Are Wrinkles Reversible?Medical Aesthetics
One day, you look in the mirror and realize something is different. Those subtle character lines around your eyes aren’t so subtle anymore, and you look much older than the youthful spirit you feel like. It could be time to do something about those wrinkles, but what?
With all the products advertised, wrinkle repair seems common but confusing at the same time. Getting a handle on your wrinkle situation starts with learning more about wrinkles. Knowing how they form will help you figure out how to prevent them in the first place.
Can wrinkled skin be reversed? In a short answer, yes. But it probably won’t be a complete elimination. Here are some ways you can reverse aging naturally as well as treatments you can try if other methods aren’t working.
Why Wrinkles Form
Wrinkles are a fact of life, but you may have noticed that everyone is not endowed equally. That’s because many different conditions contribute to the formation of wrinkles. Some of them you can control, and some you cannot. Here are five leading causes of wrinkles:
- Sugar Consumption
It is a recently documented fact that sugar triggers the production of advanced glycation end product (AGE) in your bloodstream. AGE damages certain proteins in your body, including two that your skin needs to remain plump and firm. The sugar you eat is killing the collagen and elastin in your skin, promoting wrinkles and an aged appearance.
- Sun Exposure
While you’re soaking in all that natural vitamin D, you’re also advancing the aging process of your skin. The ultra-violet rays (UV) cause the production of free radicals that attack your skin at the cellular level. Prolonged and unprotected sun exposure causes wrinkles and uneven pigmentation that makes your skin look old.
Yes, you might be able to blame your parents for premature aging of your skin. Although there are several other factors that can come into play, the timing of wrinkle development is partially hereditary, as is the overall condition of your skin. While you can’t change your genetics, they can help you predict when wrinkles will appear, and you can take action to counteract the effect of your genetics on the condition of your skin.
Smoking is an unhealthy habit for many reasons, but it is also a prime wrinkle contributor. Exposure to smoke may dehydrate your skin, but the nicotine consumption does the real damage. With consistent nicotine use, the blood vessels in the outer layer of your skin tend to narrow. Over time, the slowing of oxygen and nutrients to the surface of your skin results in wrinkles.
Water is an essential element in your body that needs to be replenished daily. When your water consumption is consistently low, cell damage occurs in your skin. Think of a grape becoming a raisin — the lack of moisture shrinks the inside and wrinkles the skin. Dehydration has the same effect on your skin.
Types of Wrinkles
Most people would say there are just two types of wrinkles: the ones you have and the ones you are going to have. Dermatologists, however, divide wrinkles into four categories based on their location and depth:
- Atrophic Crinkling Rhytids
These are small wrinkles that look like tiny parallel lines. They appear on your face and other areas of your body as a result of certain static positions. Younger, healthier skin bounces back from these positional wrinkles, but as your skin ages, it loses that ability. That means the wrinkles remain visible even after you change positions and stretch the skin in a different direction. If you pull on your skin with your hands, you can stretch out the wrinkles, but they reappear when you let go.
Many women develop these type of wrinkles on their chest from a consistent sleeping position. The weight of their breasts wrinkles the skin above the cleavage, and in time, the wrinkles remain visible even when they are sitting up.
- Permanent Elastic Creases
Permanent elastic creases are caused by a lack of collagen. They are horizontal wrinkles that tend to appear at the base of your neck. They can also be seen in your cheeks and on your upper lip.
Repeated actions that fold your skin, like looking down and wrinkling the skin across the base of your throat, can eventually create permanent elastic creases. Sun exposure is known to accelerate the formation of this type of wrinkle, as is smoking.
- Dynamic Expression Lines
When you move your facial muscles to create a smile, frown or another expression, your skin wrinkles. As the condition of your skin diminishes, usually in later life because of a depletion of collagen and elastin, those wrinkles become permanently visible on your face, even when you’re not smiling.
This is why you may have a distinct but shallow vertical wrinkle between your eyebrows, or wide lines branching out from the corners of your eyes. This type of wrinkle is almost always asymmetrical, since facial expressions are seldom balanced on both sides of the face.
- Gravitational Folds
In time, all skin can succumb to the pull of gravity. Without the support of the youthful amounts of collagen, skin can begin to fold down over itself. Gravitational folds are usually most noticeable in the upper eyelids as they begin to encroach on the eyes. They are also the deep folds that run from the outer edge of each nostril toward the corners of the mouth. Additionally, these types of wrinkles account for the lines on the chin that mimic the mouth of a talking puppet. When the skin around the jaw starts to sag, gravity helps create these deep folds and a jowly appearance.
