Cosmetic Dermatology and Skin Care for Plano, Frisco, and the Dallas Fortworth metroplex in Texas
Stretch marks are a fact of life, and everyone who has them always asks, “How can I get rid of stretch marks?”
Stretch marks are a very common occurrence affecting more than 70% of the adult population. They can result from rapid or extreme weight gain and/or loss or just from normal growth spurts. They are also very commonly seen when the skin is stretched from pregnancy.
Treating Stretch Marks
Why Choose Skin MD and Beyond for your treatments? In order to provide the best results, Dr. Wright personally assesses each patient’s skin texture, color, laxity, and scarring and combines lasers with other medical modalities by utilizing the “wRight Integrated Approach.” Through a detailed skin and health history, review of previous treatments and skin examination, she will help assist you in your decision about which treatment will best suit your goals.
- RESURFX LASER RESURFACING
- DERMAPEN MICRONEEDLING
- MICRODERMABRASION / DERMASWEEPS
- CHEMICAL PEELS
- TOPICAL PRESCRIPTIONS
Stretch marks are a form of scarring that occurs just below the skin’s surface (epidermis) in the dermis skin layer and most often are found along the abdomen, thighs, arms, breasts and buttocks. These scars can originally appear pink or red but soon become lighter (hypopigmentation) or darker (hyperpigmentation). However, you don’t have to settle for living with your stretch marks or undergo plastic surgery to treat them as a great many people believe. With new knowledge about stretch marks, there are many treatment options offered by Skin MD and Beyond to effectively treat your stretch marks.
Select The Type of Stretch Mark to Discover Your Treatment Options
THIN WHITE STRETCH MARKS:
- ReSurFX Laser Resurfacing
- DermaPen MicroNeedling
- Topical Prescriptions
ReSurFX Laser Resurfacing
ReSurFX is an FDA approved laser for the treatment of stretch marks. With ReSurFX Laser Resurfacing we are able to address all of the issues inherent in stretch marks. First, we will do a light-to-moderate resurfacing that will help with the loss of pigment and contour issues. Then, we will use a deeper fractional mode – that simulates collagen growth and repairs deep in the skin.
The ReSurFX Laser fractional treatments are effective only when performed in a series of sessions because each session treats only 20 to 25 percent of the skin. By treating micro-island of skin, the surrounding untreated skin drives the healing process, filling in the treated area with healthy, more youthful looking skin. The “fractional” treatment of the skin creates smoother skin without the long-term downtime associated with traditional skin resurfacing technologies.
There are many oils, creams, and lotions that are reported to improve or even prevent stretch marks. While Retin-A has been shown to be marginally effective at reducing the apparent depth of stretch marks, and there are those who swear by treatments with other lotions and potions, most medical experts agree that the claims are mostly hype.
But, with the advent of the use of lasers for cosmetic purposes, though, hope for the treatment of this cosmetic problem seems to have been renewed. Dr. Wright, a laser surgeon who performs many different types of cosmetic laser procedures, notes that patients can receive 50-75% or greater improvement in the appearance of their stretch marks. The great advantage of the ReSurFX Laser is that it can be used on all skin types, which means Hispanic, Asian and African-American patients can receive the same treatment with minimal to no increased risk of pigmentation or scarring.
ResurFX is an excellent choice to safely and effectively minimize the appearance of unwanted stretch marks on the body. The number of treatments needed will depend on the size of the treatment area and severity of the stretch marks, but most patients see noticeable results after 3-4 sessions.
DermaPen MicroNeedling is an advanced micromedical skin needling therapy. It is a procedure which stimulates the skin to regenerate and repair itself naturally and safely, creating smoother, brighter, healthier and younger looking skin. It is an excellent treatment for areas of the body and face to reduce and eliminate scar tissue, stretch marks, and hyperpigmentation.
The physical nature of “skin-needling” breaks up the fibrous and uneven scar/stretch mark tissue and stimulates the growth of new tissue. Currently, there are ablative and non-ablative treatments offered which can heat and damage the epidermis putting it an increased risk of hyperpigmentation. But, DermPen MicroNeedling can be safely performed on all skin colors. There is no risk of post-inflammatory hyperpigmentation as the melanocytes remain intact, like the epidermis, during skin needling.
Prior to any treatment taking place, all patients have a consultation with Dr. Wright. During this assessment, patient expectations are established and Dr. Wright will decide what parameters are best suitable for the treatment and how many sessions should be considered. On the day of the appointment, a local anesthetic cream is applied to the area. This is to ensure that the procedure is as comfortable as possible as some of the areas treated can be a little sensitive to the roller. During the treatment, the roller is quickly moved around the area being treated. The fine needles on the roller penetrate into the tissue of the skin, with very little discomfort.
As Dr. Oz once explained, Stretch Marks are the result of what he refers to as “an inside job” as the damage begins beneath the skin and works its way up to surface. They appear when your skin is stretched suddenly from rapid growth and the strong fibers in the middle layer of your skin (the dermis), which supports your skin’s outer surface (the epidermis) thin and gets over-stretched and some of them even break. Where the fibers break, tiny tears develop and the blood vessels that lie under your skin show through. This is why stretch marks look reddish in color when they first appear.
Some research has shown that prescriptive Tretinoin cream (Retin-A, Renova, Avita) may improve the appearance of recent stretch marks. Tretinoin can improve stretch marks (striae) early on in the evolution of the scar when the color is still pink — those that are less than a few months old. Tretinoin should never be used when pregnant as it causes birth defects and should not be used while breastfeeding. So, unfortunately, most stretch marks are “older” by the time it is safe to use prescriptive creams. Tretinoin works to help rebuild collagen, making the stretch mark look more like your normal skin and it is not effective on older stretch marks. When stretch marks are more than a year old, Dr. Wright will move to the next step like ReSurFX laser Resurfacing of DermaPen MicroNeedling.
