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 Photoaging

(Source: Raffles Hospital)

Do You Know About Photoaging?

Skin aging becomes a prominent issue as the “baby boomers” and “late baby boomers” enter their 50s and 40s respectively. Everybody desires not only to look younger, but young too. Thus new anti-aging products and devices appear overnight in this multi-billion dollar industry. The barrage of information that comes through the media and Internet often misleads rather than educate the public. It is important therefore to know what works and what does not.

What is photoaging?
Skin aging has two components: intrinsic aging and photoaging. Intrinsic aging of skin occurs as a natural part of the aging process. However photoaging occurs as a result of ultraviolet light from sun exposure. Signs of photoaging including wrinkling, sagging, roughness, loss of luster, and age spots. Excesive exposure to the sun can also cause precancerous lesions such as solar keratosis, and cancerous lesions such as squamous cell carcinoma and melanoma.

Can photoaging be avoided?
Firstly, sunscreen should be started right away. Most people deny that they are sun-exposed and think that they are spread. A walk in the park during the day, hanging out the clothes, working by an unshielded window or a long car-ride are examples of activities that are easily overlooked. Some practical advice with regards to sun protection include the following:

  • Stay out of the sun between 9 am and 4 pm as much as possible.
  • Adequate covering for the arms and legs when outdoor, and a wide-brimmed hat for the face and scalp.
  • Daily use of an appropriate sunscreen with a SPF of 20 or more.

These are various treatments available for photoaging.

  1. Sunscreen
  2. Moisturiser
  3. Tretinoin Cream
  4. AHA (Alpha-hydroxy acids) cream
  5. Antioxidants
  6. Chemical peel
  7. Soft tissue augmentation
  8. Botox injection
  9. Dermabrasion
  10. Laser resurfacing
  11. Non-invasive method

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