The pregnancy period is always more special for every woman. Emotional ups and downs, body sickness, food cravings, and smell allergies are usually common in this duration.
What about skin changes? Some people may have beautiful, glowing skin with chubby cheeks. But others may appear sick with under-eye circles, skinny faces, acne, and dark spots.
Of course, all these changes depend on estrogen and progesterone level. Read this if you are curious to know more. Here we have explained all the skin changes you can expect during pregnancy.
You can expect
- Skin glow
- Spider veins
- Itchy skin
- Stretch marks
- Skin sensitivity
- Linea nigra
- Prurigo of pregnancy
The increased blood production and circulation are the primary cause of this sudden glow in your skin. Some women may put on some extra weight during their pregnancy. It will also make them appear more beautiful than before.
During pregnancy, you may notice sudden breakouts. It appears in your first, second, or third trimesters. The hormonal fluctuation in this duration increases oil production in your skin and causes acne.
Here, no need to use acne creams or spot treatments. This acne will go away when your hormonal level becomes normal.
Some people use isotretinoin for acne. But it is not a safer option in pregnancy duration. Also, try to avoid oral tetracyclines and topical retinoids when you are pregnant.
Spider veins on your belly, legs, ankles, and thighs will be around 2 mm in diameter. It comes in different colors, like red, purple, or blue. The increased blood level and hormonal changes are the causes here.
These marks will fade away after your delivery. In some cases, it remains the same for a particular duration. At the instant, you can wait or consult a doctor for treatment.
During pregnancy, you can avoid it by regular exercise and maintaining a perfect pregnancy weight.
There are two reasons for itchy skin during pregnancy. One is changes in your hormonal level, and the second is skin stretching when your bump grows. In some cases, it may indicate a liver condition called intrahepatic cholestasis of pregnancy or ICP.
Mild itching is not a serious condition. Wearing loose clothes helps you reduce the contact between your bump and the cloth and prevent itchiness. You can also ask your doctor for lotions to treat this itchy feeling.
Applying aloe vera is the natural way to soothe your itchy feel.
Stretch marks are the blue, purple, or red lines on your belly during pregnancy. In some cases, it appears on your thighs and breasts. Generally, these marks are not harmful.
Getting stretch marks purely depends on your skin type. Weight gain may also play a vital role in your stretch marks. So, try to maintain a healthy body weight during your pregnancy.
Another important thing is that you cannot prevent this from happening during pregnancy. But you can reduce the appearance after delivery with creams or lotions. Usually, they start to fade away once the baby is born.
In some exceptional cases, these marks will not go away completely too.
Skin sensitivity is a common scenario during pregnancy. Again, the reason is hormonal changes.
In this phase, regular moisturizers, creams or some foods may irritate your skin and develop allergies. It is an example of skin sensitivity during pregnancy.
To reduce these issues, go for mild or gentle product options. Otherwise, choose products customized for pregnancy skin.
Be aware while picking makeup products during pregnancy. It should be free from preservatives, harsh chemicals, and oil components.
Chloasma or mask of pregnancy is a condition in which your skin produces extra pigments in some areas. Research says it affects 50-70 % of pregnant women worldwide. This pigmentation usually appears in areas like your cheek, forehead, chin, and upper lip.
Skin darkness without any itchiness or soreness is the primary symptom of this condition. The reason for these skin changes is variations in estrogen and progesterone level. You can expect this condition at any point during your pregnancy. In most cases, it appears for the first time in the second or third trimester.
Severe sun exposure can increase the level of darkness in this area. So, avoiding it or protecting your skin using the proper SPF formula is better. These spots completely fade away within a few months after your delivery.
Linea nigra is a dark, vertical straight line that runs over your belly. It is common in most pregnant women. It will be more visible in women with dark skin and less visible in women with fair skin.
You can expect this line in the middle of pregnancy. Since it directly connects with your hormonal level, you cannot avoid it altogether. But you can reduce the appearance with customized skincare products.
This line takes two weeks to a few months to disappear after delivery. In some cases, it remains the same for years. You can use skin-lightening treatments to treat it.
Prurigo Of Pregnancy
They are itchy rashes in pink, red, or purple in color. These rashes usually appear in your second or third trimester. Arms, legs, shoulders, and the back of your elbow and knees are familiar places where you can expect these rashes.
Prurigo is common in 1/300 women during their pregnancy. You can treat this by consulting your doctor. He may suggest oral medicines or topical treatments. Wearing loose-fitting clothes made of natural fibers can also help relieve your prurigo symptoms.
Make Your Pregnancy Happier
Physical and mental changes are common in this period. Skin changes, medications, exercises, lifestyle changes, food habits, and allergies make you feel stressed most of the time. But try to accept these changes with happiness and do whatever you can from your side. Thus, you can make your pregnancy duration happier and more memorable.
Q: Can you prevent skin changes during pregnancy?
A: No, you cannot prevent this from happening. But you can get medications from your doctor to reduce the visible marks and symptoms. Otherwise, wait until they fade away on their own after delivery.
Q: What are the causes of the dark neck during pregnancy?
A: Chloasma, or mask of pregnancy, is the primary cause of the dark neck during pregnancy. Intake of iron tablets also causes darkness in your neck area.
- Chloasma-the mask of pregnancy: https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/19140277/
- Linea nigra: https://www.babycenter.com/pregnancy/your-body/linea-nigra_40008034
- What is prurigo of pregnancy?: https://my.clevelandclinic.org/health/diseases/22642-prurigo-of-pregnancy#:~:text=Prurigo%20of%20pregnancy%20(also%20called,the%20second%20or%20third%20trimester.
- Pregnancy and Skin: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4311336/