Your skin is designed to undergo many changes while you are pregnant. Firstly, stretch marks begin to form on your once flat and flawless belly. An increase in blood production will make your skin begin to glow. Excess secretion of oil may cause acne and breakouts. And finally, you may also deal with dry skin during pregnancy.
It is quite common for women who are pregnant to complain of skin dryness. This is because hormone changes will cause your skin to lose its moisture and elasticity as it stretches and gradually tightens to accommodate a growing baby and belly.
This can lead to itchiness, flaky skin, or other symptoms that are often associated with skin dryness. Most women will most likely experience dry, itchy skin in their stomach area. But it is not rare for some pregnant women to also feel itchiness in places such as:
During the third trimester, it is also common for some pregnant women to develop itchy red bumps on their bellies.
If you are one of those experiencing dry skin, below are some of the natural remedies that will help keep your skin feeling hydrated.
Natural Moisturizer from the grocery store
Some of the products you buy to store in your kitchen as recipe ingredients can equally double as moisturizers. Coconut oil and olive oil provide intense moisture to the skin and are also packed with antioxidants.
You will only require a couple of coconut oil or olive oil droplets to rub on your dry skin for moisture. Try applying it to damp skin to prevent a greasy feeling.
Shea butter and cocoa butter are also useful natural alternatives to the regular drugstore moisturizers. Though cocoa butter is known to be edible, you need to avoid eating any product that is designed for topical application.
Mix up your own bath soap
Stay away from regular soaps and body washes that contain harsh substances such as alcohol, dyes, or fragrances, which can cause irritation to the skin. Instead, try to mix 1 part apple cider vinegar with two parts of water for an all-natural cleanser that can help restore your skin’s pH levels and also fix dry skin.
You can also mix some drops of raw honey, moisturizing coconut oil, and liquid Castile soap to form your own homemade bath soap. This will help to leave your skin feeling fresher and smoother than ever. But do well not to go overboard on how much of this you apply.
Just use the right amount to remove oil and dirt. You never want to make the mistake of overburdening your skin with the product.
Try some yogurt
Yogurt is delicious and also rich in protein and lactic acid. They help to hydrate and detoxify your skin. They also help to get rid of dead skin cells, tighten your pores, and also make you look younger by lessening the appearance of fine lines.
To use yogurt on your skin, simply massage a thin layer into your skin using your fingertips and then leave it on for between two or three minutes. Once you are done, gently cleanse with warm water and then carefully pat to dry off with a towel.
Take a milk bath
Milk baths are one additional dairy-based solution for those looking to pamper their skin and also soothe dry skin. Just like yogurt, milk has natural lactic acid that can help to eliminate dead skin cells and also hydrate the skin.
In order to make a homemade milk bath, mix 2 cups of whole powdered milk with 1/2 cup of baking soda and 1/2 cup of cornstarch. Pour the entire mixture into your bathwater. For those who are vegan, there are other alternatives, such as rice, coconut, or soy milk.
According to suggestions from the American Pregnancy Association, it is recommended that bathwater should be warm instead of being hot and that pregnant women should reduce their time in the shower to 10 minutes or less.
Try to limit your shower time
You may be tempted to spend a lot of time in the shower, but spending too long in a hot shower can be overly drying for your skin. It is almost common knowledge that hot water can rid your skin of all its natural oils. Try only to use warm water, and do well to limit your time in the shower so that you can keep your skin hydrated.
I am concerned about my dry skin. Is that necessary?
Because of changing estrogen levels, it is normal to experience some itching, especially on your palms. But make sure that you go to the doctor if you begin to experience severe itching on the feet and hands.
Also, be in the lookout for other symptoms such as:
- Appetite loss
- Light-colored stool
- Dark urine
All of these may be physical and psychological symptoms of intrahepatic cholestasis of pregnancy (ICP). In simple terms, ICP is best defined as a pregnancy-related liver disorder that is known to affect the normal flow of bile.
It is a cause for worry because it can be dangerous for the baby and even lead to premature delivery or stillbirth. Pregnancy hormones will alter the function of the gallbladder, causing the flow of bile to slow or stop.
This can lead to the buildup of bile acid that spills into the blood. According to data made available by the American Liver Foundation, one to two of all 1000 pregnancies in the United States are affected by ICP. Cholestasis will often disappear within a few days of delivery.
It is essential that any new skin changes that is noticed with itching should be reported and evaluated by your doctor. Sometimes you may notice lesions, such as red bumps on your belly or in the surrounding parts of your belly button. If you do, make sure to tell your doctor.
They may be able to prescribe a topical cream that will treat the irritation and relieve the itching. Also, make sure to stay hydrated by drinking enough water. While pregnant, you will urinate a lot, and you will need to take in as much liquid as you can to stay hydrated.