Your face, particularly your skin, gives people an idea of your age. As you age, your skin naturally gets thinner, drier and less elastic. Though wrinkles are a normal part of aging, individuals who have damaged their skin by spending a lot of time in the sun, at tanning salons, or smoking cigarettes will be more likely to have wrinkles than a person who has not.
Three layers make up the skin: the epidermis, dermis and the subcutaneous. All three work together to support and protect the skin. When skin is young, it easily stretches and holds in moisture. This moisture “plumps” the skin, giving it a smooth and youthful appearance. The elastic quality of the dermis is due to elastin. Elastin fibers allow the skin to keep its youthful appearance, allowing it to “bounce back” to its original position when pulled or pinched.
Collagen is a protein in the dermis that plumps the skin and prevents wrinkles. Over time, this middle layer of skin (the dermis) loses both elastin and collagen. This causes the skin to thin and as a result, less moisture gets to the layer of skin that lies on top (the epidermis). Also, fat in the deepest layer of skin (the subcutaneous layer) that gives skin a plump appearance begins to disappear. This causes the epidermis to sag and wrinkles to form.
Wrinkles can be categorized as either fine surface lines or deep furrows. Fine lines are small lines found on the surface of the skin. These are much easier to treat than deep furrows; the deeper, more pronounced lines that are much more visible to the eye. The use of prescription creams, chemical peels, laser therapies and dermal fillers like Botox® can help with these problems. Dermal fillers and Botox treatments are quick with virtually no downturn.
Easily injectable, a short visit to James H. Carraway, MD, FACS can reduce the look of wrinkles for several months. The number of treatments required will vary depending on the severity of wrinkles. Laser resurfacing may require several treatments and remove a small portion of the outer layer of the skin during each procedure. Deeper furrows and creases, on the other hand, may require a more aggressive approach. James H. Carraway, MD, FACS can advise you of your options in treatments.
Although there are various options for resolving wrinkles, it's always wiser to prevent them if possible. Working with James H. Carraway, MD, FACS to maintain your skin by scheduling regular skin screenings will help you keep your skin as youthful as possible and prevent other more serious skin conditions. Please call (757) 557-0300 to schedule an appointment.
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