend of essential oils applied to the skin with intensive massage treatments is the best way to prevent and treat stretch marks. Other natural healing methods for managing stretch marks include:
  • Applying generous amounts of Vitamin E and oils containing Vitamin A to problem areas
  • Applying natural skin care products that contain Rose oil, Rosehip, Chamomile and wheat germ oil
  • Drinking enough water throughout the day to reduce the risk of developing stretch marks
  • Eating a high quality diet rich in natural proteins
  • Wearing appropriate supportive garments during pregnancy
  • Reducing the risk of gaining or losing large amounts of body weight in a short period of time (avoiding drastic weight loss methods and fad diets)
  • Staying fit and healthy to keep skin strong and luminous

Cosmetic Surgery for Stretch Mark Removal

Laser skin resurfacing and skin tightening procedures are among the top choices for permanent stretch mark removal, and have proven to be effective on almost all skin types. Other options include chemical peels that help to resurface the skin from the top layer in, and dermabrasion techniques that buff away the top layer of skin to reveal a fresh layer underneath.

Laser skin resurfacing for stretch marks:  This procedure involves applying a high-energy beam of light directly onto the skin to break down the top layer completely. The tissues disintegrate from the UV-laser light and new layers of skin form over the ‘injured’ tissue very quickly. This procedure can be used on problem areas such as the stomach, arms, and legs, and typically takes only a few hours to complete.
Skin tightening procedures for stretch marks: while skin tightening procedures may not get rid of stretch marks completely, they may help to strengthen the skin and reduce their appearance. Skin tightening procedures such as Thermage work by heating up the skin’s layers and increasing the production of collagen naturally.
Chemical peels for stretch mark removal: chemical peels work by sinking deep into the skin’s layers to trigger a collagen production response. They also provide a deep exfoliation, helping to disintegrate the top layer of skin so that healthy cells can be produced over the tissues. A series of chemical peels may be necessary to achieve desired results, but this process can be effective for very light or recently acquired stretch marks.
Learn more about these specific procedures, or contact a cosmetic surgeon in your area in the above section of this page to discuss different treatment options for your skin type.