The process of aging, particularly the visual signs of aging, seems to mystify many people. There’s a lot of confusion out there about what works, what doesn’t work, and about what you need to do to keep wrinkles, lines and other signs of aging from taking over.
Everyone ages at a different pace. Part of that is due to factors beyond your control, while another part is connected to things you can control. With that in mind, it helps to take a look at some of the more common myths about aging and the anti-aging process.
Myth: There’s No Way to Prevent Wrinkles
Obviously, no one can stay young forever, and you will start to develop some signs of aging at some point or another. But, that doesn’t mean that it’s your lot in life to deal with a lot of wrinkles. There are a few ways to minimize the wrinkles you do develop or to prevent a lot of them from forming.
The first way is by using sunscreen on a daily basis. Slather on sunscreen when it’s cold outside or when the sky is covered with clouds. You want to put it on even when you’re not planning on being outdoors for long periods of time, or at all. Remember that exposure to the sun’s rays through windows can lead to burns or signs of aging if you aren’t protected.
Retinoids, ingredients found in many skincare products, can also help reduce the appearance of any wrinkles you currently have and reduce the number of new wrinkles that form. Typically, prescription strength products contain a stronger version of retinoids while the products you find in the drugstore are weaker, but still effective.
Myth: A Facelift Lasts Forever
If only the results from a facelift were permanent. The good news is that, although you will keep aging, if you take good care of yourself, you can make the results from your surgery last for 10 years, or even longer. Taking good care of yourself after a facelift involves following your surgeon’s instructions in the weeks after surgery. It also means avoiding excess sun exposure and committing to using sunscreen daily, avoiding any unhealthy habits such as smoking or drinking in excess and watching your diet. A diet full of whole, nutritious foods will help you maintain your results longer than a diet made up of sugary and processed foods.
Myth: You Can’t Mix and Match
There’s no rule stopping you from having a facelift one year, then maintaining the results you get from the surgery with less invasive options, such as Botox injections or injectable fillers. In fact, many people see the greatest benefit and improvement when they mix and match or combine procedures. Since a facelift only focuses on the lower portion of the face, a person with sagging or drooping by the eyes might benefit from a combined facelift and eyelid lift or a combined facelift and brow lift.
Myth: You Can’t Smile
Some lines and wrinkles, known as dynamic wrinkles, do form because of repeated movements over the course of your life. The "11s" or frown lines between your eyebrows develop after years of furrowing the brow or frowning, while the crow’s feet at the outer corners of eyes develop after years of squinting, laughing or crying. While minimizing movement will minimize those lines, it can be difficult to go through your life without making any facial expression at all. Instead, let yourself smile, laugh or frown as needed. If the lines that form start to both you, remember that you can always try an injectable to minimize them.
Myth: You Have to Spend a Lot to Look Youthful
Admittedly, facial plastic surgery and non-surgical treatments such as injectable fillers or Botox do tend to have a high price tag. While these can be effective treatments, they aren’t the only way to help your skin look youthful. Depending on the degree of aging you have, all you might need is a simple moisturizer or lotion to keep your skin looking fresh and hydrated. When it comes to choosing products to use at home, take a look at the ingredients more than the price tag. A $15 bottle of lotion can be more helpful and protective, if it contains sunscreen, than a $115 product that is meant for use in the daytime but doesn’t contain sunscreen.
A double board certified facial plastic surgeon in Palm Beach, Florida, Dr. Michael Schwartz offers a customized approach to anti-aging, helping patients choose the procedures that best suit them. To learn more about your options, call 561-228-5888 to schedule a consultation with Dr. Schwartz today.