What are Stretch Marks?
Stretch marks form due to the sudden stretching of your skin due to a variety of reasons. They form in the middle layer of your skin which is also referred to as the dermis. The role of the dermis is to support the outer layers of your skin. The dermis is composed of very strong fibers interconnected with each other that allow your skin to stretch with the natural growth of your body. But at the same time, if the dimensions of your body grow at an abnormal and above average rate during a short period of time, then the fibers would start thinning out because as they stretch, they become over-stretched and eventually break.
When these fibers break, the tissues in your skin start tearing apart which exposes the blood vessels below the skin. This explains why the color of new stretch marks is usually reddish and with the passage of time, your blood vessels start to contract which leaves behind the damaged skin prominent giving it a silvery white color. Natural conditions usually do not cause the development of stretch marks, and their formation may vary from person to person. There are some who have a higher tendency to develop them due to above average production of cortisol, which decreases the amount of collagen, a protein which helps to provide elasticity to your skin, produced by your body. This explanation will answer your question as to what are stretch marks actually. Now the question is what causes stretch marks to form. The main causes of stretch marks are rapid gain of weight, pregnancy, genetic formation, medical conditions, your health and puberty.
What Causes Stretch Marks?
Now lets explain what is the cause of stretch marks. First of all, pregnancy happens to be one of the most prominent and widely known cause of stretch marks, and if you are pregnant, the chances that they will form on your body would be after mainly the sixth month. Your body produces a special hormone when your pregnant which helps to soften the ligaments of your pelvis making them more flexible. These hormones end up softening the fibers of your skin which means that you are at a higher risk of getting stretch marks.
As the size of your baby grows, you may develop more stretch marks especially around your abdomen, thighs and breasts. Among the causes of stretch marks, rapid weight gain has been blamed by a large number of women from around the world. If you end up gaining weight rapidly, your stretch marks will form but they will fade away with the passage of time. In case you are losing weight rapidly, stretch marks would again develop. Moreover, bodybuilders and athletes usually end up with them as the size of their muscles increases rapidly. Other causes of stretch marks includes puberty and it is very obvious why they form during this period. This is because the body of young people develops very rapidly due to growth spurts resulting in stretch marks on your shoulders, back, hips, thighs and breasts. These are just few of the main causes of stretch marks amongst people.