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Discover how to care for your skin during pregnancy here.
Your body goes through a multitude of changes when you’re pregnant. With hormone levels fluctuating – and your growing baby taking up a large proportion of daily nutrients – skin can become dull and dry, often making that “pregnancy glow” seem like a complete myth.
Dry, itchy skin, and chapped lips often occur throughout these nine months. As the skin stretches during pregnancy, the skin barrier can become compromised which allows for more moisture to escape. This can cause your skin to become thinner and dryer. Fluctuating hormone levels can also have a negative impact on the condition of your skin when pregnant. If you’re worried about the causes – always consult your doctor who may have suggestions on how to combat them – and here’s a handy guide to some dry skin issues you may experience while you’re expecting.
- Dry Skin and Pregnancy
During pregnancy, doctors will tell you that everything you eat and drink contributes to your baby’s development, meaning your body will require more fluids and nutrients to cope with the demand. Naturally, you might find your skin shows signs of dehydration, such as dry, flaky patches of skin on the face and body. Fortunately, there are simple ways to help treat dry skin in pregnancy:
•Moisturize regularly. A product like Vaseline® Jelly is great if you’re experiencing dry skin when pregnant as it creates a sealing barrier to lock in moisture. This is great for protecting your skin against the elements – dry air from cold weather conditions can make dry skin worse. The jelly will seal in moisture to prevent the skin from drying out more. By locking in moisture it will also help speed up the skin’s natural regeneration process to help heal dry skin.
•Stay away from irritants that could exacerbate dryness. Using a gentle soap, and mild skincare products that are fragrance-free may help.
•Staying hydrated is a good way for everyone to promote good health from the inside out, including skin health. Your doctor may recommend that you drink plenty of water.
- Itchy Skin in Pregnancy
As your baby grows, your skin will stretch to accommodate your bump (often stretch marks will appear as the skin stretches – click here for tips on how to care for skin prone to stretch marks). Alongside increased blood flow to the skin, hormonal fluctuations, and lack of hydration, this can often lead to dry itchy skin on the breasts and belly as your skin struggles to retain moisture as it stretches.
If you are experiencing itchiness, consult your doctor. Your doctor can recommend a treatment specifically designed for itchy skin when pregnant. Tips your doctor may recommend:
•Take cool or lukewarm showers or baths to soothe the skin – hot water can make itching worse, as it strips the skin of its natural oils.
•Wear loose clothing to prevent rubbing.
•Use a good moisturizer, like petroleum jelly, to protect the skin and help prevent further irritation from dryness – Vaseline® Jelly, the original “Wonder Jelly”, is triple-purified and is 100 percent hypoallergenic. Recognized by the •National Eczema Association as suitable for people with eczema and sensitive skin, Vaseline® Jelly Original is great for locking in moisture to help dry skin heal.
•Although it can be hard, try not to scratch. Scratching can break the skin and make the itchiness associated with dryness worse.
- Chapped Lips During Pregnancy
Since the body tends to retain more fluid, the surface of the skin often suffers from lack of moisture – making chapped lips during pregnancy a common problem. To help moisturize and soothe chapped lips:
•Choose a lip balm that moisturizes and soothes. A product made from petroleum jelly, like Vaseline® Lip Therapy® Original, is an ideal option. The jelly helps lock in moisture to help moisturize and banish dry, flaky lips.
•Avoid licking your lips. A common misconception is that this can add moisture to your lips, but as your saliva evaporates it may take more moisture from your skin.
•Protect from the elements. Cold, dry air and winds can cause lips to dry out even more. Apply a layer of Vaseline® Jelly before going outside to help keep your lips hydrated and protected.
An increase in sensitive skin during pregnancy is common, so if you’re suffering from dry, itchy skin, or chapped lips, your doctor may tell you it’s simply part of having a baby. By taking good care of yourself – inside as well as out – you can embrace the experience and look forward to your new arrival.
The advice in this article does not constitute medical advice, it is solely available for information purposes.
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