Quick Facts – Wrinkles
One fact we must face in life is we will eventually get wrinkles. Skin wrinkles appear as we age, but are also produced from sleeping habits, smoking, sun damage, poor hydration, and repeated facial expressions. Wrinkles can be divided into two categories: fine lines and deep furrows. Fine line wrinkles can often be treated with creams and procedures in a dermatologist office, while deep furrows may require surgery if there is a desire to be rid of them.
What causes wrinkles?
Age effects wrinkles because as one ages, the skin gets thinner. The skin will then lose its stretchiness, as well as the structure. The skin is able to produce less oil, and will not hold as much moisture. The healing process of the skin is much slower as well. All of these factors will contribute to the aging process.
Many do not realise that sleeping positions can help aid in wrinkles. For those that sleep on their backs, this is not an issue. However, when one sleeps on their side or on the stomach, the face is smashed against the pillow, creating temporary wrinkles. Over time, these wrinkles will lose their ability to bounce back, and will be etched into the face.
Smoking will aid in wrinkle production by shutting down collagen production. Collagen helps the skin’s structure, and gives the skin firmness for young looking skin. As less collagen is produced, the skin will wrinkle more quickly, as collagen helps to plump up the skin.
The sun can cause damage to the skin if it is exposed to too much of it. It is best to limit the amount of sun daily, as well as protect the skin with sunscreen and protective clothing.
Repeated facial expressions can cause wrinkles to form on the skin. Smiling, frowning, squinting and other repeated facial motions can lead to wrinkles setting in the face due to the repeated motion the muscles must make.
What is the best wrinkle treatment?
There are many treatments both over the counter and from a dermatologist one can use if wrinkles have formed on the skin. These include:
- Vitamin A Acid: This is available by a prescription. It is very successful in treating fine lines and wrinkles, however, they must be used on an ongoing basis. They can produce redness to the skin until the skin has adjusted to it.
- Antioxidants: Antioxidants are often found in creams over the counter. Vitamins A, C and E as well as beta-carotene will help aid in the treatment of mild wrinkles.
- Alph-hydroxy acids- These are often referred to as fruit acids. They are good for the skin, but might not produce the desired effect. They include glycolic acid and lactic acid.
- Microdermabrasion- A machine is used in a dermatologist office to sand the skin. It will usually take 6 or more treatments to produce the desired effect. The face will often feel smoother after a session. There are home kits available that will also smooth the skin, but will not give the full effect as what an in office treatment can do.
- Dermabrasion- This medical procedure is usually performed using general anesthesia. The skin will be sanded down with an instrument that rotates. One can see excellent results with dermabrasion.
- Fractional resurfacing- A laser will be passed over the skin several times to reach down to the skin’s second layer, which will help to stimulate the body’s natural collagen production. Several treatments are usually needed on the skin but there is less downtime since the entire face will not be done, only the areas that need treatment.
How to help prevent wrinkles?
To prevent wrinkles from forming, always wear a sunscreen of at least SPF 30. Apply it 20 minutes before sun exposure. Reapply every 2 hours. Avoid the sun in peak hours, from 10 am to 4 pm. Wear wide brimmed hats and protective clothing when outdoors. If you smoke, stop. Sleep on your back and aim to get 6 to 8 cups of water in your diet daily, as water will help the skin keep it’s moisture and elasticity.