In addition to the psychological and physical effects of aging, many people are discouraged by the changes to their appearance as they age—wrinkling, loss of elasticity of the skin, ptosis or sagging and drooping, and changes to the physique, and other changes.
In many ways, the effects of these changes can exacerbate other effects of aging, as poor self-image leads to depression and feelings of inadequacy, which can lead to mental and physical problems. For this and other reasons, many patients are motivated to begin a comprehensive anti-aging regimen primarily to improve their appearance.
WHAT ARE THE COSMETIC SIGNS OF AGING?
As we age, the body begins to produce less of substances such as collagen and certain hormones, causing the skin to lose its elasticity and fresh, youthful appearance, and causing tissue to lose firmness, creating the appearance of sagging and drooping. The body’s metabolism also may begin to slow with aging, making it more difficult to achieve and maintain weight loss.
What sort of treatments are available?
The first step in any comprehensive anti-aging plan is to establish a sensible regimen of diet and exercise, perhaps supplemented with hormone replacements, antioxidants, or other supplemental treatments. An effective anti-aging program can improve your health and your appearance, providing you not just with more energy, but with an more vital, youthful appearance.
In some cases, however, people find that lifestyle changes are insufficient in resolving their cosmetic issues. In those situations, many patients opt for surgical and nonsurgical cosmetic treatments to revitalize their appearance and turn back the clock.
Not every cosmetic treatment is a surgical one. Most cosmetic surgeons offer a variety of nonsurgical treatments that can help recapture some of the brightness and vitality of youth. These options include:
- Facial microdermabrasion, a technique in which the dull, outer layers of the skin are sloughed off, leaving a bright, clear, youthful new complexion
- Chemical peels, in which the dull outer layers of skin are removed with mild chemical solutions, revealing the fresh new skin underneath.
- Laser skin treatments, available in a variety of options to remove dull and aging outer layers of skin, to eliminate small spider veins, discolorations, age spots, and wrinkles.
- Collagen injections, to reintroduce natural collagen into facial features, restoring a more youthful appearance.
- Other types of cosmetic fillers, available to treat skin problems including pitting and wrinkling, to plump the lips, or fill in hollowed out areas in the face, such as the cheeks and below the eyes.
- BOTOX® Cosmetic®, a cosmetic injectable treatment to relax and soften lines and deep furrows along the forehead.
When you’re looking for more dramatic results than non-surgical cosmetic treatment can provide, there are a wide range of cosmetic surgery options available to restore a more youthful appearance to aging patients, including:
- Facelifts, in which sagging and wrinkled skin is tightened, pulling it taut over the lower face to eliminate or reduce wrinkling and sagging skin along the jaw and neck.
- Blepharoplasty, or eyelid lifts, which can lift drooping and wrinkled eyelids along the top of the eye, and eliminate or reduce bags under the eye.
- Liposuction, a procedure in which targeted areas of fat can be removed. This is helpful to many patients who have adopted a diet and exercise routine, but are discouraged by pockets of fat that are resistant to their efforts.
- Abdominoplasty, a procedure in which the abdominal area is lifted and tightened, removing excess sagging skin and tightening the underlying muscles, leaving a flatter, tauter, more youthful looking midsection.
- Breast lifts and other body lifts, which reverse the effects of sagging skin and ptosis, a condition in which tissue loses its elasticity and resilience.
To learn more about how cosmetic procedures can fit into your overall anti-aging plan, contact a reputable cosmetic surgeon in your area to discuss your options for looking and feeling your best.