You are probably aware of the fact that your body is going to change a lot during the nine months of pregnancy. Be prepared to see and feel the growth and development of your unborn baby. Of course, not all the pregnancy changes and experiences are going to be pleasant. Apart from the common pregnancy-related problems like morning sickness, constipation, headaches and swollen feet, you may also suffer from certain skin problems during pregnancy. Many pregnant women notice the appearance of a vertical, dark line on their bellies, which runs between the pubic area and the bellybutton or the lower chest. This dark pregnancy line on the stomach is known as Linea Nigra.
What should I do about the pregnancy line on my stomach?
There is nothing you can do to prevent the dark line from appearing, since it is a normal part of pregnancy. However, you could keep the line from getting darker, by staying out of the sun or by making sure that you do not expose your belly to the sun.
The dark pregnancy line on the stomach usually shows up around the middle or the end of the second trimester, which means the fifth or the sixth month of pregnancy. Unfortunately, you cannot make the line disappear while you are pregnant either. You just need to wait for it to go away on its own. The dark line will gradually fade after you give birth, but in all probability, it will not disappear completely.
Reasons for dark line on stomach during pregnancy
A surge in the pregnancy hormone estrogen, which is responsible for most of the changes that your body goes through, is the main cause of Linea Nigra.
This may come as a surprise to you, but you may have had a skin-colored line on your stomach, since before you got pregnant. You probably never noticed the Linea Alba or the white line, because it blended in with your skin completely. However, during pregnancy, your body produces a higher amount of a pigment known as melanin. This pigment is responsible for giving your skin and hair their color. An increase in the production of melanin causes the Linea Alba to turn into a dark pregnancy line.
Though there is no clinical evidence to support this, it has been observed that women with dark skin are more likely to get Linea Nigra, than women with light skin.
Some health experts claim that the deficiency of folic acid during pregnancy could worsen Linea Nigra, though there are no scientific studies to support this theory. Nevertheless, do ensure that you follow a healthy pregnancy diet, which consists of leafy greens, oranges, cereals and whole grain bread. This diet may not reduce your dark pregnancy line, but it will definitely be good for your baby’s growth and development.
Once again, Linea Nigra is quite normal and therefore, you need not get too worried about it. However, if there is anything that you are particularly concerned about, do speak to your doctor about it.
Submitted by N on May 2, 2012 at 12:20