Saturday, June 21, 2008

Wrinkle Free Skin

Although wrinkles can be signs of experience and wisdom, naturally it could be a matter of bother to many. Skin ages all over the body; but more so where there has been exposure to the sun - which is a lot in tropical weather, especially in Chennai. Exposure to sunlight causes dryness, roughness, sagging and finally wrinkles.

Wrinkles can be divided into two categories.
* Fine surface lines which appear first and
* Deep furrows that appear as age advances.

Wrinkles do not just appear on the face, but also on the face, neck, the back of the hands and top of forearms.

Factors that promote wrinkle formation:
SMOKING, pursing of lips leads to formation of fine lines
* Skin type - people with light coloured skin are more susceptible to sun damage and hence more wrinkles.

* Heredity (some families wrinkle more; so if your grandmother at 60-70 still has smooth skin, chances are that you will have less wrinkles).

* Dress - long or short as it determines how much skin is exposed to the sun.

* Occupation - people who are mostly outdoors, have more exposure to the sun over the course of many years tend to have more wrinkles.

Preventive measures
* THE most important preventive measure is to use a sunscreen lotion when you are outdoors. For India, use of sunscreen with SPF 30 or above; apply the sunscreen at least half-an-hour before you go out; repeat every three hours.

* Limit alcohol intake - large amounts of alcohol consumption leads to blotches and puffiness and when this goes down, wrinkles set in.

* Drink at least eight glasses of water to hydrate your skin.

* Do not go on crash diets. Yo-yo gain and loss can make your skin sag by wearing out the supporting fibres.

* Exercise in fresh air or walk daily for at least 15 - 30 minutes in the open. This stimulates the circulation and oxygen supply to the skin and helps to delay onset of wrinkles.

* Take time out to relax facial muscles. This can be done both by meditation or a facial every month after you are 30 years old.

* Don't sleep with your face scrouched into your pillow.

* Place a thin strip of cloth soaked in groundnut oil over your forehead. Leave it on for 10 minutes. Do this three times a week.

* Always wear sun glasses with UV protection. This prevents crows feet.

* Use reading glasses as soon as you need them; otherwise you will be puckering your eyes.

* Do not keep rubbing your eyes all the time. This can stretch the delicate skin.

* Stop smoking as pursing your lips around a cigarette can etch up lines.

* Keep your hands off your face. Sitting with your chin in your hands pushes your skin out of its natural position and stretches it.

Treatments available for wrinkles:
Cosmetic treatment

A NUMBER of anti-wrinkle creams are available in the market. Choose creams that contain liposomes, antioxidants like Vit. E, Panthenol and Provitamin B5. These creams make wrinkles look less prominent. Choose a cream to suit your skin type and a reputed parlour for a facial once a month.
Consult an experienced beautician for a facial which prevents pimples.

Medical procedures:
TODAY THE two most popular medical procedures are:
* Laser removal of wrinkles. This treatment is almost painless and there is little or no redness. You may require a few sittings over a period of months.

* Botox - is getting popular in India. A lot of film stars and models use it to keep their appearance intact. Botox is brand name for Botulinum Toxin Type A. Botulinum toxin is used to eliminate frown lines, horizontal forehead lines, crows feet and worry lines. Botox blocks impulses from the nerve to the tiny facial muscles to stop them contracting, leaving the overlying skin smooth and wrinkle-free. The pain associated with the injection is minimal. Treatment takes 15 minutes depending on the areas you wish to get treated. It takes seven days to see the full effect and lasts for 3-5 months. You will need to repeat the injections 2-3 times a year. Nowadays people have `botox kitty parties' where these injections are given to both men and women. For safety, choose an experienced doctor.
Diet for avoiding the onset of wrinkles:

* GET FISH to your table at least twice a week. Oily fish like Mackerel, Salmon, Sardines are the richest source of active Omega-3 fatty acids which strengthen collagen and elastic fibres and thus prevent wrinkles, sagging and dryness. If you are a vegetarian, Omega-3 fatty acid is available in capsule form at the pharmacies.

* Eat berries like our grandmothers did - purple, dark red, blue berries eg. jamun, phalsa and dark cherries. These have anti-aging properties because they get their colour from the wrinkle-buster antioxidant flavinoid Anthocyanin. Cauliflower and broccoli also have cell-protecting anti-oxidants, beta-carotene as well as Vitamin A and C.

Tips to hide your wrinkles:
USE LIQUID make-up to camouflage lines, blend well so that it does not set into crevices.
* Blush-on used on cheek bones can take away attention from the wrinkles.

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