What Are The Best Essential Oils For Stretch Marks?
The Causes Of Stretch Marks
Each and every single person on the planet may, at one point or another in their lives, deal with stretch marks. Like puberty, weight gain, and in some cases, muscle gain, stretch marks are commonly considered to be something that everyone just has to deal with – a fact of life that comes from growing up, getting older, and seeing your body change and grow in new ways.
Because of this, it’s easy to think that you’ll be stuck with your stretch marks for life. Thankfully, that notion is not quite true. Though each of us may deal with stretch marks during our lives, there are absolutely ways to fade those stretch marks – and even ways to help reduce their appearance almost entirely.
Stretch marks are sometimes referred to as striae gravidarum, or simply striae. These little scars can occur if your skin is stretched out rapidly – and, similarly, if your skin is shrunk down too quickly.
Think about someone who is dealing with a rapid gain or loss of weight. That person’s body size and shape will be fluctuating quite a bit. Though our skin has some natural elasticity, it can’t always keep up with our change in size, therefore resulting in stretch marks.
It should be noted, of course, that there are factors that may make stretch mark creation a little more common for certain people. Health factors, genetics, and certain periods of growth (such as puberty or pregnancy) can contribute to the creation of stretch marks.
Additionally, specific health issues may cause more stretch marks to appear, or may cause their creation more easily. It’s necessary to speak with a trusted medical professional to appropriately consider the best methods of treatment for your stretch marks, as well as the root of your stretch mark causes.[toc]
Risk factors that may make you a little more likely to get stretch marks run the gamut of different conditions an growth periods in our life. Being overweight, being pregnant, and even having a family history of the scars can greatly lend to your likelihood of having stretch marks. On top of this, though stretch marks affect both men and women, it’s true that women will be more commonly affected by them.
Though everyone may be affected by stretch marks at some point, each of us has a different level of predisposition toward the scars. As noted previously, family genetics and pregnancy are high indicators of whether or not you are the kind of person who will gain stretch marks. As these marks are caused by the breakage of collagen and elastin in the skin, it’s also thought that changes in hormone levels can make a person more likely to see stretch marks throughout their lives.
If you’re someone who will face stretch marks during your life, the most likely times you’ll see them appearing include weight gain or loss, puberty, pregnancy, or during periods of weight training and muscle gain. When these stretch marks first appear, they are likely to show up as a purple or red color due to the visibility of blood vessels underneath the skin. With time, these scars will fade to a pink or silver color.
Where Might Stretch Marks Appear?
There are many places that stretch marks can make an appearance on the body.
- The stomach area is one where stretch marks are commonly known to occur. Pregnancy and weight loss or gain are the most common reasons for stretch mark creation in the area. Both men and women are affected by stretch marks in this particular area. Though our skin does have some elasticity in this area, it is easy for a rapid change in shape or weight to break the collagen underneath the skin and cause stretch marks.
- The breast area is one that can be affected by weight changes very quickly. In fact, it’s thought that the breasts are some of the most easily affected areas of the body when it comes to weight. Because of this, it’s easy for stretch marks to appear during instances of weight gain or pregnancy. While women are the most affected by stretch marks in this area, men can be affected by them as well during periods of weight gain.
- The inner arms are yet another area where stretch marks may occur. Although it’s true that this area may be a less common one for the scars to appear, weight gain or muscle-related gain in this area can cause the skin to have to expand. Typically, though the skin will expand some, it will not be able to do so fast enough to keep up with muscle gain or weight gain. Because of this, stretch marks will occur.
- Stretch marks on the buttocks can occur in both women and men. The rapid stretching of skin due to changes in body shape, weight, or size is typically common in this area during pregnancy, bodybuilding, and/or obesity. However, puberty is considered to be one of the most common causes of stretch marks in this area, as the body is growing quite rapidly during this time.
A History Of Essential Oils
Essential oils have been around for generations, and have been studied for their unique benefits to the human body. Early evidence of essential oils, or aromatic oils, as they’ve been called throughout history, points to the use of these oils not only for healing, but for religious purposes, and specific ceremonies.
It may seem as though the use of essential oils is a more recent development, with several companies selling different essential oils to treat certain ailments. However, these oils have been growing in popularity for thousands of years. Today, essential oils can be found everywhere from your local drugstore to the homes and offices or holistic healers.
Although the use of essential oils has grown in Western popularity, they’ve seen quite the support since some of the earliest points in recorded human history. Though it’s not known when essential oils began to be used specifically for those healing properties, it’s clear that they spread around the world with fervor. In fact, records of the use of essential oils date back to as early as 18,000 B.C.E. Civilizations that have used essential oils for their healing purposes include Egypt, China, India, Greece, Rome, and Persia, among others.
Popular Types Of Essential Oils
When it comes to essential oils, there are several to choose from. The options only expand when it comes to mixing and matching certain essential oils, depending on the benefits that you’re looking for.
