What causes wrinkles? What can be done to reduce wrinkles? What is the most effective anti-wrinkle product?

You will find in this article and in this video :

- How wrinkles appear

- Free radicals: definition, actions, prevention

- Oxidative stress and chain reactions

- Risk factors for the appearance of wrinkles

- How to prevent the appearance of wrinkles

- Anti-wrinkle products and the different active ingredients

- Deep wrinkle treatments: surgery, dermabrasion, collagen injections, hyaluronic acid and botox

To begin with, you should know that the first wrinkles generally appear around age 30. They are due to the aging of the skin cells.

The factors that can promote this aging are :

Genetics, some people are more or less sensitive to the aging of their cells

The decrease in the level of various hormones, especially during menopause when there is a progressive reduction in sex hormones (estrogens), which have a protective role against aging

Exposure to the sun, UV rays promote the aging of skin cells

Hygienic and dietary factors (alcohol or tobacco consumption, lack of physical activity, overly acidic diet, dehydration, stress, etc.)

It is important to know that all factors that lead to the production of free radicals (atoms or molecules with a free electron, i.e. not linked to another electron), cause stress in the cells, called oxidative stress. 

Let me remind you that atoms are chemical elements that combine to form molecules.

Atoms are made up of a nucleus around which particles of negative charges called electrons and particles of positive charges called protons gravitate.

It is important to know that chemical reactions between atoms and molecules are achieved through the bonding of electrons.

When a chemical substance such as an atom or a molecule has an electron that has not bonded to another electron, it becomes unstable and it tries to stabilize itself by bonding to an electron of another atom or molecule that will then lose its stability in turn, and so on. This leads to the accumulation of chain reactions that cause cells to become unstable and age.

The consumption of alcohol or tobacco favors and increases the production of free radicals which are very toxic for the cells of our body (accelerated aging, carcinogenic, ...).

On the contrary, antioxidants are chemical substances that limit the formation of free radicals and neutralize their actions. 

Antioxidants are real cell protectors. They are mainly found in fruits and vegetables. Their regular consumption helps to protect cells against aging.

The lack of consumption of fruits and vegetables is therefore also a factor that promotes cell aging.

How to spot the first signs of aging of our skin?

There are different signs that can alert us to the aging of our skin cells such as

Heliodermia also called photoaging, these are all the signs of aging caused by the sun such as the appearance of spots, wrinkles, skin dryness, the skin becomes increasingly rough and it tends to thicken.

The loss of skin elasticity, it becomes slack

Reduction of skin volume, cheekbones become smaller, the face becomes hollow

Facial expressions that cause wrinkles to become more pronounced

To treat and prevent the signs of skin aging, it is first necessary to limit the risk factors I mentioned above.

It is also recommended to drink at least 1.5 L of water per day and to moisturize your skin every day with a moisturizer adapted to your skin type (dry or oily skin).

The application of an anti-sun cream (with a suitable protection factor) is also recommended to limit the harmful effects of UV radiation.

As far as anti-wrinkle creams are concerned, there are many products on the market.

I would like to draw your attention to the fact that in order to have a minimum of results with these products, they must contain interesting active ingredients in quality and quantity.

These active ingredients are, for example

Vitamin E

Collagen, a protein naturally present in the skin. Its function is to give elasticity to the skin and to stimulate the renewal of skin cells. Know that the production of collagen decreases with age, the more we age the more our production of collagen decreases, which promotes the aging of our skin.

Vitamin A derivatives such as retinoids (retinol). They help fight against oxidative stress and stimulate the renewal of skin cells, which becomes more and more complicated with increasing age. Vitamin A derivatives also help in the production of collagen to fill in wrinkles.

I would like to draw your attention to the fact that UV rays and exposure to the sun cause retinoids to break down and lead to the formation of free radicals, so if you ever opt for a retinoid-based cream, it is recommended that you apply it at night.

Hyaluronic acid is a substance naturally present in the skin. Hyaluronic acid is a humectant, which means that it promotes the entry of water into the skin cells, allowing them to be hydrated. This allows their hydration. It helps to have a pulpy skin. Sodium hyaluronate is a derivative of hyaluronic acid with a smaller size which allows it to reach deeper layers of the skin.

Alpha-hydroxy acids or AHAs are powerful exfoliants. They allow to detach old and dead cells from the skin and to stimulate its renewal,

To reduce the appearance of wrinkles, these active ingredients must be applied in an effective dose, but also on a daily basis. The first results start to appear after a few months or even years.

Be aware that these creams only have a superficial action.

To treat wrinkles in depth, it will be necessary to turn to plastic surgery such as laser or dermabrasion.

Dermabrasion consists of removing the superficial layer of the skin with a brush or a rotary cutter with a rough surface. It is a technique that can be used to remove tattoos or certain moles. The skin is then reconstituted through the healing process.

Subcutaneous injections of collagen, hyaluronic acid or botox are also performed to treat and prevent wrinkles in depth.

Botox or botulinum toxin prevents the contraction of muscle cells, which results in a smoother and less wrinkled appearance of the skin.

These surgeries and injections can present risks and possible complications. It is therefore very important to discuss them with your doctor before considering this type of treatment.

Dr Noura Marrai (Doctor of Pharmacy, YouTuber Health, creator of the health well-being Pharmaquiz application),

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