What Causes Stretch Marks

There are many causes that lead to development of stretch marks.

The most important are:

  • Normal stretch marks during sudden increase in height during puberty. These are due to a sudden stretch to skin and is observed upon rapid growth at puberty.
  • Stretch marks due to rapid weight gain at any age. Stretch marks of this reason is most common during adolescence and in pregnancy.
  • Stretch marks are due to hormonal disorders. Such conditions are the thyroid diseases, diabetes mellitus, hypercortisolemia (e.g. Cushing syndrome) taking hormone replacement therapy. This type of stretch marks also occur in puberty due to hormonal changes that lead to menstrual periods, pregnancy and taking the pill.
  • Stretch marks due to rapid increase in muscle mass. This type of stretch marks occur in the arms, chest and the back mostly to athletes that do body building. Stretch marks are most common in men due to greater expansion capability of the muscular system.
  • Pregnancy stretch marks caused by the rapid increase in uterine size and the strong trend applied to the skin during stretching.Hormonal changes also contribute to the appearance of pregnancy stretch marks.
  • Stretch marks caused because of taking medication. Such cases are the use of chronic topical creams, ointments or lotions containing cortisone. Topical corticosteroids in addition to other side effects, cause skin thinning, decrease healing capacity and occurrence of stretch marks.
  • Also taking continuously corticosteroids (cortisone) medication with oral use or intramuscular injections leads to the appearance of stretch marks in the skin. These stretch marks are very disfigurement with increased width and depth and difficult to treat.
  • Stretch marks by inheritance. There are cases where stretch marks occur without apparent reason, simply because inherited predisposition to stretch marks from one of your ancestors.