Pregnancy rash is a one the result of various skin changes that occur in some pregnant women due to surging levels of pregnancy hormones. A number of these skin changes in pregnant women are considered normal pregnancy side effects on your skin and therefore not regarded as skin disorders.
A lot of skin changes that normally occur during pregnancy range from simple pigmentation to stretch marks or even rashes. The good news is that most of these skin changes gradually disappear after childbirth.
Few common ones include darkening of nipples and the external genital (pubic area) due to excessive pigmentation, pregnancy acne, enhanced visibility of superficial skin veins due to over-stretching of skin and darkening of the color of moles.
Linea nigra, a dark line that emerges on the abdomen and runs straight down to belly button appear by the 6th or 7th month into pregnancy, is another popular pregnancy skin change.
Abnormal skin changes refer to the presence of some skin characteristics or features that are not present in most expecting moms. These abnormal skin changes also include rash – which likely appear at any time during pregnancy.
Pregnancy rash doesn’t occur in all pregnant women though largely caused by changes in hormone levels, such as increase in the levels of estrogen and melanocyte-stimulating hormone (MSH).
The cells responsible for skin pigmentation are called melanocytes and the greater the concentration of melanocytes, the greater the skin pigmentation that will likely occur.
Darkening of the skin, hyper pigmentation occurs, by the increase in the levels of melanocyte-stimulating hormone, which increases as estrogen level increases during pregnancy. Most changes found in the veins are due to the increase in estrogen level.
Stretch marks however appear when the abdomen and breasts enlarge and the elastic tissues in those parts are increasingly over-stretched.
Although most of the skin changes are not harmful to both the pregnant mom and her developing baby, it's advised you seek advice on any rash or unusual skin condition as soon as you notice it.
· Pregnancy rash and liver cells:
During pregnancy, liver cells may undergo active inflammatory changes or adaptive changes due to changing hormonal levels during pregnancy. Any rash that is associated with abdominal pain or indigestion complaint should be reported to your doctor.
· PUPPP - ( pruritic urticarial papules and plaques of pregnancy )
This is one of the most popular skin changes during pregnancy which is common during first pregnancy and in multiple pregnancy.
The symptoms and sign of PUPPP are strange skin bumps or reddish spots that may cause severe itchiness. This type of pregnancy rash usually begins from the abdomen, especially in abdominal stretch marks and then extends to the thighs.
Sometimes arms and buttocks are also affected. Moreover, this rash may appear after 34 weeks of pregnancy and vanishes once the baby is born even without any treatment. Usually, it doesn’t re-occur in subsequent pregnancies.
· Skin Exacerbation into rash:
In cases of having rashes or any skin disease before getting pregnant and such pre-pregnancy condition become aggravated by your sensitive pregnant skin. This may be the rash of lupus or rash due to any other skin disorder like psoriasis or eczema. Consult your doctor for suitable treatment.
· Itching without rash during pregnancy:
It’s common in early months of pregnancy to have feeling of itchiness without any visible rash and some women experience severe itchiness during their late months in pregnancies. If this itchiness continues or gets worse, then you should consult your doctor for necessary treatment.
The causes of non-specific rashes include medicines, insect bites, allergies, viral infections, skin infections, tumors, parasites and a variant collection of diseases that affect the entire body which is known to be collective tissue disorders.
· Papular dermatitis of pregnancy:
Aberrant levels of a pregnancy hormone are associated with this disorder of skin especially increased chronic levels of gonadotrophins and altered levels of both estrogen and cortisol.
Symptoms and sign are marked by red, raised and very itchy bumps which often appear like insect bites. These bumps are found all over the body and can burst anytime with possible re-appearance of its spots at intervals until childbirth.
Majority of these skin changes vanish within months of delivery but have the tendency to reappear in subsequent pregnancies. Similarly stretch marks don’t vanish instantly and completely but they faint with time.
Apart from affecting the appearance of the expecting mom, rash on the face in the form of malasma or pregnancy marks don’t harm the maternal or fetal health in any way whatsoever.
In the event you encounter any of the skin changes or pregnancy rash, don’t panic! Rather seek the help of your doctor to nip it in the bud.