Cosmetic concerns like stretch marks can be a source of anxiety for women. Their appearance can result from puberty, pregnancy or weight gain. Though stretch marks can fade gradually over time, they will never fully disappear.
However, a fractional ablative radio-frequency pixel laser can dramatically reduce the appearance of these cosmetic concerns, restoring confidence and self-esteem to women who may be unhappy with their appearance.
What Are Stretch Marks?
Stretch marks, or striae, occur when the skin stretches rapidly. Stretch marks can vary in appearance but are usually found on the abdomen, upper arms, buttocks, breasts and thighs. They commonly accompany pregnancy.
About Stretch Marks
Stretch marks, or striae, are the cause of skin stretching (i.e. rapid tearing of the dermis) and can vary in appearance. They are usually found on the abdomen, upper arms, buttocks, breasts and thighs. They commonly occur when women become pregnant. Stretch marks:
- Can appear as red, pink or purple indented streaks
- Vary based on duration, cause and location on the body
- Depend on skin type
- Fade to a light pink, white or grayish color
- Sometimes cover large areas of the body
Stretch marks commonly occur with pregnancy due to stretching of abdominal skin and hormonal changes. Other causes include sudden weight gain, as can happen during growth spurts with adolescents and with weightlifters. Medication, such as corticosteroid creams and pills, and some steroids can create marks. And various diseases or disorders like Cushing’s, Marfan and Ehlers-Danlos syndromes can be the cause of stretch marks.
Circumstances that increase the likelihood of stretch marks include:
- Family history
- Pregnancy, especially with younger women
- Obesity or being overweight
- Being female
- Sudden weight gain or loss
- Corticosteroid medication
Do At-Home Treatments Work?
Most of us have heard of various treatments or drugstore-creams that claim to erase or diminish stretch marks. These treatments claim to be effective, but the real question is: do they work?
You’re likely to see ingredients such as organic olive oil, jojoba, aloe, shea, cocoa and mango butter in many of these products. In addition, there are many home remedies that can be whipped up with a few ingredients pulled from your kitchen pantry and bathroom cabinet. At-home treatments can vary from something as simple as Aloe vera and coconut oil, to a sugar scrub or retinoids.
Yet, the truth is little clinical evidence showing that any of these treatments actually cure stretch marks. In a 1996 study, researchers identified retinoids as a remedy to help reduce the appearance of stretch marks.
Ridding your skin of stretch marks with natural or at-home remedies is unlikely. Stretch marks are a type of scar and therefore, cannot be “erased” by these products. Still, some over-the-counter topical cosmetic creams may help minimize stretch marks by making the skin appear smoother and more youthful. Lasers, however, are currently the most effective method to reduce the appearance of stretch marks.
What is Laser Stretch Mark Reduction?
Using a fractional ablative radio-frequency pixel laser, light waves help stimulate collagen and elastin growth in the skin to reduce the overall appearance of stretch marks. This nonsurgical treatment uses radiofrequency to stimulate collagen production which in turn produces smoother and tighter skin. The treatment is virtually pain-free with no downtime and can be performed on any part of the body. Multiple treatments are recommended for the best results.
How Long is the Treatment?
The amount of time each session takes depends on the size of the area being treated, but most sessions last around 30 minutes. Patients should expect to see an improved appearance of skin tone and texture during the first six weeks following treatment.
How Many Treatments Will I Need?
We recommend between three to five treatments for optimal results. Treatments are usually scheduled three to six weeks apart.
Why Use Laser Treatments for Stretch Mark Reduction?
Stretch marks can vary in size, shape and appearance. Laser treatment helps encourage collagen and elastin growth, which in turn reduces and minimizes the appearance of all types of stretch marks. By breaking down old and damaged tissue, the fractional laser light pulses tell your body to create new tissue.
Laser treatment for stretch marks can improve both the color and texture of tissue. Women of all ages who choose laser treatments for stretch mark reduction should see the scarring diminish. In addition, the raised appearance and texture that accompanies stretch marks will be improved, leaving you with more toned and youthful looking skin.
How Does a Fractional Ablative Radio-Frequency Laser Help?
The fractional ablative radio-frequency pixel laser’s precise light wavelengths help stimulate collagen and elastin growth in the skin, helping to reduce and to minimize the appearance of stretch marks, C-section scars or any trauma-related scar.
The fractional ablative radio-frequency pixel laser is efficacious on all stretch marks.
Why Use Laser Treatments For Stretch Mark Reduction?
Women of any age who use laser treatments to reduce the appearance of scarring and stretch marks:
- Experience no downtime
- Have minimal discomfort/pain
- Can return to daily activities immediately
- Need one treatment a month for a minimum of three months
- Return to work the same day or a day later
Who’s a Good Candidate for Laser Treatment?
Success rates tend to be the highest on newer stretch marks, particularly those which developed in the last six months. Still, Dr. Ghozland can treat all stress-related marks at any stage.
How Effective is Laser Treatment with Stretch Mark Reduction?
Women tend to see higher success rates in treating their stretch marks the newer they are. Scars and stretch marks created in the last six months respond especially well to laser treatments with a fractional ablative radio-frequency pixel laser. However, Dr. Ghozland can treat all stress-related marks at any stage of appearance.
Treatments take place in Dr. Ghozland’s tranquil Santa Monica office, located four blocks from the ocean. For more information, or to set up a free initial consultation, please call Dr. Ghozland’s office at (310) 393-9359.