Sometimes, the skin looks and feels different after birth. Read this article if you are new to the pregnancy world and want to know more about skin after birth.
Skin After Birth Control – Treatment
A few skin issues may erupt after you get off birth control pills. Some appear as acne or rashes, and others show up as discoloration. If you suddenly have acne or rashes after getting off birth control, try the following:
It is a cream, a topical retinoid you can apply on the skin to help treat acne. It does not directly affect the appearance of acne, but it can help slough off dead skin cells. That way, oil has a harder time clogging the pores on your skin. And your skin has the chance to produce new cells for a healthier look.
It may take up to three months for you to begin to see results with tretinoin cream. It may take up to twelve months for the full effects to show in some cases. During this time, you will see gradual improvements in your skin. And continuous use of the cream prevents future episodes of acne breakouts.
Isotretinoin is an acne medication you can take for severe acne cases. While many use it for mild cases, you may find that it is too strong and may come with side effects. However, the medication is quite effective, and you will get results with just one treatment. Otherwise, use several treatments, but only if the acne is severe. Be sure to speak with your doctor and undergo the treatment only under medical supervision.
Consider using the medication, which is a topical antibiotic, to treat acne on your skin after birth control. The antibiotic kills off the bacteria on the skin’s surface, bacteria that can make acne worse.
The medication does not reduce the oil on your skin, but it prevents the infection or inflammation of acne. As a result of its work, the acne does not become cystic or turn to scars. Consider using clindamycin together with tretinoin to treat acne because they work differently. Tretinoin reduces the chances of a breakout, while clindamycin minimizes the severity of the breakout if it appears.
Simple Remedies to Try at Home
Apart from using medications, here are simpler ways to treat acne that occurs as a result of birth control:
1. Drink Tea
Take black or green tea every day. While it does not precisely prevent the occurrence of acne, either tea has anti-inflammatory components that can reduce the severity and irritation associated with acne.
2. Skip Makeup
If it is possible, don’t use makeup for the duration of the acne treatment. Makeup clogs your pores and makes it difficult for the topical acne creams to work on the skin. Plus, it encourages the buildup of oil and creates a good breeding ground for acne-causing bacteria.
However, if you have to use makeup, use non-comedogenic products. They are best for acne skin because they won’t block the pores or cause any blemish.
3. Regularly Wash Your Face
Your face is likely the most affected in this birth control acne journey. So, it is crucial to wash it as regularly as is healthy. Two times a day, use mild soap and water to wash it. If your skin is naturally oily, wash with an acne face wash in the morning and evening.
It is important to note that excessively washing your face every day will strip your skin of protective oils and leave it without a barrier. Consequently, it will become susceptible to bacteria and more susceptible to dryness or even more acne. Therefore, wash your face two times every day, at most, unless otherwise recommended by a dermatologist.
4. Absorb Facial Oil
You may want to carry absorbent sheets to wipe the oil from your face during the day. It helps to reduce the oil and prevent the occurrence of severe acne. If you have an extra busy day, you will find that your skin is oilier than usual, especially in your T-zone. The sheets will clean them off to tide you over until you can properly wash your face.
5. Avoid Hot Places
If possible, stay away from places that heat up, such as kitchens and saunas. The heat will cause the free flow of oil and makes you susceptible to acne. The same applies if you stay in places with oil, such as a kitchen. Oil on your skin will simply add to what is already there and worsen the acne.
6. Shower After a Long Day
Whenever you work out or have a sweaty day, ensure you spend time washing off the grime and sweat in the shower. These make it easy for your pores to clog and encourage acne. Keep our skin as clean and unclogged as possible, especially while treating an acne breakout.
Skin Issues After Birth Control – Remedies
How you treat skin issues after birth control will depend on the problem. Different skin issues occur during the use of birth control. People react differently to birth control, but not everyone has the accompanying side effects on the skin. Some of the issues are discolored skin, dry skin, and acne or rashes.
Birth controls can be a combination of progestin and estrogen or only progestin. Whether you are using a hormonal IUD, pill, ring, mini-pill, implant, shot, or patch, it must contain either a combination of hormones or a single hormone. Some react to progestin, while others respond to a group of hormones called androgens.
