What is Puberty?
Puberty is the time of life when the sex glands become functional. A child’s body undergoes a series of physical changes that transform him or her into an adult having the capacity of sexual reproduction. The whole process is brought about by the hormonal signals coming from the brain toward the sex glands. As a result, the ovaries (girls) and testes (boys) produce hormones that encourage libido and the transformation, function and growth of the bones, sexual organs, muscle, brain, blood, hair, skin, hips and breasts. The growth of weight and height speeds up in the first half of puberty, and is finished when the development of the kid’s body reaches its final stage of the adult form.
When Does Puberty Start?
The statistics say that girls begin puberty when they are around 10 or 11 years old while boys start at ages 11 -12 years old. Completion of puberty for both girls and boys are around ages 15-17 years.
During puberty, stretch marks are a normal aftermath of a growth spurt. When boys and girls pack on weight rapidly during puberty, they get stretch marks as a consequence of stretched skin. They look like linear streaks in colors pink, red and blue with purple undertones. Stretch marks fade in time although it may take years before their color becomes less distinguishable.
Stretch marks develop because the skin expands during growth spurts. Human skin is naturally elastic; however when the stretching is excessive, the collagen that constitutes the connective tissue in the dermis is disrupted. As a consequence, formation of scars occurs and they are called stretch marks.
Effect of Stretch Marks Due to Puberty on a Male Body
If you begin to notice stretch marks appearing in different parts of your body, just relax. You are not the only boy or girl who experiences the phase of stretch marks during puberty. In boys, adipose tissue deposits are greater in shoulders, thighs, arms and abdomen and lower back. The incidence of stretch marks increases* if boys gain rapid weight. Although it is normal to gain a few pounds during puberty because the sizes of some body parts increase*, more than 2 lbs. of weekly weight gain is not normal.
Effect of Stretch Marks Due to Puberty on a Female Body
The females are more vulnerable to getting stretch marks during puberty mainly because they are less physically active and they tend to experience carbohydrate craving during the pre-menstrual period. Stretch marks are prevalent in a girl’s abdomen, thighs, hips, and upper arms, buttocks and breasts. Stretch marks are a huge cosmetic issue for girls, and this problem gets magnified on summers where bathing suits are a staple in every girl’s wardrobe.
How to Make Stretch Marks Less Noticeable?
Stretch marks are inevitable during puberty. Boys and girls eventually get a dose of stretch marks on their bodies. To cover up stretch marks, they do not have to ask their parents a fortune for laser therapies and chemical peeling. There are three methods that help make your stretch marks look less prominent.
- Use sunless self-tanners instead of going to tanning salons and regular tanning lotions. No matter how long you expose yourself under the sun, stretch marks are not going to tan. By applying sunless self-tanners, you are evening out the tone of your entire body. This is a great trick in concealing your stretch marks. If you prefer to single out the area of stretch marks, you can make sure of body makeup. Choose a waterproof concealer that has the same tone as your skin color.
- Choose a wardrobe that hides your stretch marks. For example, stretch marks in the abdomen would be well hidden in a one-piece bathing suit. For boys, they can opt for board shorts instead of the regular swimming trunks to hide stretch marks in the buttocks area.
- Anti-stretch mark creams and lotions are not late in this stage. Although your stretch marks are already there, anti-stretch marks potions have ingredients that specifically are detrimental to the existence of those linear streaks. Although stretch marks eventually fade in time, lotions and creams help stretch marks fade a little bit faster than its natural course.
The growth spurt at puberty is one of the phenomena that lead to the existence of stretch marks. Stretch marks are pinkish, purplish, reddish or bluish linear streaks that appear in various areas of the skin. What happens in puberty that leaves the girls and boys with unappealing stretch marks on their skin? The growth spurt causes body parts to grow and add weight, thereby expanding the skin. Once the skin is stretched beyond its limits, the collagen under the skin is damaged and inflamed, resulting to stretch marks. Stretch marks gained during puberty are most apparent in hips, shoulders, chest, abdomen, thighs and upper arms for both sexes. Concealing them can be done using self-tanning lotions and waterproof makeup. Anti-stretch marks creams will help fade the stretch marks faster than usual.