The underlying cause of most skin aging and wrinkles is a lack of collagen and elastin. Due to age, health and environmental conditions, skin loses its ability to stretch and bounce back. The texture of the skin changes with cell damage and a lack of moisture, so when it folds, it creases. When there is nothing to plump out those creases, they become wrinkles and remain visible.
How to Avoid Wrinkles Naturally
There is no rule of nature that says you have to develop wrinkles at a certain age. Some people manage to maintain healthy skin naturally well into the retirement years. For others, wrinkles become a regular battle much earlier in life, long before they would consider themselves old.
You can’t avoid the passage of time, but there are some things you can do to control the effects it has on you. The best way to avoid wrinkles as you age is to maintain healthy skin. Here are some tips for skin health at any age that can help you avoid the appearance of wrinkles:
- Reduce Stress
Stress is a natural response to a crisis, but prolonged periods of stress can have an adverse effect on health, including skin health. Stress damages cells, and skin cells are the most visible. Less stress in your life can mean healthier skin cells and fewer wrinkles.
- Quit Smoking
The nicotine in cigarettes is directly linked with skin damage and wrinkles. Every time you smoke, you increase the damage. Of course, the healthiest scenario for your skin would be to never smoke, but if you already developed the habit, you can improve your skin’s health by quitting. The sooner you quit, the sooner your body can begin to recover from the damage.
Water consumption helps circulate nutrients and remove toxins from your system. In addition to drinking plenty of water, you should also use a moisturizer to protect your skin from the outside and help it hold in moisture. Healthy, well-hydrated skin is less likely to wrinkle.
- Limit Sun Exposure
The effects of the sun can be cumulative over a lifetime, so you don’t want to overdo it, even when you’re young. Avoid overexposure and sunburn, and always protect your face with a good sunscreen. Remember that even on a cold, cloudy day, the skin on your face is exposed to UV rays from the sun.
These healthy skin tips can help you slow wrinkle development or help reduce the appearance of wrinkles if you already have them. It’s never too late to start protecting your skin, but remember: even the healthiest skin is going to show signs of aging eventually.
How to Reverse the Signs of Aging on Your Face
One of the first visible signs of aging is wrinkles. They may be small and almost undetectable at first, but wrinkles tend to advance until you can’t ignore them. By treating those wrinkles, though, you could reverse the signs of aging.
The treatments for wrinkles depend on the type of wrinkles you’re dealing with. Here are the most effective ways to reverse each type of wrinkle:
- Reversing Atrophic Crinkle Rhytids
These can be tough to reverse, so you want to be sure you prevent them from getting any worse. Protect your skin with sunscreen from now on. You may even want to talk to the doctor about the best products on the market for your type of skin.
Another way to prevent these wrinkles from showing up is to use a moisturizer on your face and body. The best time to apply products to your skin is just after washing, when your skin is most absorbent.
Removing the dead skin cells from the surface of your face will reveal healthier new ones and diminish the appearance of these wrinkles. Add an exfoliating cream to your daily routine to reverse atrophic wrinkles.
- Reducing Permanent Elastic Creases
These lines are too deep for any surface treatments to reach, so one of the most effective treatments for these deep lines is micro-needling. The procedure reaches below the surface of the skin and encourages increased collagen production that could plump out the wrinkles and make them less noticeable.
- Lessening the Effects of Dynamic Expression Lines
If these lines are not too pronounced, they could be improved with a topical cream that contains Retinol-A. This solution will take time to work, though.
A quicker solution for this type of wrinkle is an injectable filler. There are various products available for this application, but they all accomplish the same goal: they plump out those wrinkles by filling in the space underneath the skin. Your practitioner can explain the benefits of each product. They vary mostly on the length of effectiveness and the type of the ingredients.
- Gravitational Folds
Reversing this type of wrinkle can be an inside job. Consuming plenty of healthy fats as part of a balanced diet will improve the texture of your skin. There are also surgical interventions that reverse gravitational folds rather well. A plastic surgeon could explain your options based on your unique situation.
Wrinkles may be a problem for you, but there are ways to minimize them. With the proper treatment and some patience, wrinkles can be reversed and the youthful appearance of healthy skin restored.