What Our Patients Are Saying:
See Dr. Fionna or Dr. Tim. both are fabulous. they give you ideas on how to achieve your desired improvements without any pressure. Competitive pricing, no waiting, flexible schedule. -Tabitha H.
“She is an expert in her field. Her staff was friendly and very helpful in answering all my questions. If you are looking to get any cosmetic procedures I highly recommend making an appointment with Dr. Wright.”
HYPERPIGMENTED or BROWN STRETCH MARKS:
- ReSurFX Laser Resurfacing
- DermaPen MicroNeedling
- Chemical Peels
- Topical Prescriptions
When the dermal fibers stretch and tear and create Stretch Marks melanin cells can become irritated and create hyperpigmentation along the marks. Sun exposure over the years can lead to increase brown patches on the skin that give the skin a more aged and damaged appearance. Removal or lightening of these dark splotches can be addressed in a variety of ways. From skin care and sun protection to chemical peels to a number of different laser treatments – stretch marks can be improved or even eliminated!
ReSurFX Laser Resurfacing
Laser treatments can be helpful for stretch marks and the ReSurFX laser is effective in improving older or depressed or hyperpigmented stretch marks. The ResurFX laser system is considered one of the best available treatments for non-ablative fractional resurfacing for the body. Its advanced scanner technology offers deeper dermal laser penetration and can be customized in a fractional pattern for the exact shape of each individual stretch mark – no other laser has this capability! The laser heats tiny columns of tissue on the skin’s surface, stimulating the body’s natural skin cell and collagen regenerative responses. Because of the microscopic laser impact, there is no damage to surrounding healthy tissue, allowing for rapid healing. The result creates a gentle lightening of your brown spots so that the final result appears more natural and achieves a more even skin tone. Chemical peels and bleaching creams are other treatment options but yield much slower and less efficacious results.
As mentioned previously Dermapen MicroNeedling is effective at improving the appearance of thin, white stretch marks (see above). Dr. Wright has done both needling and laser for hyperpigmented stretch marks and has found that both can help – and a combination of both can sometimes provide the best results. The promotion of collagen healing will help with the texture, while a boosting topical treatment applied will help lift the pigment.
Patients are usually recommended to have 6 to 8 procedures within 4-6 weeks of each other. As treatments last for several months and are located on the body, it is extremely important to apply sunscreen on a daily basis to the treated areas. For both laser and microneedling treatments, the skin will be sensitive to sun exposure in between treatments – so sun avoidance and protection is extremely important to prevent further pigmentation from occurring. It is recommended that a high SPF 30 is regularly applied to the skin to optimize and maintain the achieved results for as long as possible – particularly in the spring and summer months.
Microdermabrasion/DermaSweep, Chemical Peels
Microdermabrasion and DermaSWEEP treatments are a superficial type of treatment using very fine crystals of aluminum oxide (microdermabrasion) or customized exfoliating brushes (dermaSWEEP) to remove the dead outer layer of the skin resulting in a smoother skin surface. The procedure takes 30 minutes and patients can immediately return to regular activity. Only the very surface cells of the skin are removed, so no additional wound is created. These procedures can be helpful with fine very superficial skin texture and pigmentation changes. Generally, more than 12 treatments are required.
Chemical Peels use a chemical solution to burn away the fine outer layers (epidermis) of the skin. These topical preparations including lactic acid, glycolic acid and salicylic acid which act to improve skin surface, texture, and pigmentation. The solutions are available in several strengths, depending on the degree of peeling desired. Healing can take from 3-7 days until a new, smoother layer of skin is then formed. Generally, a series of superficial chemical peels can achieve some mild-moderate improvement in superficial texture and pigmentary changes without significant downtime.
Intense Pulsed Light (IPL) Treatment or Photofacials uses multiple wavelengths of light to gently eliminate superficial skin color irregularities. This treatment is best suited to treat pigmentation and vascular changes rather than changes in the skin texture. Most stretch marks can originally appear pink or red but soon become lighter (hypopigmentation) or darker (hyperpigmentation). The benefit of IPL treatments is that it can address both the redness, which represents superficial capillaries and the brown discoloration which is overlying pigmentation in fresh stretch marks. If the stretch mark is no longer discolored and resembles a silver/white hue, a fractional laser ( ResurFX – see above)which focuses on resurfacing is a better option.
SKIN MD and Beyond Medical Skin Care Treatments for Stretch Marks will use products with the highest activity levels available to address multiple skin care concerns. Custom preparations combining a wide range of enzymes, hydrators and polyhydroxy acids are used to treat each individual’s pigmentation concerns.
Under the direction of Dr. Wright, your aesthetician will create a customized Medical Skin Care Program for your daily home regimen consisting of medical grade skin care products to optimize treatment effects and maintain good results. Programs are customized for each patient to ensure they are using the best products for their individual skin care needs.
Prescription Medications may also be prescribed by Dr. Wright as part of the wRight Integrated Approach and our multifaceted approach to maximize results in a short period of time.
RED or VASCULAR STRETCH MARKS:
The vascular discoloration of stretch marks is best treated with the PhotoFacial or IPL- Intense Pulse Light Treatments. IPL will close off any superficial capillaries causing the redness and will reduce pigmentation as well.
At Skin MD and Beyond, we use the most advanced technology from Lumenis (the inventors of Photofacial). Our machine allows us to create a customized program for each patient, depending on depth, size and amount of vascularity that exists within each stretch mark. This unique selectivity provides effective and reliable results!
Call today for your consultation at (972) 608-0808 or complete a Contact Form here! Skin MD & Beyond proudly serves Plano, Frisco, and the Dallas Fortworth metroplex in Texas.