Stretch marks are damage that occur when the skin is stretched, especially during pregnancy, due to rapid growth of the abdomen, or rapid weight gain. Rapid and sudden stretching causes the middle layer of the skin (dermis) to rupture, and these tears that occur in the middle and lower layers are reflected on the skin surface as cracks. When it first occurs, the cracks appear red depending on the appearance of the veins underneath, and the oil layer formed over time covers it and its colors fade and turn gray.
The formation of cracks depends on the elastic structure of the skin. Some people do not develop stretch marks despite multiple pregnancies or excessive weight gain. A large number of cracks can affect a person’s self confidence, and self-confidence problems can arise, from wearing a bikini and
swimming on vacation to being difficult to establish a new relationship.
Laser treatment is the most effective non-surgical method in the treatment of birth cracks. Two types of laser improve the appearance of stretch marks. Ablative lasers destroy the top layer of skin and non-ablative lasers target the underlying areas of the skin’s surface without destroying the top layer.
Fotona Laser Smooth Technology, which we use in our clinic, is a non-ablative laser.
Fotona Laser stimulates new collagen production by creating localized and controlled damage to the skin. The new collagen production feeds the cracks from the inside out, making the pitting much less noticeable. Although laser therapy cannot completely remove stretch marks, it can improve their appearance to the extent that patients can feel safe wearing a bikini. The cracks are reduced enough to be noticed only when viewed very closely.
In some cases, stretch marks can be healed with as little as 3 sessions of laser therapy, but typically the entire treatment takes 3 to 8 sessions.
Treatment of birth stretch marks with the Fotona Smooth Laser takes between 20 and 40 minutes, depending on the size of the skin area being treated. It is recommended to repeat the applications once a month on average. The procedure has no side effects other than a slight redness. This redness also subsides spontaneously within hours after the treatment. The main point to note is to avoid sun exposure for at least 4 weeks before and 4 weeks after treatment. If it is not possible to protect yourself from the sun, it is appropriate to use sunscreen with a protection factor of at least 30.
Without a recovery period, patients can continue their daily lives immediately after the application. It is recommended to avoid hot bath/shower, sauna, swimming pool, cream, body lotion, perfume and restrictive clothing for 48 hours after treatment.