One of the all time worst things about being pregnant is definitely the weird stuff that goes on with your skin over those 9 long months. From stretch marks to dry, itchy skin, pregnancy can cause a whole range of issues that you may not be expecting. Luckily, you can learn how to tackle these complaints early on to try and keep some of these pregnancy skin problems at bay.
One of the main frustrations that women have while pregnant is the appearance of unsightly stretch marks. These can show up on your bump, sides, and in all sorts of other odd places too; wherever the skin is being stretched. Whether or not you get them is mostly a question of genetics, with some women being lucky enough to avoid them while others find they appear early on and never budge. To attempt to prevent these annoying tiger stripes, it may be worth trying to keep weight gain within the recommended bounds, but don’t worry about running out and buying expensive lotions and creams as these usually don’t make much of an impact. Staying hydrated will help keep your skin elasticated, and maintaining moisture with lotions will at least help reduce itching.
The hormonal craziness that comes with pregnancy can worsen or trigger pimples, especially if you already struggle with acne. If you were expecting a “glow” but got increased oil production and irritating acne, you’re probably feeling pretty frustrated. Avoid harsh chemicals and the normal acne fighting cleansers as many of these aren’t good for your growing baby. It’s usually best to cleanse skin with mild soap twice a day, and avoid any further skin irritation. If you’re really desperate and want to try a medicated lotion of any kind, make sure you check in with your doctor first.
The normal culprit, hormonal changes, along with stretching, can cause some seriously irritating itching for many pregnant women, especially in the third trimester. Skin sensitivity increases and dry skin can be exacerbated during pregnancy, so try and avoid perfumed soaps and lotions or hanging around too long in hot showers and baths. Cold compresses can bring some relief, as can oatmeal baths or certain sensitive skin lotions. Very rarely, severely itchy skin can indicate a condition called cholestasis, a liver problem that can crop up in pregnancy. If you suspect you might be suffering from this, make sure you contact your doctor or midwife as soon as possible, just to get the all clear.