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With Appropriate Care Your Skin Can Make You Feel and Look Younger PDF Print E-mail
Written by Dr. David Lipschitz, Creative Syndicate   
Thursday, 17 July 2014 02:39

As the days become progressively hotter, it's time to focus on keeping your skin looking younger than its chronological age. My mother, at age 90, had a face with deep wrinkles, which to me were a measure of her wisdom, grace and years of experience. Even in bed with a serious illness and weeks before her death, she complained about wrinkles and asked if she would benefit from a facelift. "Oh, to be young again," she said. It is so sad that we measure our age by the nature of our skin and believe that reducing wrinkles keeps us young. It turns out that you can reduce skin wrinkling, but, unfortunately, your skin continues to age.

My mother's wrinkles are a combination of age, lifelong sun exposure, cigarette smoking and not using the correct approach to skin care. These days we are more concerned about skin protection. I am always impressed by my wife's beautiful, wrinkle-free skin. She is compulsive about sunscreen, always wears a hat and has never smoked. I thought her skin was the most beautiful I had ever seen (I am biased) until I met a female dermatologist, whose skin, even more perfect than my wife's, is blemish- and wrinklefree. I asked her how she does it and what advice she would give all those women and, these days, men who wish to have perfect skin. Her recommendations were:

◆ Avoid the sun and do not smoke. Sun exposure leads to wrinkles, blemishes and a high risk of skin cancer. Of particular concern is the explosion in the incidence of melanoma, a skin cancer that is frequently fatal. Similarly, the more you smoke, the worse your skin becomes. The combination of sun and smoking thickens the skin, promotes wrinkles and blemishes, and worst of all, increases the risk of cancer.

◆ Every morning you should wash your face with a gentle cleanser. If your skin is oily, products containing glycolic or salicylic acid are recommended. The dermatologist's favorites include Neutrogena for oily skin or M.D. Forte cleansing lotion. For dry skin, Dove, Cetaphil, Oil of Olay or Neutrogena gentle cleanser is preferred. Under no circumstance should you scrub, pick or pop your skin.

◆ Whether it is summer or winter, or sunny or raining, always apply a moisturizer containing a sunscreen. Avoid waterproof products, those with more than 10 ingredients or those that are out-of-date. Her favorite moisturizers are Olay complete, Neutrogena Healthy Skin Face Lotion or Clinique Super City Block. Whatever you use should contain either titanium dioxide or zinc oxide.

◆ Every evening you should wash with a gentle cleanser and apply a skin rejuvenation product such as M.D. Forte with glycolic acid, Oil of Olay Total Effects 7x with VitaNiacin or Neutrogena Healthy Skin. It is remarkable to me that all of her recommendations are readily available and inexpensive. Apparently, it's not too costly to maintain healthy skin.

Much research has been done on the prevention of wrinkling. Despite new anti-wrinkle creams with tremendous claims and ever-higher price tags, only the retinoids that contain vitamin A have been shown without doubt to reduce wrinkling. Retinoids encourage skin growth, smooth out fine lines (the precursor of wrinkles) and repair sun damage. These are available in the over-thecounter retinol creams but also in prescription form. If you have sun damage or want to prevent more wrinkles, discuss the use of prescription-strength retinols (Retin-A or Renova) with your physician. They can be irritating and must be applied sparingly at first. With time, they should be possible to apply to the skin more frequently.

While we can do much to maintain healthy skin, no matter how hard we try, changes will invariably occur. If you have, like most of us, abused your skin as a youngster or spent too much time outdoors and are concerned about your appearance, Botox may be a consideration for you. It certainly is the current rage and may make you look and feel younger. Injections into the face and scalp paralyze muscles, leaving wrinkles less noticeable. Changes in facial expression become impossible, giving you a doll-like appearance. If you are concerned about wrinkles, see an expert; the simple, least costly advice may be the ticket for you.

Dr. David Lipschitz is the author of the book “Breaking the Rules of Aging.” To find out more about Dr. David Lipschitz, visit