By: Dr. Robert J. Schemmer
Chronological ageing is inevitable; we cannot escape it. And the truth of the matter is, as we age, our skin (and body) requires more care and attention. Healthy skin is beautiful skin - at any age; and although the collagen and connective tissue in the dermis diminish as we age, you can still take precautions to help minimise the visible results of what ‘time’ does to our skin’s resilience and overall condition.
“As a physician, over the years, regardless of where I have worked, the most common concern amongst my patients still remains to be their skin and ageing. Though in my practice, at times, I treat my patients with cosmetic interventions - fillers, botox, chemical peels, etc; I believe it is most important to treat and educate my patients to know their skin and recognise potential problems and/or risks, before they arise. Both preventative and curative medicine are of utmost importance when it comes to maintaining a healthy and disease/sickness-free state of wellbeing.”
“I cannot stress enough, the most important thing you can do for your skin is to avoid damaging factors such as the sun, ultraviolet rays (tanning beds), heavy pollution, and smoking. You cannot reverse the damage from the sun and from smoking you may have incurred in your youth; but the sooner you adapt your life to limit exposure to both of these elements, the better you will look - and feel - in the long run. Sun protection should be part of your daily skin regime and it is important to find a product that is not only non-comedogenic (oil-free) but also has an SPF of 50 or more.”
“There is no magic solution to turn back the clock; and so, it is important that we accept and embrace that time is inevitable, time is continuous, and time brings change. With the right lifestyle, daily skin regime and healthy diet; your skin can remain as healthy and beautiful as it was in your youth, and continue to be a strong defence for your immune system, no matter what your age. Remember, healthy skin, is beautiful skin; and there is nothing bad or unattractive about ageing. It’s time to celebrate it!”
- Dr. R.J. Schemmer
Understand Your Skin Cycle
Just as we see in nature, our skin has a unique cycle of renewal and regeneration. The outermost layer - the epidermis - is constantly regenerating on average of every 28 days. This regeneration is dependant on several factors: age, health, lifestyle, and of course, genetics. Just as we are more resilient and can bounce back quicker when we are children or in our youth; the healing process, as well as overall skin regeneration, slows as we age. This is why a healthy lifestyle, adequate vitamins and minerals, sleep, and protection from harmful environmental factors are so important.
When we understand our skin, we become more patient and realistic about the things we must do to maximise our skin health. This means taking the time every day on a skin regime that works for you. Always be sure to gently cleanse, moisturise and hydrate and when it comes to resolving skin problems or concerns, be patient. Clear and healthy skin is achievable and you will get there!