Clariancy Treatments

Wrinkles

A wrinkle is a fold, ridge or crease in the skin.

Although wrinkles can signify wisdom, most people nowadays would rather not have them.

Many products and procedures promise to reduce wrinkles. Some do little or nothing. Others can achieve a fair amount of success.

Skin ages all over the body, but much more so where there has been sun exposure. Changes brought on by sun damage include dryness, sagginess, skin growths like keratoses ("liver spots"), and wrinkles.

Most wrinkles appear on the parts of the body where sun exposure is greatest. These especially include the face, neck, the backs of the hands, and the tops of the forearms. Wrinkles come in two categories: fine surface lines and deep furrows. Wrinkle treatments are in general much more effective for fine lines. Deeper creases may require more aggressive techniques, such injection of fillers or plastic surgery.

What factors promote wrinkles?

Factors that promote wrinkling include:
  • Smoking
  • Light skin type (people with blue eyes and easily burned skin are more prone to sun damage)
  • Heredity (some families wrinkle more)
  • Hairstyle (some styles provide cover and protection against sun damage)
  • Dress (hats, long sleeves, etc.)
  • Occupational and recreational habits (farming, sailing, golfing, using tanning booths, and so forth)

What medical treatments and cosmetic procedures are available for wrinkles?

There are several medical (topical medicines and creams) and cosmetic techniques available for reducing wrinkles.

Medical treatments:

Vitamin A Acid (tretinoin, Retin-A, Renova)
This ingredient, available by prescription, has the longest track record of success in treating aging skin and fine lines. Creams containing tretinoin must be used on an ongoing basis. They may produce redness and peeling at first, but discomfort can usually be minimized by lowering the cream's concentration or applying it less often until the skin gets used to it.
Alpha-hydroxy acids
These so-called "fruit acids" include glycolic and lactic acid. Preparations containing these fruit acids are quite safe and cause no more than mild and temporary irritation. They produce only subtle improvement, though.
Antioxidants
These include preparations that contain the vitamins A, C, and E, as well as beta-carotene. Such creams may provide a certain amount of sun protection as well as mild improvement of fine wrinkles.
Ordinary moisturizers
Creams that don't contain any of the above substances can only make wrinkles look temporarily less prominent ("reduce the appearance of fine lines").

Cosmetic procedures

Glycolic acid peels
These superficial peels can make a very slight difference in the intensity of fine wrinkles.
Deeper peels
These peels use ingredients like salicylic acid and trichloroacetic acid and penetrate somewhat deeper into the skin. Deeper peels do a better job of smoothing fine lines. The deeper the peel, however, the greater the risk of side effects, such as long-lasting pigment changes (changes in the color of the skin) and scarring. Such peels do not require anesthesia.
Microdermabrasion
This refers to "sanding the skin" with a machine containing silica or aluminum crystals. Microdermabrasion does not change skin anatomy, though it may make the face feel smoother and reduce the appearance of fine lines.
Fractional resurfacing
Newer lasers work through a modification of traditional laser resurfacing. Treatments affect not the whole skin but instead only evenly spaced spots surrounded by undamaged skin. Healing is much faster than traditional resurfacing, with less "downtime" afterward. Several treatments are needed to achieve full benefit.
Non-ablative laser resurfacing
Newer lasers attempt to stimulate collagen synthesis under the skin without peeling or damaging the epidermis. Studies and clinical experience suggest that such procedures can improve fine wrinkles, though not as much as laser resurfacing. Several treatments may be necessary. These procedures are almost painless and there is little or no redness, peeling, or downtime afterward.
Heat and radiofrequency
Another variation of noninvasive facial rejuvenation is to heat tissue using radiofrequency devises and infrared light sources. Results to date suggest that such treatments are safe and can produce visible and lasting improvement, though not as much as surgical techniques like facelifts.
Plastic surgical procedures
Surgical facelifts, brow lifts, and similar operations can be very helpful for selected patients.
Botox
Injection of botulinum toxin can relax muscles that produce the "frown lines" on the forehead, fine lines around the eyes and other wrinkles. Improvement lasts several months and must be repeated to sustain improvement.
Fillers
Fillers are injected into the skin to increase volume and flatten wrinkles and folds. For a long time, the most popular filler was collagen, whose effect only lasts a few months. More recently, new filler substances, such as hyaluronic acid have become popular, because their effect can last six to nine months, or even longer.

To make an appointment, contact us here.


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