Pregnancy is a beautiful experience during which a woman nurtures and grows a baby for a period of 9 months. During this time, the body experiences many changes both internally and externally as it turns into a space of nourishment and protection for the growing foetus.
Hormonal fluctuations, stretching of the skin, greater storage of fats, etc can also lead to significant and apparent changes in the skin. While many women often feel self-conscious and mourn the loss of their pre-pregnancy skin, it is important to know that these changes are completely normal and that many women feel the way you do! These issues can be managed during pregnancy and also minimised post-pregnancy.
Avoid comparing how your body reacts to pregnancy as it largely depends on factors beyond your control such as your genetics. Having said that, below are some of the most common skin issues that women face during and post-pregnancy with some simple steps that one can take to manage them-
Often known as "the mask of pregnancy," is a pigmentation disorder that is caused by a combination of hereditary, hormonal factors, as well as due to sun exposure. It shows up as mottled dark spots on the cheekbones, forehead, nasal bridge, upper lips and rarely, over the jawline.
How to Tackle It:
a) Sun protection is the most important step to avoid and prevent the worsening of melasma. Physical protection like opaque umbrellas, wide-rimmed hats, the scarf should be used while stepping out in the sun
b) Use liberal amounts of sunscreen with a minimum SPF 30, in the morning, at least 15 minutes before stepping out and repeat it in the afternoon after 3-4 hours. Sunscreen use should not be restricted to only while stepping outdoors or when it's sunny but also while indoors. Remember to use only physical sunscreen during your pregnancy and breastfeeding period.
c) Using skin lightening products that contain kojic acid, glycolic acid and vitamins C, E, and A in lower concentrations can assist to brighten and rejuvenate your complexion.
Stretch marks affect around 90 percent of women at some point in their life, with pregnancy being one of the most prevalent times when this occurs. These marks, reddish-purple scars become white over time and are produced by the damage to its elastic fibres when it is stretched due to weight increase. These are particularly noticeable on the abdomen after delivery.
How to Tackle It:
a) Prevention is better than cure. Start using moisturising lotions containing cocoa butter and Shea Butter during pregnancy itself and continue to post your delivery.
b) Massages will also enhance the elasticity of the skin, however, do take care to do it gently.
c) In the initial stages, the stretch marks are red in colour (striae rubra) and these respond best to treatment, so do visit your dermatologist early.
d) Various cosmetic procedures like lasers, PRP, micro-needling with a derma roller can be done to lighten the scars.
Acne or pimples is caused by an inflammation of the sebaceous glands of the face. While a few women report clearing of their pre-existing acne during pregnancy, others may experience a severe flare. This is due to the hormonal changes that occur during pregnancy.
How to Tackle It:
a) Always use cosmetics that are non-comedogenic.
b) Increased fluid intake and staying hydrated may help your acne naturally.
c) Remember to remove makeup before bedtime and avoid frequently touching your face.
d) Products containing benzoyl peroxide may be used to penetrate clogged pores and remove pollutants; it is also safe to use during and after breastfeeding.
e) Although products containing retinol are great for acne treatment, they are contraindicated during pregnancy and breastfeeding.
Eczema, also known as dermatitis, is a common yet non-infectious skin condition that will not transmit to the infant. It's usually the result of an underlying sensitive skin disease that's been there for a while. Hand eczema has become quite common of late due to frequent hand washing with harsh soaps and hand sanitisers.
How to Tackle It:
a) Use a mild soap with a skin-friendly pH.
b) Gently pat dry the skin after each wash and apply a moisturising cream immediately which helps to lock in the moisture content of the skin.
c) Topical steroid creams are used to treat severe eczemas, however, they should always be prescribed by a dermatologist after careful evaluation and never be taken OTC from pharmacies. They are safe during pregnancy and lactation.
d) Do not wear anything too tight or shape-fitting. Tight clothes may trap the heat and make the skin irritable. Better to pick natural fabrics, like cotton.
The most common pregnancy rash is PUPPPs, or pruritic urticarial papules and plaques of pregnancy. These itchy, red spots appear around stretch marks and can spread to the arms, legs, and buttocks. They generally appear at the end of pregnancy, when the tummy is stretched the most.
