Cracks may occur on the skin due to genetic factors, puberty, pregnancy, hormonal changes and many other reasons. These cracks do not cause more serious physiological or functional problems. However, it is known that they cause serious aesthetic concerns, especially in women. Even though it is not possible to definitively treat skin cracks, their appearance can be improved with some treatment methods.
What is Skin Crack? How is it formed?
In the middle layer of the skin, called the dermis, cracks that occur as a result of excessive stretching are called skin cracks or skin cracks. What causes skin cracks is the weakening of the supporting tissues with excessive stretching. It manifests itself with thinning, weakening and tearing of the skin. Cracks that occur in women, especially during pregnancy, can also be called pregnancy cracks. Even though it does not create a functional defect, treatment is usually requested because it creates an aesthetically unpleasant appearance.
The rupture of elastin and collagen fibers in the dermis, that is, in the middle layer of the skin, causes skin cracks. Physiologically, it can occur during pregnancy or adolescence.
It develops due to reasons such as excess weight gained during pregnancy and hormonal changes during adolescence, elongation and development in muscle structure. In the same way, situations such as constantly gaining and losing excessive weight and doing bodybuilding sports with heavy lifting can also cause skin cracks.
The incidence of skin cracks in people with obesity is over 40 percent. In addition to this, there is a possibility of skin cracks in some diseases or due to the use of systemic cortisone and the use of other drugs.
For instance, Cushing's syndrome or some infectious diseases are likely to cause skin cracks due to tissue damage.
We can make a list of the causes of skin cracks, including the ones we mentioned above:
- Excessive weight gain,
- Exercises that cause rapid and excessive development of muscles,
- Changes in muscle structure depending on the puberty period,
- Changes in hormones
- Contraceptive pills,
- Using cortisone-containing creams or pills for a long time,
- The skin structure is thin and sensitive,
- Cushing's syndrome
- Injuries to the skin,
- Decreased amount of water retained in the body due to insufficient water consumption,
- Genetic predisposition to skin cracks,
- Chronic liver diseases,
- Infectious diseases.
In some cases, skin cracks may develop without any reason. Such skin cracks are called idiopathic skin cracks.
What are the Symptoms of Cracked Skin?
When skin cracks first appear, they usually have a red or purple color. Over time, they become almost the same color as the skin. While skin cracks may develop due to hormones, the areas where skin cracks are seen in men and women may differ. Skin cracks, which are more common in the hips, legs and chest areas in women, are seen in the lower back with the arms and hips in men. Skin cracks usually do not show any symptoms other than a visible change in the skin. However, some intense cracks may itch.
What are the Stages of Skin Crack?
Skin cracks are classified into two groups as stria rubra and stria alba. First-class striae rubra refers to when the crack first appears and the crack is red or purple in color. The second class, stria alba, refers to the period when skin cracks become close to skin color. When examined in a clinical setting, it is seen that there are 4 stages of skin cracks. These 4 stages of skin cracks are defined as follows:
- Stage 1: Skin cracks have just formed.
- Stage 2: The skin cracks begin to turn white. No collapse or opening is observed in the crack area.
- Stage 3: Opening occurs in the cracks and the lines on the skin begin to be evident.
- Stage 4: The crack becomes clear enough to be easily noticed.Treatment in cases of skin cracks differs according to the stage of the crack. That's why a doctor's examination is important.
What are the Skin Crack Treatment Methods?
Skin cracks do not cause any problems or functional disorders that may pose a risk to human health. However, aesthetic concerns, especially in women, may require treatment. Even if it is not possible to completely treat skin cracks, cracks can have a much better appearance. In order for the treatment to be successful, it should be started as early as possible. We can list the most commonly used methods in the treatment of skin cracks as follows:
In the Fractional Laser method, laser beams are sent to the cracked area and under the skin. Thus, the stimulation of healthy tissues that continue to produce collagen is provided. As the collagen production in the region will increase as a result of this stimulation, it helps the cracks to have a much better appearance. In other words, with the stimulation of non-damaged tissues by laser beams, the damaged tissues begin to heal. Fractional Laser method is also used in skin tightening operations along with skin cracks.
In the radiofrequency method, radiofrequency waves are sent to the area where skin cracks occur, using special needles. Just like in the fractional laser method, the tissues of the region that provide collagen production are stimulated and more collagen is produced in the region. The number of sessions in radiofrequency application varies according to the intensity of the crack.
In the dermatherapy method, a device called a dermaroller is used. There are hundreds of micro-sized needles on this device. As these needles pass over the cracks, hundreds of channels are formed in the area where the cracks are located. Then, by applying stem cell extracts to this area, the regeneration of collagen-producing tissues is ensured.
PRP (Planet Rich Plasma)
The blood taken from the person is separated using the Planet Rich Plasma method, and then injected into the area where the skin cracks occur. Thus, it is aimed to renew the cells in the region. A much more effective result can be obtained when the PRP method is used together with the fractional laser method.
Medication and Cream Use
Creams containing vitamin C can be used to support the treatment of stretch marks and increase collagen production. Similarly, drug therapy is also effective in healing cracks. Medication and cream treatment can be used together with other treatment methods.
What You Need to Know About Cracked Skin
The above information will help you to have a general knowledge about skin cracks. Still, some information can help clear more doubts in your mind. We can list this information as follows:
- Even though it is known among the people that herbal products such as cocoa butter, olive oil and almond oil are effective in the treatment of stretch marks, there is no scientific study about it.
- Skin cracks can be healed aesthetically with treatment, but cannot be completely eliminated.
- Skin cracks do not heal on their own.• The earlier the treatment is started, the more effective the result will be.
- Strengthening the collagen and elastin fibers under the skin can prevent the formation of skin cracks.
If you have skin cracks in your body, it is recommended that you see a doctor before applying the methods that are thought to be good for skin cracks among the people.