FALL ISSUE 2005, VOLUME 19, NUMBER 4

Aging is inevitable but you can do it with style and grace

IN THIS ISSUE

Aging is inevitable but you can do it with style and grace

The forgotten brow and how to maximize this facial feature to

Ask the Surgeon / Health Tip / What’s New

Trends in 2004 show facial plastic surgery on the rise

Age gracefully by knowing what changes to expect and how you can look your best at any age. From young adult to senior, your skin goes through changes. When we are young, the skin inherently and efficiently repairs injuries and damage from the sun or pollution. As we get older, the repair mechanism is less adept, and the damage emerges as wrinkles, age spots, or uneven texture.

Twenties
The skin is clear, taut, and pores remain small. The key is to ward off premature signs of aging by protecting your skin from the harmful rays of the sun. Eight-five percent of what we think of as aging is actually caused by exposure to the sun. Cleanse, moisturize, and apply sunscreen (with at least a sun protection factor of 15) daily.

Thirties
During your 30s, small changes begin to take place. Cell replacement is not as quick as it once was and the skin begins to appear drier and thinner. Keep your skin well hydrated, especially in a dry climate or during the winter months, by drinking plenty of water and applying a moisturizer twice a day.

The protein that holds the skin together, collagen, begins to break down and wrinkles may start to show around the mouth and eyes. Your facial plastic surgeon may propose an alpha-hydroxy cleanser, BOTOX® Cosmetic injections, or filler injections.

Forties
The skin’s natural process of exfoliation, cell renewal, and collagen production continues to slow. The skin begins to sag and wrinkles are more noticeable. The tone and texture of your skin is changinga little more dull and enlarged pores. Signs of photodamage are more visible with freckles, age spots, and changes in skin color.

Along with the 30s recommendations, your physician may prescribe an exfoliator to help get rid of dead skin cells, suggest a chemical peel to smooth the face, or endorse blepharoplasty (eyelid surgery) to remove sagging skin around the eyes.

Fifties
The aging process is in full swing. Along with increasing wrinkles and the toll of gravity, fat cells begin to collect around the neck and chin. The loss of volume and fullness in the cheeks gives way to increased loose skin and sagging. Decreased production of estrogen affects your skin, increasing dryness and reducing elasticity.

Good skin care maintenance is important. Regular facials can help the skin’s circulation. There are many minimally invasive procedures to rejuvenate your appearance, such as dermal fillers to add fullness, or you may be a good candidate for a facelift.

Sixties Plus
Your skin tone continues to become lax, with increased jowls and excess folds of skin. The skin is lighter in color due to decreased circulation. Moisturization is critical. You should see your facial plastic surgeon to screen for skin cancer. If you would like to look as young as you feel, your physician may recommend midfacial implants, facelift, laser resurfacing, or microdermabrasion.

Although you cannot stop the aging process, you can be proactive in prevention and maintenance. Make an appointment with your facial plastic surgeon to discuss your options for a younger, rejuvenated you.