Dealing with wrinkles

Due to a decrease in collagen and elastin synthesis, people between the ages of 30 and 40 encounter the first evidence of wrinkles.

Rukusha Giri

Rukusha Giri

The Kathmandu Post


File photo of wrinkled skin. PHOTO: UNSPLASH

January 12, 2024

KATHMANDU -As we age, the structure of our skin changes significantly, which can lead to the formation of fine lines and wrinkles. These changes are mostly due to a decrease in the synthesis of collagen and elastin, which are important proteins that give skin firmness and flexibility. Furthermore, oxidative stress generated by environmental stressors such as pollution, UV radiation, and smoking can harm skin cells, resulting in wrinkles. However, genetics and lifestyle decisions like bad eating habits, stress and sedentary behaviour can all contribute to the formation of wrinkles. A thorough understanding of the underlying causes of wrinkles is required for effective treatment options.Dr Rabindra Sharma is a senior consultant dermatologist at Civil Service Hospital, New Baneshwar, Kathmandu, and has been involved in the field of medicine and science for over a decade and in the field of dermatology for 14 years. Sharma has been involved in the field of medicine and science for over a decade and in the field of dermatology for 14 years. Dr Sharma shares his insights into the complexities of wrinkles, their causes and effective treatments for them.When does one start getting wrinkles?

Wrinkles are caused by the normal ageing of the skin, which involves structural and functional changes. These alterations are generally characterised by a decrease in collagen and elastin synthesis, which reduces skin elasticity and firmness. While genetics play an important part in determining the start and severity of wrinkles, it is the natural trend of skin ageing that makes a person more prone to them.

Because of a decrease in collagen and elastin synthesis, people between the ages of 30 and 40 encounter the first evidence of wrinkles. Regular exposure to UV rays, smoking, pollution and stress can all speed up the ageing process, resulting in more noticeable wrinkles.

UV radiation, in particular, can cause considerable structural protein damage in the skin, resulting in the breakdown of collagen and elastin fibres. As a result, adopting healthy habits and using high-quality skincare products is critical for protecting the skin from environmental influences that can harm its structure and accelerate the ageing process.

When do we start noticing them?

The initial evidence of wrinkles is typically small lines and creases around the eyes, forehead and lips. These tiny markings grow more visible with time, suggesting diminished skin elasticity. As collagen and elastin levels fall, the skin loses firmness, causing wrinkles to appear. Dehydration worsens the problem, resulting in dry skin that emphasises these age-related wrinkles. It is essential to recognise these symptoms for timely intervention and effective management.

What causes them?

Understanding the primary causes of wrinkles is critical for developing comprehensive treatment and preventive strategies. The natural ageing process, which causes a reduction in collagen and elastin synthesis over time, is a substantial contributor to wrinkle formation. External influences, such as extended exposure to UV radiation, can hasten the degradation of these vital skin proteins. Smoking and environmental contaminants also contribute to the destruction of collagen and elastin, fastening the ageing process. Furthermore, dehydration can cause dry skin, making wrinkles more visible. Wrinkles form as a result of a complex process driven by both genetic predisposition and environmental variables.

How does one treat wrinkles?

Addressing wrinkles necessitates a personalised strategy that takes into consideration the unique qualities of each individual’s skin. Topical retinoids produced from vitamin A can promote collagen formation and increase skin cell turnover, effectively addressing wrinkles. Botox and dermal fillers are injectable procedures that offer non-surgical options for reducing dynamic wrinkles and restoring volume to the skin. Chemical peels, which exfoliate the outer layer of skin, and laser therapy, which promotes collagen synthesis, are two other treatments to explore.

Dermatologist-guided therapies offer a personalised strategy that addresses individual issues and objectives. Aside from addressing wrinkles, implementing preventative techniques can drastically limit their occurrence. Sun protection is essential for wrinkle prevention, with an emphasis on regular usage of sunscreen with at least spf 30 to protect the skin from damaging UV radiation. Hydration is essential, both internally through enough water intake and topically through frequent moisturising. A healthy lifestyle that includes a well-balanced diet rich in antioxidants, frequent exercise, and quitting smoking improves general skin health. A continuous skin care program that includes retinoids, antioxidants and moisturisers can improve the skin’s resistance to premature ageing.

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