Even if you’ve never really thought much about the condition of your skin, becoming pregnant may change all that. Your face may take on an entirely different “glow”; tiny veins may start appearing on your cheeks and chest, and for some reason you feel as if you’re revisiting your adolescence when pimples start appearing out of nowhere. Don’t feel you’re imagining all this.
Skin changes during pregnancy are common and although most of them can be grouped into the category of normal, it’s still useful to have some understanding of what causes them and what you can to limit them.
What causes skin changes during pregnancy?
The general culprit is hormones, in particular increases in estrogen and progesterone. During pregnancy, these are the primary hormones which cause the widespread changes which are necessary to support a baby towards maturity. Their levels and secretion cannot be controlled or influenced in any particular way by a pregnant woman.
Though it’s common for pregnant women to experience an increase in their skin’s oil production, some women find the opposite is true. Their skin becomes dry and almost devoid of moisture causing them to feel itchy and uncomfortable.
Treatment for dry skin during pregnancy
There’s no secret to the solution here; moisturize, moisturize and moisturize again. The best time to do this is when your skin is still warm and slightly moist from the shower. Most moisturizers work in the same way by holding the skin’s moisture within the cells and limiting water loss through evaporation.
There’s a huge range to choose from but essentially, most moisturizers will do the same job.
For women who have eczema, pregnancy can exacerbate symptoms. Red, dry, itchy and scaly skin patches may need more attention when it comes to moisturizers.
Avoid long hot showers and wearing artificial fibers next to your skin. Sitting in front of a heater and overheating in bed can also lead to a worsening of eczema symptoms. The best way to avoid eczema flare-ups is to maintain the skin’s integrity and hydration in the first place.
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