How to Reverse Wrinkles From Smoking
Even if you have been a smoker for a long time, it’s possible to reduce the negative effects that smoking has had on your skin on your skin. One of the first things you can do to start is to quit smoking. This could be tough, but it’s an important step to help stop the formation of new wrinkles and to start reversing ones you already have.
Next, add in these components to improve your skin health and reduce the appearance of wrinkles due to smoking:
Your skin is probably dehydrated from smoking, especially if you drink alcohol as well. Both nicotine and alcohol tend to dehydrate the body and leave skin dry. Dry skin, of course, wrinkles more easily than skin that is well hydrated. Use a rich moisturizer on your face and body every day to hold in moisture. Increase your water consumption, too.
- Avoid Smoke
It’s not just the smoke from your cigarettes that damages your skin. Inhaling second-hand smoke also puts nicotine into your system. Even after you quit smoking, avoid going to places where other people are smoking. You can’t avoid inhaling cell-damaging nicotine in a smoky room. Also, avoid being in a car or other confined space with someone who is smoking.
Getting rid of those dead skin cells on the surface will improve the appearance of your skin. Your skin can absorb toxins from the dirt and smoke that settles on it throughout the day. Washing that surface layer away will limit your exposure. Exfoliating can also stimulate deeper layers of your skin to produce more collagen.
Give your skin the nutrients it needs from the inside. In other words, make sure you have a nutritious and balanced diet. Consume more foods with vitamin C that will help build collagen. On the outside, use a nutrient-rich face mask when your pores are clean and open. Increasing your skin’s daily nutrients both inside and out can counteract some of the effects of smoking and help restore a more youthful look.
After you have brought your skin back to better health by counteracting some of the effects of smoking, you can consult a practitioner about more aggressive treatments to reverse wrinkles. Prescription creams and laser treatments could help you obtain the results you’re looking for.
Botox and Fillers for Wrinkle Reversal
Botox and other injectable solutions for wrinkles are popular, and give many people the results they’re looking for when treating wrinkles.
Here’s a quick look at Botox and fillers:
Botox is used primarily in the upper half of the face, and it can reduce the appearance of wrinkles. It’s injected into the tiny muscles underneath your wrinkles, temporarily paralyzing the muscles. The Botox blocks signals to the muscles that would make them move — and when the muscles don’t move, the skin over the top of them doesn’t crease.
Botox is a good solution for small wrinkles. It can also be used in the delicate skin around the eyes or on the forehead. Botox is safe to use anywhere on the face, but it’s most effective for the shallow wrinkles you see in the upper half of your face.
The effects of Botox last for several weeks, and then it can be re-injected. Botox is safe to use in children as well, so with small injections, frequent repeats are not a problem. Since it’s usually only injected into the tiny muscles around your upper face, it won’t interfere with smiling, talking or other regular movements.
These are substances that are injected below the surface of the skin to plump out the wrinkles. Just like the name says, they fill in low pockets of tissue to make the skin look fuller and stretch out the wrinkles. Fillers are used in tiny amounts with several small injections to plump the skin without changing the overall profile contour.
Fillers are good for bigger wrinkles, but they don’t go too deep below the surface. They can be used in the delicate under-eye area or around the lips, and fillers can also be used in conjunction with Botox for a more comprehensive solution.
The effects of fillers tend to last longer than Botox, but they aren’t permanent. Any type of filler will eventually be absorbed into the body, circulated away from the skin and disposed of like a toxin or excess fat. However, when using fillers, you can go several months between treatments.
Botox and fillers are some of the most common procedures used to reverse wrinkles. The treatments are done by a professional, but they are short and don’t require expensive equipment or extensive preparation — you can go to the spa for one of these treatments and be headed back to work after the procedure.
How to Begin Reversing Wrinkles
There are a lot of wrinkle treatments available over the counter that may reverse your wrinkles, and some are quite expensive. Paying for a solution is not a problem, as long as you know it’s going to work — but determining that can be difficult without the help of a professional. With professional guidance, you can choose the treatment that is right for you and know the results you can expect before you start.
When you consult a professional for help with your wrinkles, you also have more treatments available to you. Some of the more potent topicals are restricted to prescription only, and injectable treatments are not packaged for home use. Additionally, some of the better moisturizers and sunscreens are distributed exclusively by dermatologists and other skin care professionals.
If you want to learn more about reversing wrinkles, contact Synergy Wellness Center to see how our medical aesthetics procedures can help reduce the appearance of wrinkles, allowing you to maintain a youthful look.