Stretch marks are a very common problem for both men and women. Causes can be weight fluctuations, pregnancy, exercise or heredity. Sometimes teenagers will also experience some stretch marks during puberty after a sudden growth spurt.

Stretch marks, particularly those from pregnancy, that occur on the belly can be extensive, deep and very noticeable. Since stretch marks occur in the deep layers of the skin, which makes treatment difficult, over-the-counter creams aren’t very effective, because they only penetrate the outer layers of the skin.

WHAT CAUSES STRETCH MARKS?

Stretch marks happen when the skin is stretched to excess and the fibers in the dermis break, leaving visible scars. Stretch marks most often occur on the abdomen, hips, thighs, buttocks and breast, but can be found many places on the body. Some stretch marks disappear by themselves and, in some cases, less severe stretch marks can be treated using lasers or micro-needling treatments.

The most common cause of significant scarring from stretch marks is pregnancy. For these deep stretch marks that appear following pregnancy, the most effective way to get rid of them, is a tummy tuck.

TUMMY TUCK VS LASERS

A tummy tuck, or an “abdominoplasty,” removes excess skin and fat, tightening the abdominal muscles. With this procedure, you are able to get rid of the stretch marks on the lower abdomen, as well as any loose skin. Surgical removal of stretch marks can be done on numerous areas of the body in conjunction with a lifting procedure, such as an arm lift, thigh lift, back lift or breast lift. Lasers, and topical options, may be effective to fade stretch marks and may be the best treatment in some cases. At Gulf Coast Plastic Surgery, we offer a fractional laser that is approved for the treatment of stretch marks. For stretch marks on other parts of the body (like arms and hips) our non-ablative fractional laser can be a good treatment option.

If your stretch marks bother you, schedule a consultation with one of Gulf Coast Plastic Surgery’s award-winning plastic surgeons, Dr. Peter Butler or Dr. Jocelyn Leveque.

Get a tummy tuck quote with our Cost Estimator.