Some people think that if they only lived in a cave like Gollum their skin would never age. The Ponce de Leon theory, without the fountain.
While it would be true that some of your skin’s aging would not occur with that lifestyle, even Gollum would age. This is because there are two types of aging, intrinsic and extrinsic. One you can do something about, the other just happens. Of course, when you want to try and turn the clock back on either type of skin aging, Dr. Smith is your best option!
When you’re in your teens and early 20s the outer layer of your skin (the epidermis) is smooth and even. Pigmentation is uniform. Collage production is still near peak. This is important because collagen provides the skin’s support structure. Having a healthy supply keeps your skin firm and taut. Also, your elastin is still plentiful, keeping the skin supple and malleable. Glycosaminoglycans (GAGs), which keeps the skin hydrated, is abundant.
Intrinsic vs. extrinsic aging
But time stops for no one, not even that Nazi sympathizer dude in Indiana Jones who tried to find the Holy Grail! Your skin ages and wrinkles start to form. Wrinkling is a combination of two types of aging — intrinsic and extrinsic.
Intrinsic aging is the master of all. Even if you lived Gollum’s spelunking lifestyle, you’d still age intrinsically. Once you turn 20, your body cuts back on its production of collagen by one percent each year. This makes your skin thinner and more fragile as the years go by. Your sweat and oil glands also slow their function, and elastin and GAGs drop as well. While intrinsic aging is inevitable, it isn’t the main cause of wrinkles.
That culprit would be extrinsic aging. Extrinsic aging is basically up to you. It is a direct result of sun and environmental damage (smoking or exposure to pollution, among others). In extrinsic aging, the cornified outer layer of the skin thickens even as the skin overall becomes thinner, looser, and more brittle. Precancerous growths, skin cancers, and sun spots all start to develop, in direct response to your amount of sun exposure. This exposure also causes an exaggerated decrease in collagen, elastin, and GAGs.
All of these factors team up to give your skin a saggy, wrinkled, rough appearance, with uneven tone and brown patches.
See? Now you don’t need to beat yourself up about your wrinkles. Probably only less than half of them could have been prevented! And that sagging skin was basically inevitable.
But that’s where Dr. Smith can help. His various surgical procedures can help address the aging of your skin. Call us at 843-705-8940 and set up a consultation to see what we can do to turn back the clock.