How to Tackle It:
a) Try applying something cold to your rash to receive some relief. Apply an ice pack for 15 to 20 minutes or cover the rash with a cold, damp cloth.
b) Have lukewarm water baths as very hot water dries the skin and aggravates the itching
c) Keep the skin moisturised with a good moisturiser or coconut oil.
d) Visit your dermatologist who will further guide you on use of safe treatment options during pregnancy and lactation.(Dr. Swathi Shivakumar, Consultant Dermatologist, Aster RV Hospital, JP Nagar, Bengaluru)
Read More► Skincare Tips for New Mothers and Their Babies
Ministry of Ayush has recently noticed safety concerns on use of Guduchi (Tinospora cordifolia) that were published in social media and in some scientific journals.
This advisory is being issued to confirm that Guduchi (Tinospora cordifolia) is safe to use but some similar looking plants like Tinospora crispa may be harmful. Guduchi is a popularly known herb, familiar as Giloy and is being used in therapeutics since long in AYUSH systems.
There are good number of studies published in peer reviewed indexed Journals to substantiate safety and efficacy of Guduchi (Tinospora cordifolia). Its hepato-protective properties are also well established. Guduchi is known for its immense therapeutic applications and the practices are regulated in accordance with various applicable provisions.
It is observed that different species of Tinospora are available and only Tinospora cordifolia should be used in therapeutics, whereas similar looking species like Tinospora crispa may manifest adverse effects.
Ministry of Ayush has a well-established system of Pharmacovigilance (for reporting of suspected adverse drug reactions from Ayush medication), with its network spreading across all over India. If any suspected adverse event occurs after intake of Ayush medicine it may be reported to the nearby Pharmacovigilance centre through an Ayush physician. Further it is advised to take Ayush medicine and treatment under supervision and consultation of a registered Ayush physician only. (PIB)
Guidelines issued by Ministry of Ayush-
Read More► MoU Signed Between Regional Ayurveda Research Institute and Sikkim Manipal University for Collaborative Research
New Delhi, Sep 6 (IANS) Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday said the local traditions should be used to help the vaccination drive. He was interacting with the healthcare workers and beneficiaries of the Covid vaccination programme in Himachal Pradesh via video conferencing.Addressing the gathering, Modi said that Himachal Pradesh has emerged as a champion in the fight against the largest epidemic in 100 years."Himachal has become the first state in India to have administered at least one dose of corona vaccine to each one of its entire eligible population which underlines the importance of 'Aatmvishwas' and 'Aatmnirbharta'," said Modi. While talking to Dr Rahul of Civil Hospital at Shimla, the prime Minister lauded the team effort for minimising the vaccine wastage. Talking to a vaccination beneficiary, Modi inquired about the facilities of vaccination and how they dealt with the rumours regarding vaccination. The Prime Minister spoke to ASHA worker Nirma Devi from Kullu, and enquired about her experience with the vaccination drive. The Prime Minister emphasised to use the local traditions in helping the vaccination drive in his virtual address. He praised the model of dialogue and collaboration developed by the team and asked about how the team travelled long distances to administer vaccines.The PM said that the world's biggest vaccination programme is continuing due to the efforts of people like Karmo Devi.Karmo Devi of Una has the distinction of vaccinating 22,500 people. He praised her spirit as she kept on working despite a fracture in her leg. Lauding the efforts of doctors, ASHA workers, Aanganwadi workers, medical personnel, teachers, and other staff in the vaccination drive against Covid, PM Modi said that the success of vaccination in India is the result of the spirit and hard work of its citizens. India is vaccinating at the record speed of 1.25 crore vaccines per day. This means that the number of vaccinations in India in one day is more than the population of many countries.Recalling the mantra 'Sabka Prayas' which Modi mentioned during his Independence Day speech, he said that this success is a manifestation of that. He praised the dialogue and collaboration model and expressed happiness that even in a remote district like Lahaul-Spiti, Himachal has been a leader in giving 100 per cent first dose."This is the area which used to be cut off from the rest of the country for months before the Atal Tunnel was built," said PM Modi, while admiring the state's efforts to not allow any rumour or disinformation to hamper the vaccination efforts. "Himachal is a proof of how the country's rural society is empowering the world's largest and fastest vaccination campaign," said PM Modi.Referring to recently notified Drones rules, PM Modi said that these rules will help in the spheres of many sectors like health and agriculture and will open doors for new possibilities. He inspired the farmers and gardeners of the state to make farming in Himachal complete organic within the next 25 years.--IANSavr/dpb/skp/