Androgens contain progestin, and progestin may have an androgenic effect on some people, such as oily skin and excess hair growth. Other times, it has an anti-androgenic effect, such as hair loss and dry skin.
In light of the above, different treatment methods apply to various issues. If you have dry skin after birth control, it is crucial to moisturize regularly and keep your skin hydrated as much as possible. Avoid hot showers or baths as they will further dry out your skin. Dry skin tends to cause peeling or flakiness, so other accompanying symptoms will disappear when you treat dry skin.
But if you have oily skin after birth control, don’t moisturize as often. That is because you are trying to rid your skin of too much oil. So, using a moisturizer may only worsen it. Also, use a mild cleanser and wash your face at least two times a day. You may opt for toning after cleansing to reduce the oil further.
Use topical creams and antibiotic treatments if you have a breakout or rashes. Your dermatologist is in the best position to recommend one, but you can consider tretinoin for the acne breakout.
If you are using birth control to treat acne, it is best to use a combination method, such as pills, a patch, or an implant. The combination of progesterone and estrogen balances your body’s testosterone and lowers sebum production. This, in turn, helps reduce the occurrence of hormonal acne. Any other birth control method may be counterproductive.
Skin issues after birth control may subside on their own. However, if they are uncomfortable or are a problem for your esteem and general health, see a doctor.
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Itchy Skin After Stopping Birth Control – What It Means and Treatment
It is not normal to have itchy skin after birth control. Sometimes, your skin experiences some dryness after birth control, which may be accompanied by itchiness. However, itchy skin after birth control may also be an autoimmune condition.
Autoimmune progesterone dermatitis is a rare condition where your skin has an autoimmune response to its progesterone. It may manifest as welts, hives, or an eczema-like rash. The only solution is to visit a doctor for an examination. If it is a rare autoimmune condition, you can begin treatment immediately.
Is It Normal to Have Itchy Skin After Giving Birth?
It is normal to have itchy skin after giving birth. Your body undergoes a lot of changes during and after your pregnancy, and a primary one is in the hormones. Hormonal changes cause skin dryness and dry skin itches. The itching tends to resolve by itself and is not harmful.
But a few times, it is accompanied by welt-like appearances, and the itching is usually severe in such cases. You may have PUPP or PEP. Though it can be uncomfortable, it is harmless and easy to treat.
PUPP stands for pruritic urticarial papules and plaques of pregnancy, while PEP stands for polymorphic eruptions of pregnancy. It may develop on your skin if you are pregnant for the first time, appearing in the 3rd trimester. It disappears some weeks after giving birth. On rare occasions, it occurs after birth. You will know whether or not it is PUPP if there is raised skin. Otherwise, it is not PUPP.
An oral antihistamine like Benadryl can treat PUPP. Topical and systemic corticosteroids may also work, especially if the itching is severe. But systemic corticosteroids may be harmful to the baby if you are breastfeeding. Consider using emollients to trap moisture in the skin to reduce itching. However, do not self-medicate. Always visit your doctor for prescriptions, especially if it is PUPP.
If it is not PUPP, these treatments may not work. Keeping your skin as hydrated as possible will reduce the itching. And it will eventually stop as your hormones return to normal levels.
How to Fix Loose Skin After Pregnancy
The following are some helpful tips to fix loose skin after pregnancy:
1. Exercise Regularly
Developing a workout routine is probably the first and best advice you will receive to tighten loose skin after pregnancy. Cardio exercise routines usually tone your muscles and burn fat without wearing you out. So, brisk walk, swim or jog as often as possible.
If you have been strength training before giving birth or you want to start, you can also combine it with cardio routines. Strength training will help build the muscles under your skin to fill up the loose skin. Push-ups and sit-ups are some of the routines to try. However, your doctor must give you the go-ahead before you can begin any routine, no matter how light.
2. Eat Well
To regain tight skin, eating well is crucial. You cannot afford to eat whatever you like. Try to draw up a meal plan that allows you to eat a lot of protein and healthy fats. Protein will cause the body to produce more collagen, improving the skin’s elasticity. Plus, as a breastfeeding mother, you need more protein than usual. Fats will help you build muscle to occupy the space under the loose skin.
