Body Changes

Your body is going to change a lot during pregnancy, and it may take a long time after for you to bounce back into shape. But even when you do, you probably won’t look quite like you did before the baby.


The Belly

Stretch Marks

The most common aesthetic concern for pregnant women is stretch marks. Stretch marks are scars that form when your skin is stretched too quickly to heal itself. They are red or pink when they first appear, but they eventually fade. However, even after the color has faded, the texture of the skin is still scarred.

Whether or not you get stretch marks depends largely on your genes. Some women will get them no matter what they do, and other women never get them at all.

Some companies claim to sell lotions or creams that will keep you from getting stretch marks, but clinical studies suggest that these don’t really do much, if anything. The best you can do to prevent stretch marks or at least prevent them from being more severe is to keep your skin hydrated with any regular lotion, keep your body hydrated by drinking lots of water, and eat healthily to help your body (and therefore skin) heal itself.


Loose Skin

Even if you don’t get stretchmarks, your skin will still be very stretched out from your pregnancy. After you give birth, it may take a long time for the skin to bounce back to normal. In fact, it may never quite bounce back. Loose skin can’t be taken care of with exercise, and so you may end up frustrated if you find yourself exercising a lot and eating healthily but still staring in the mirror at a little pooch in the tummy area. Unfortunately, if this skin doesn’t go away on its own, there isn’t really anything that will get rid of it except surgery. Don’t beat yourself up about it though. It’s hard to go from the body of a regular teenager to the body of a mother so quickly — it can really be confusing and frustrating — but it’s natural and beautiful as well.


Separation of Ab Muscles

Now this is where it gets a little weird. You know those muscles that make up six packs? When a woman is pregnant, those ab muscles of hers will sometimes separate a little because of the pressure against them. This can make it hard to get a fit tummy again after pregnancy, but here is a web site outlining what exercise to avoid and which exercise to do to fix this problem: Abdominal Separation

Other

Bladder Issues

During pregnancy, our body makes space for the baby partially be stretching the skin… but also partially by squeezing all the organs into a smaller space than normal. This includes the bladder. Don’t be surprised if you leak a tiny bit of pee when sneezing or laughing while pregnant.

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