New Delhi, Aug 20 (IANS) Zydus Cadila's three-dose indigenous Covid-19 vaccine ZyCoV-D, the world's first DNA-based Covid vaccine that can be administered to people aged 12 and above, on Friday received emergency use authorisation (EUA) in India, an official statement said.The Central Drugs Standard Control Organisation's (CDSO) Subject Expert Committee (SEC) granted the EUA. The Science and Technology Ministry statement said: "Zydus Cadila has received approval for Emergency Use Authorisation (EUA) from the Drug Controller General of India (DCGI) for ZyCoV-D today."ZyCoV-D is a first of its kind DNA vaccine that produces the spike protein of the SARS-CoV-2 to elicit an immune response. It is an intradermal vaccine that has to be applied using a 'needle-free injector', which, the manufacturer says, will help in reducing side effects.Developed in partnership with the Department of Biotechnology, under 'Mission COVID Suraksha' and implemented by the BIRAC, ZyCoV-D has been supported under Covid-19 Research Consortia through National Biopharma Mission for Preclinical Studies, Phase 1 and Phase 2 Clinical Trials and under the Mission COVID Suraksha for Phase 3 Clinical Trial. This 3-dose vaccine, when injected, produces the spike protein of the SARS-CoV-2 virus and elicits an immune response, which plays a vital role in protection from disease as well as viral clearance. The plug-and-play technology on which the plasmid DNA platform is based can be easily adapted to deal with mutations in the virus, such as those already occurring.The interim results from Phase 3 Clinical Trials, involving over 28,000 volunteers, showed primary efficacy of 66.6 per cent for symptomatic RT-PCR positive cases. This has been the largest trial so far in India for Covid-19 vaccines.The vaccine had already exhibited robust immunogenicity and tolerability and safety profile in the adaptive Phase 1/2 clinical trials carried out earlier. The Phase 1/2 and Phase 3 clinical trials have been monitored by an independent Data Safety Monitoring Board (DSMB).--IANSavr/vd
Mexico City, Aug 19 (IANS) Mexico has authorised the emergency use of the US-manufactured Moderna vaccine against Covid-19, the country's Undersecretary of Prevention and Health Promotion Hugo Lopez-Gatell said.The Mexican official confirmed on his Twitter account on Wednesday that the Federal Commission for the Protection against Health Risks "issued the authorisation for emergency use of the Moderna vaccine", reports Xinhua news agency."We have eight approved vaccines with this one, all safe, quality and effective," Lopez-Gatell said.Earlier, the Ministry of Health stated that as of Tuesday, 78,765,073 vaccine doses had been administered in the country.Mexico aims to immunise its residents through a national plan with an investment of about $1.6 billion.--IANSksk/
New York, Aug 18 (IANS) While diabetes, obesity and a history of smoking cigarettes are considered as risk factors for poorer Covid-19 outcomes, a new study claims that people with cannabis use disorder (CUD) may also be at increased risk.The research from the Washington University in St Louis used genetic epidemiological models to determine that genetic predisposition to CUD is related to risk for a severe reaction to Covid-19.Having genetic variants does not mean a person has CUD or that the person has used cannabis.But, comparing people with the variants to their Covid outcomes, the researchers found genetic liability for CUD accounted for up to 40 per cent of genetically influenced risk factors, such as body mass index (BMI) and diabetes, for a severe Covid-19 presentation.This association suggested that heavy and problematic cannabis use may represent a modifiable pathway to minimise severe Covid-19 presentations, the researchers explained, in the journal Biological Psychiatry: Global Open Access.The study point to two possible outcomes: That a predisposition to CUD and severe Covid-19 are due to a common biological mechanism, like inflammatory conditions causing individuals to develop worse symptoms of Covid-19 and/or dependence on cannabis; or that they are associated because of a causal process, said Alexander S. Hatoum, a postdoctoral researcher at the varsity."If we know the genes that predispose individuals to cannabis use disorder, and if cannabis use disorder is a risk factor for Covid-19 hospitalisation, you will see the genes influencing cannabis use disorder as predictors of severe Covid-19 cases," he said."We found that a person's genetic risk for cannabis use disorder is correlated with their risk for Covid-19, without having to ask directly about illegal substance use," he added.For the study, the team combined existing datasets to test whether being at higher genetic risk for cannabis use disorder was correlated to the risk of Covid hospitalisation.One set of data involved 357,806 people, including 14,080 with CUD; the other involved 1,206,629 people, including 9,373 who were hospitalised with Covid. They also looked at 7 million genetic variants to assess the association between CUD and severe Covid.--IANSrvt/vd
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