Stretch marks are common and there’s not much you can do to avoid them or treat them. Some people get them and others don’t. Whether you get stretch marks or not can depend on your skin type – some people just have more elastic skin that can stretch easily without leaving a mark.
Skin is made up of three main layers – the epidermis (outer), the dermis (middle) and the subcutis (inner). Stretch marks happen when the middle layer of the skin is stretched and breaks. Mums-to-be who put on more than the average amount of weight and those who have twins or more are also more likely to get them.
Creams that claim to prevent or stop stretch marks are unlikely to have any effect. They won’t prevent the skin breaking because they can’t reach the middle layer or dermis.
Stretch marks will fade over time after your baby is born.
If you’re struggling with morning sickness, or finding it hard to get up in the morning, breakfast is probably way down your list of priorities in pregnancy. We look at why it’s worth getting up for.
Now that you’re pregnant, it’s important to eat well. Good nutrition will keep you healthy and help your baby grow and develop.
Smoking in pregnancy is harmful to your baby. Quitting is one of the best things you can do to protect your baby’s health through pregnancy and beyond.
You don't have to stop having fun now you're pregnant - but there are a few things you'll have to give up. Alcohol is one of these things, because it can damage your growing baby.
Although it’s normal to have periods of worry and stress when you’re pregnant, some women have feelings that don’t go away and this can be a sign of something more serious.
People may tell you that pregnancy is a good time to put your feet up. If your pregnancy is uncomplicated it is actually much healthier for you and your baby to exercise while pregnant.
1. Macdonald S, Magill-Cuerden J (2012) Mayes’ Midwifery, 14th edition, London, Ballière Tindall
2. NHS Choices [accessed 10 February 2015] Stretch marks in pregnancy. Review: 17 July 2016:http://www.nhs.uk/Conditions/pregnancy-and-baby/pages/stretch-marks-pregnant.aspx#close .
3. Brennan M, Young G, Devane D (2012) ‘Topical preparations for preventing stretch marks in pregnancy’, Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews 11: CD000066: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23152199Hide details