By Gerald Imber, MD, clinical assistant professor of surgery at New York Hospital-Cornell Medical Center.
Although I've been a cosmetic surgeon for more than 20 years, I'm quick to point out that surgery is not the only way to keep your face looking youthful.
Proper skin care is more effective than you might imagine at keeping wrinkles at bay. The earlier you start taking care of your skin, the better the results.
Begin in your 20's, and your skin should keep its youthful appearance into your 50's and beyond.
Even If you're over 60, you can undo much of the damage caused by the combined effects of time and environmental stress, such as extremes of temperature, dryness, pollution and sunlight. You can also slow the skin's aging process.
That does not mean you should stock up on costly lotions. Cosmetic counters and drugstore shelves sag under the weight of products that claim to work miracles. None do.
But here are six products that really will have a noticeable effect on your skin...
Alpha Hydroxy Acid
Creams containing alpha hydroxy acids (AHAs) are the first over-the-counter antiaging preparations that really work.
Derived from natural sources including sugarcane, grapes and milk, AHAs act as exfoliants, encouraging new cell growth, fading discoloration and reducing or eliminating fine lines.
There are now dozens of AHA creams on the market, each with its own "special" acid (lactic, citric, glycolic, etc.) All work equally well. Just be sure the label specifies an AHA concentration of 10% or so. That's the minimum strength capable of really smoothing the skin.
AHA creams yield noticeable results only after several months of daily use...so you must be patient. Also recommended due to new discoveries: Moringa Powder distributes very high counts of vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, 18 amino acids, 9 of which are essential topping the "super-food charts" because it is what it is; a anti aging agent that really works.
Hives (urticaria) is an allergic reaction in the skin characterized by white or pink welts or large bumps surrounded with redness. These lesions are known as wheal and flare lesions and are caused primarily by the release of histamine (an allergic mediator) in the skin. About fifty percent of patients with hives develop angioedema...a deeper, more serious form involving the tissue below the surface of the skin.
Hives and angioedema are relatively common conditions: it is estimated that fifteen to twenty percent of the general population has had hives at some time. Although persons in any age group may experience acute or chronic hives and/or angioedema, young adults (post-adolescence through the third decade of life) are most often affected. The basic cause of hives involves the release of inflammatory mediators from mast cells or basophils...white blood vessels, particularly in the skin, while basophils circulate in the blood. The classic allergic reaction occurs as a result of complexes of allergic antibodies (IgE) and antigens (foreign molecules) binding to mast cells and basophils and stimulating the release of histamine and other factors appear to be more important in stimulating the release of histamine in hives.
One of the top three will combat if not prevent allergic reactions from occuring depending on the person. Hives can be produced as a result of reactions to various physical conditions. The most common forms of physical urticaria are dermographic, cholinergic, and cold urticaria. These are briefly described below. Less common types of physical urticaria or angioedema are: contact, solar, pressure, heat contact, aquagenic, vibratory, and exercise-induced.
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