Anyone who’s experienced a painful sunburn knows that excessive sun exposure can be harmful. What many people don’t realize is that passive sun exposure can injure the skin, too, even if you don’t burn. In fact, cumulative UV damage is the leading cause of skin aging, a process known as photoaging. Sun exposure causes more wrinkles, fine lines, and age spots than smoking and pollution combined, accounting for up to 90% of the visible signs of aging.
In 2017, scientific research revealed that frequently uncovered areas of the body, like the face, show much higher levels of DKN2A (a genetic indicator of aging) than areas that rarely see sunlight. In some subjects, areas of skin that were regularly protected with clothing looked 20 years younger (on a genetic level) than skin in sun-exposed areas. These results were true for both light-skinned and dark-skinned women. The message of this study is clear: Knowing how to prevent and treat summer sun damage can protect your health, your appearance, and your confidence.
The Best Cosmetic Treatments for Sun Damage
The most effective way to treat sun damage is to prevent it from happening in the first place: wear sunscreen every day, regardless of what the weather is like, and reapply it as often as needed. You should also try to avoid unnecessary sun exposure, especially between the hours of 10 AM to 4 PM. Realistically, however, it’s difficult to adhere to these rules 100% of the time. If you’re noticing fine lines or pigmentation problems despite your best efforts, these treatments can restore the smoothness and evenness of your skin:
UV rays penetrate deep below the skin’s surface, beyond the reach of most creams and mild exfoliants. To heal the root causes of photoaging, Dr. Maida Parkins resurfaces and renews damaged skin with the Hydrafacial, a comprehensive multi-step method of skin resurfacing. Our patients and celebrities alike rave about their Hydrafacial results.
The Hydrafacial system uses gentle organic acids and powerful extraction technology to remove the outermost layer of the skin before directly infusing it with nourishing serums. This process allows regenerative agents, or antioxidants, to access the dermis and stimulate deep tissue healing. The Hydrafacial system is effective for all-over skin brightening and the elimination of specific concerns, like age spots and deep wrinkles.
Retinol (Vitamin A)
Using a product that contains retinol is one of the best ways to stop and even reverse the effects of photoaging. Retinoids speed up the rate of cellular renewal, helping treated skin bounce back from the effects of UV damage and other stressors, like pollution. Retinol works best when combined with other types of professional medical skincare, including the daily use of medical-grade sunscreen and vitamin C serum.
Sun damage can cause severe wrinkling, especially around the mouth. These diffuse lines and creases can’t always be alleviated with topical treatments, but they usually respond well to dermal filler injections. Dermal fillers contain a thick gel that literally “fills in” even the most stubborn creases. The natural hyaluronic acid in dermal fillers also increases collagen production, thereby replacing collagen that’s been lost due to sun damage.
Learn More About Professional Medical Skincare in Milwaukee
Photoaging can make you look older than you’d like, but its effects don’t have to be permanent. The right cosmetic treatments can eliminate your fine lines and age spots and give you a brighter, fresher look. Dr. Parkins can also help you develop a personalized skincare routine that will keep your skin protected from the sun without limiting your activities. To learn more, contact her online or by phone at (262) 269-1050.