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Four Ways to Manage Aging Skin

Expert Chats

Worried about wrinkles as you get older? Our facial plastic and reconstructive surgeons offer some tips to help you reduce signs of aging.

Our skin changes as we age. Some of us develop wrinkles, while others have age spots and discoloration — either way, it’s something that many of us do not look forward to.

There are many options available for preventing, treating and managing wrinkles and age spots. But because there are so many options, it can be hard to decide what will work best for you.

Since changes to our skin often depend on a number of factors (sun damage, lifestyle and personal habits — to name a few), Mass. Eye and Ear doctors from the Cosmetic and Facial Plastic Surgery Center recommend choosing a path that is unique to you and your skin by coming in for a complimentary consultation.

But if you’d like a little more information before you go, we checked in with Robin W. Lindsay, M.D., and Linda N. Lee, M.D., both specialists in the Mass. Eye and Ear Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery Division, to learn more about different treatment options.

Close up of hands of cosmetologist injecting botox in female face. The woman is closed her eyes with relaxation.

#1 Injectables

A variety of injectables, such as Botox® and fillers, can improve the look of moderate to severe frown lines between the eyebrows, the “crow’s feet” at the outside corners of the eyes, forehead wrinkles, cheeks and jaws and lines around the mouth. Injectables are minimally-invasive options that aim to create a smoother appearance to the skin surface, whether it is by preventing muscle contraction, helping to retain water under the skin or promoting growth of the body’s own collagen (a protein giving your skin strength and elasticity).

Botox® is often used to prevent wrinkles or to treat them after they have developed, while filler is generally used to enhance natural facial volume (most commonly lips and cheeks) or to restore volume and contour.

Both Botox® and fillers can be administered during a quick office visit and last anywhere from six months to two years, depending on the type and the location of your face that is treated.

Who should consider injectables?

Women and men who are interested in reducing the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles, especially those who’ve lost facial volume with age and have developed thinner lips, loss of youthful cheek volume, deepening of the smile lines or marionette lines (lines running downward from the corners of the mouth). 


#2 Medical Grade Chemical Peels

Chemical peels are professional procedures that use a chemical solution to resurface the skin and remove damaged layers. This treatment causes the body to make more collagen, which results in new skin that is smoother and less wrinkled. Chemical peels are best for reducing fine lines under the eyes and around the mouth, treating wrinkles caused by aging or sun damage and reducing age spots and discoloration.

Self-neutralizing peels take roughly 15 minutes in the office and do not result in a long recovery time. This can be done as often as once a month if desired.

Who should consider chemical peels?

Chemical peels are most useful for patients with superficial fine lines and wrinkles that cannot be fully treated with filler, Botox® or surgery. Chemical peels work particularly well in patients with skin discoloration and sun damage.


#3 Surgical Procedures

When lifestyle changes, skin care and injectables aren’t enough to provide desired results, there are many surgical procedures that can help reduce signs of aging more permanently. Many of these procedures can be done in the office or in the operating room, depending on patient preference. There are a variety of different procedures available from eyelid surgery to brow- and face-lifts that can give you the facial rejuvenation that you are searching for. To learn more about the different surgical procedures, visit masseyeandear.org/cosmetic-procedures.

Who should consider surgery?

Women and men who are interested in a longer-term correction or those who desire a level of facial rejuvenation that cannot be achieved with injectables and skin care alone. Most commonly, this includes those concerned with the contour of their neck and jaw line who have platysmal banding (the appearance of a “turkey gobbler” neck), significant skin redundancy, loss of the of the jaw line because of significant jowling, sagging skin around the eyes and/or brow ptosis (eyebrows that rest too low).

Before and after photos of a woman who had a facelift
Before and after photos from a facelift performed in the Cosmetic and Facial Plastic Surgery Center at Mass. Eye and Ear.


#4 Healthy Skincare Habits

There are several things that you can actually do on your own to fight aging skin. As we mentioned earlier, how your skin ages is heavily dependent on environmental and behavioral factors, including sun damage, which is one of the leading causes of wrinkles. Sun avoidance and wearing sunscreen can help keep your skin healthy and safe.

There are also quite a few skin care products that can also help, such as Retin-A products, which help stimulate collagen formation.

Other steps such as applying moisturizer, getting the right amount of sleep, eating foods with key antioxidants and combating bad habits such as smoking can also help you maintain healthier skin.

Who should consider this?

Everyone. Even if you are considering other options, making the right changes to your routine and following general skin care guidelines will help you achieve healthier looking skin.

From changes to your daily routine to simple office procedures, there are options for everyone. If you need help determining what course is best for you or if you are interested in learning more about one of the listed treatments, call us at 617-573-3223 or request an appointment online today to set up a complimentary consultation with one of our specialists.

 

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