Stretch marks are not just a problem for pregnant women and overweight people, as many teenagers can attest. Teens often find stretch marks on their thighs, breasts and abdomen, among other areas. Sometimes stretch marks are caused by growth spurts and cannot be avoided. So how do you get rid of stretch marks?
Stretch marks are difficult to remove. Beyond cosmetic surgery, which is not an option for most teens, the goal for teenagers should be to reduce and prevent stretch marks. Some teens have had success reducing stretch marks with cocoa butter. Use cocoa butter regularly to help prevent stretch marks from developing, because it keeps the skin elastic and healthy. If you are a pregnant or breastfeeding teen, check with your doctor before using cocoa butter or any other lotions or creams because they may contain ingredients that could be passed to your baby.
Taking daily doses of vitamins A, E and C will help to increase the elasticity and strength of collagen in your skin and prevent stretch marks from ever forming. Teens should take a 300 I.U. dose of vitamin A, a 400 I.U. does of vitamin E and a 500 mg dose of vitamin C daily.
Although it cannot completely remove stretch marks, Retin-A can significantly reduce them. According to the May 1996 Archives of Dermatology, Retin-A (Tretinoin) in a 0.1-percent cream reduced the stretch marks of those in the study who had fresh stretch marks. This is good news. Because of teens' young age, most stretch marks are fresh and can easily be treated with Retin-A.
Apply the vapor rub to a soft towel or washcloth, and forcefully rub it into the stretch marks every night for a month. Although the stretch marks will probably never disappear completely, they should begin to show signs of fading.
Vitamin E is sold in sticks and gels and has been found to reduce the appearance of many kinds of scars, including stretch marks. The sticks and gels are very oily, so you may want to apply it to your stretch marks when you plan to be home for a few hours. Rub the vitamin E directly onto the stretch marks, and let the skin absorb the vitamin. If you apply the vitamin E regularly for two weeks, you should begin to see the stretch marks beginning to fade.