Some of the most popular essential oils include those oils such as:
- Bergamot – This citrus-scented oil is taken from the Citrus Beragamia tree, which is found in Southeast Asia, Italy, and the Ivory Coast. This essential oil is often used to treat such symptoms as stress and anxiety.
- Cedarwood – This wood-scented essential oil comes from a tree native to North America: the Juniperus Virginiana tree. This particular essential oil can be used to help with respiratory problems and skin concerns.
- Chamomile – Though most of us know about chamomile’s calming properties from it’s use in tea, this essential oil is extracted from the leaves of the chamomile plant. This essential oil comes with antidepressant properties.
- Eucalyptus – This essential oil comes form the eucalyptus tree, which is native to Australia. This essential oil is a powerful antiseptic and decongestant, and can be used to fight headaches.
- Jasmine – The essential oil of Jasmine is extracted from jasmine grandiflorum, a type of tree that is native to China. In addition to reducing tension, jasmine may help with childbirth and respiratory ailments.
- Peppermint – This essential oil is known for giving its users a little bit of extra energy boost when they need it the most. Peppermint oil, in small doses, can have therapeutic properties that sharpens the focus of the user and aids in digestion.
These are just a few of the most popular essential oils found today. In fact, there are several essential oils that provide different benefits, depending on what you hope to gain from their use.
Uses For Essential Oils
Because there are so many different kinds of essential oils, there are also a myriad of uses for them. Some of the top uses for essential oils include:
- Meditation support
- Respiratory system support
- Skin ailments, such as stretch marks or eczema
- Immune system support
- The calming of night terrors
- Soothing burns, sunburns, and insect bites
- Promoting restful sleep
- Anti-fungla properties
- Support for arthritic pain
- Support for cold sores
- Lessening feelings of anxiety
- Lessening feelings of depression
- Overall mood booster
- Overall energy booster
Essential Oils and Stretch Marks (The Top 8 Essential Oils for Stretch Marks)
Of course, another important use of essential oils is for preventing and treating stretch marks. These natural treatments can help reduce scarring, as well as help fade the bright red or purple coloring of new stretch marks. Additionally, these essential oils can help reduce the visibility of older stretch marks as well.
Though most stretch marks do fade naturally with time, essential oils can be a great way to speed up that process.
As noted earlier, there are several essential oils that have tons of different healing properties. However, not all of them are safe to put on the skin when undiluted. When using essential oils, it’s important to note the concentration of oil you’re going to be using. Additionally, it is a good idea to always consult a trusted medical professional while using any treatment for your stretch marks.
Some of the best essential oils for stretch mark treatment include:
- Argan Oil – This essential oil is one that you might have heard of in relation to hair and makeup products. Argan oil works to help improve the skin’s elasticity, which can help not only fade your current stretch marks, but prevent future stretch marks.
- Bitter Almond Oil – Don’t let the name fool you; this type of almond oil comes from a different almond than the one that you might be used to eating. Bitter almond oil is thought to help reduce the visibility of stretch marks after pregnancy. It should be noted that this essential oil should be used after pregnancy, rather than during pregnancy.
- Bitter Orange Oil – This essential oil is extracted from bitter orange peels. This oil may help condition the skin, as well as make it stronger and tone it. Those with sensitive skin might experience some irritation when using this oil, so make sure to check the level of dilution if you’re planning to use this oil.
- Lavender Oil – This popular essential oil is most commonly used for its calming properties, but it also may help increase the production of collagen and the formation of connective tissue under the skin. This is important to both preventing and treating stretch marks, as the rupturing of collagen is one of the main reasons for the creation of stretch marks.
- Neroli Oil – This essential oil is made from the Citrus aurantium tree – in particular, the flowers of this tree. This essential oil may aid in the lightening of the color of your stretch marks.
- Patchouli Oil – Though this essential oil is most often used as a mood-booster, it has antioxidant properties that can help heal scars such as stretch marks.
- Pomegranate Oil – This oil may have both antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties that can greatly help both the elasticity and thickness of the skin.
- Frankincense Essential Oil – This essential oil is one of the earliest used for the treatment of skin ailments. This essential oil easily absorbs into the skin, bringing with it antioxidants that help maintain skin softness. Keeping the skin soft is key in preventing stretch marks; after all, soft skin is less likely to develop stretch marks than dry skin.
Even though stretch marks may seem like they’re something that you simply have to live with, that doesn’t necessarily need to be the case. In fact, with the use of essential oils, you can not only treat your existing stretch marks, but can prevent future stretch marks.
There are several places in which stretch marks may affect your body. Depending on your lifestyle, you may find that you get stretch marks easier – and, of course, you may have a certain predisposition for stretch marks. In this case, the aforementioned essential oils are definitely something to think about and work into your daily routine. In addition to skin care and the reduction of your stretch marks, several of the uses of these essential oils are great for general, overall health, which may in turn benefit your skin even more.
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