3. Keep Hydrated
Drinking water, at least eight glasses every day, hydrates the skin to create elasticity. Also, your body can burn fat better and lower your stomach’s water retention, which can cause bloating. Moreover, you improve your general well-being when you drink a good amount of water.
4. Try a Skin Wrap
A skin wrap will detoxify your skin, leaving it softer and tighter. But the results are usually temporary, so you may want to combine the treatment with other methods for better and longer-lasting results.
5. Use Skin Firming Products
Though many skin firming products parade as effective, not all deliver the results they claim. Consult your dermatologist for the best products if you are going that route. Products that contain retinoids, vitamin C, and collagen may help to tighten the skin in the long run.
6. Go for Oil Massages
Carrier oils such as jojoba may help to firm up the skin. You can mix it with an essential oil like neroli for a better result. Several plant-based oils have the reputation of repairing the skin. So, while using other methods, consider adding oil massages to the treatment for loose skin.
The Option of Surgery
You can elect to go for surgery if none of the above methods works or you want quicker results. Abdominoplasty is one option you can try, though it can be quite pricey. But you will get faster and more permanent results because the excess will be removed, automatically firming up the skin.
Bumps on Skin After Pregnancy – Treatment
You may have postpartum hives if you find bumps or rashes on your skin after pregnancy. You may find them in different areas, particularly the stomach, neck, face, chest, and arms. They will look red, pink, or just your skin color. They may also look like patches or welts, roughening the skin and looking like eczema.
If you notice any of the above or more, try an anti-itch cream, allergy shots, or an antihistamine. You can also take a steroid medication or use a steroid cream. However, you don’t necessarily have to treat post-partum hives; they tend to go away independently. So, unless you have severe discomfort, the hives don’t need medical attention.
There are home remedies to try without using any medical help. Apply aloe vera gel to the affected skin areas after taking a cool bath. Shea or cocoa butter also works in soothing the itchy skin. And if you are allergic to anything, avoid it, so it does not aggravate the hives. Additionally, don’t wear tight clothing; loose clothes made from cotton or other breathable fabrics work best.
Skin-like Discharge After Birth – What to Do
When you have a vaginal delivery, you will notice a vaginal discharge that is dark red. It is called lochia and lasts for about three days. It is usually thick, like blood clots. From the fourth day, the color of the discharge changes to brown or pink and becomes watery.
It lasts until the tenth day, when the discharge becomes even more watery and changes to yellow or cream. This last part will continue until the fourteenth day. If you underwent a cesarean section, you might not notice much lochia as someone who delivered vaginally. But the discharge is pretty normal and disappears without help.
How to Get Rid of Skin Discoloration After Pregnancy
Skin discoloration resulting from pregnancy tends to go away on its own after a few months. Some even fade after a few weeks; it depends on the skin type. However, if you need faster results in getting rid of the discoloration, talk to your dermatologist for possible medical treatment.
You can help by using adequate sunscreen whenever you have to go out under the sun. Also, use gentle cleansers and creams, and generally take good care of your skin. If you are using contraceptives, try switching them for others. Estrogen-filled contraceptives may cause melasma, which is skin discoloration. And if you already have it, the contraceptives may make it worse.
Medically, your dermatologist may recommend using hydroquinone, tretinoin, topical treatment combination, or even undergoing a chemical peel. If the discoloration is severe, you may have to use laser treatments. Let your doctor know if you are breastfeeding or getting pregnant again soon before undergoing any treatment.
White Patches on Skin at Birth – What It Means
Newborns often have white patches on their skin at birth. The patches look like small white spots, and they are called milia. You may see the same spots on the babies’ gums and roofs of the mouth. But it is normal and will resolve within a few weeks.
However, if you are concerned about the look on your baby’s skin, talk to your doctor. There probably won’t be much to do about it because of the baby’s tender skin. But you will know how to treat the skin until the patches fade.
Prepare to see some changes in your skin after birth. The changes usually begin while you are pregnant and increase the older the pregnancy gets. After delivery, your skin begins to get better, and it may take months before it goes back to normal. And if you use birth control, you are likely to see some changes, too.
There are ways to help the skin look and feel better during this period, and we have listed some of them. However, it is crucial to consult your doctor before using any treatment method, no matter how mild. This is especially true if you are breastfeeding or pregnant again.