Post-Pregnancy Body Changes

Skin Discoloration

When: Up to or longer than a year after delivery

Why: During pregnancy, most women will experience hyper-pigmentation, such as a linea nigra (the line that runs down your belly) or melasma (darker pigmentation on your face) in some form, both of which are caused by an increase in estrogen, experts believe. After delivery, these lines will fade, Dr. Harms says, but they do so slowly and may never disappear entirely. Your best bet: prevention. "These lines can be reawakened with sun exposure, so I recommend an SPF of 30 or higher," Dr. Harms says.

Copyright © 2008. Used with permission from the March 2008 issue of American Baby magazine.

All content on this Web site, including medical opinion and any other health-related information, is for informational purposes only and should not be considered to be a specific diagnosis or treatment plan for any individual situation. Use of this site and the information contained herein does not create a doctor-patient relationship. Always seek the direct advice of your own doctor in connection with any questions or issues you may have regarding your own health or the health of others.

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