According to a Yummy Mummy Survey by AC Nielsen Group, 87 percent of new and expecting moms-to-be in India agree that they worry about their physical appearances during and post pregnancy. Moreover, 90 percent of new and expecting mothers agree that stretch marks are one of the most worrisome issues with respect to their looks.
The survey, conducted in metros and non-metros in the country, also uncovered that there are several myths around stretch marks. For instance: 75 percent of respondents believe stretch marks appear only on the tummy.
However, gynaecologist Kiran Coelho says: "It is common to develop stretch marks on the breasts, thighs, hips, lower back and buttocks."
"Stretch marks can appear anywhere on the body, but it is more likely for them to form where larger amounts of fats are stored in the body. Though many of my patients worry about stretch marks, very few are aware of the facts," Coelho said in a statement.
Stretch marks were found to pose not only physical, but social challenges as well. In India, where the traditional sari is worn to most special occasions, 76 percent of the respondents agree that they think wearing one during or post-delivery becomes an embarrassment because of the visibility of stretch marks.
The survey even reveals that 52 percent of new and expecting mothers feel that stretch marks have no cure.
"Pregnancy stretch marks can be prevented by keeping the skin hydrated. Drink sufficient water and eat foods that are rich in Vitamin E such as nuts, citrus fruits, bell peppers, etc. Use a dry oil which has a blend of natural plant extracts such as calendula, lavender, rosemary and chamomile along with Vitamin A and E. Such oils get rapidly absorbed into the skin without leaving behind a residue," Coelho said.