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Stretch marks, medically known as striae, are a type of scar that develops when our skin stretches or shrinks too quickly. They may be a source of cosmetic concern for patients as they are unsightly and can reduce self-confidence. At the Canadian Dermatology Centre in Toronto, we have a team of board-certified dermatologists and expert skin care aestheticians to provide a comprehensive treatment options for unsightly stretch marks. We have the extensive skills and knowledge to assess each patient and offer a tailored treatment approach.

What are stretch marks?

When our skin stretches or shrinks too quickly, as is often the case during pregnancy or after massive weight loss, the collagen and elastin in deep tissue layer of the skin gets ruptured. As the damaged skin heals, stretch marks first appear as asymmetric, raised lines and red-purple in colour (striae rubra), eventually flattening and diminishing to white colour (striae alba) with time, making them less noticeable.

Who gets stretch marks?

Stretch marks occur in areas of the body where skin is subjected to continuous and progressive stretching. If you are developing or have developed stretch marks, you are most likely to do so during these times:

  • During pregnancy on abdomen and breasts
  • Adolescents undergoing rapid growth spurts during puberty
  • Rapid weight loss or gain
  • Rapid muscle gain and growth

What are my treatment options?

It is important to understand that stretch marks, just like any scars, are permanent and currently, there is no effective treatment available. Stretch marks occurring in adolescents become less visible over time and usually don't require any interventions. In other cases, however, there are treatment options that can be tried to make them less noticeable if they are of a significant cosmetic concern to the patient, but these have not been proven to be effective.

Some of these treatment options are:

  • Moisutrizers
  • Topical retinoid therapy
  • Chemical peels
  • Skin needling

Best treatment available today is prevention.

One important point to consider

if you are pregnant or breastfeeding, make sure to consult with one of our dermatologists before treating stretch marks as some products used for treatment contain ingredients, such as retinol, that can harm your baby.

Take the next step

If you have stretch marks that are bothering you then book a consultation today with one of our Toronto board-certified dermatologists to see what we can do for you.

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Ontario-wide Stay at Home Order April 7th Update

As a valued member of the Canadian Dermatology & Plastic Surgery Centre, we want to personally update you on steps our practice has taken to protect you and your health in light of the COVID-19 situation.

As it has always been, the safety and health of our patients and staff members remain our highest priority. We want to thank you for your support and the confidence you have in our practice. In response to the coronavirus (COVID-19), we have taken the guidelines from the Ministry of Health and have added the following extra measures to protect our patients:

  1. A COVID-19 screening questionnaire must be completed prior to your appointment.
  2. Patients must arrive wearing their own face masks, and continue to wear them in office until taken into the exam room, and sanitize their hands upon arrival.
  3. We have spaced out the waiting room area and decreased our daily patient volume to reduce the likelihood of crowding.
  4. We have installed plastic barriers at the front desk for the safety of our staff and patients.
  5. Social distancing is seen as the most effective way of slowing the spread of the virus causing COVID-19. Patients should avoid close contact, minimize interaction, and put distance between themselves and other patients within the office.
  6. We will continue to provide virtual consultation options to patients who would like to see our doctors virtually.
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Thank you for being a loyal patient. We will remain attentive to this situation and keep you updated on any changes with the practice.

- The CDPSC Team