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Most people think that having a smoking habit adversely affects only the lungs and the heart. But apart from known links to lung cancer and heart disorders, smoking also causes skin damage. The intensity of damage is directly proportional to the number of cigarettes one smokes in a day and the number of years one has been smoking for.
Here are 7 of the horrible things that smoking does to your skin
1. Premature ageing: the process of skin ageing is accelerated by a smoking habit. The chemicals that are ingested through the smoke cause your skin to age much faster, making it look loose, dull and coarse, with uneven colouring. Most smokers have a muted orange or grey tinge to their complexions.
2. Wrinkles and lines: the nicotine from smoke constricts blood vessels in the outer layers of the skin, thereby cutting off the supply of oxygen and nutrients. This causes the skin to develop visible fine lines and wrinkles at a faster rate.
3. Scarring and pigmentation: since blood is not flowing properly to the outer layers of the skin, it is more susceptible to broken capillaries and veins, which can cause dark scarring and pigmentation on the face and other areas.
4. Darkening of the lips: constant exposure to heat from smoking causes stark darkening and pigmentation in the lips, which also become dry and coarse.
5. Delayed wound healing: the presence of nicotine, tar and other chemicals in the blood causes cuts and wounds on the skin to heal at a much slower pace with an increased risk of infection, blood clot formation and death of skin tissue.
6. Increased risk of skin disease: smoking makes the skin prone to various diseases and conditions like psoriasis, which happen as nicotine adversely affects the body's immune system.
7. High chances of skin cancer: skin cancer and oral cancer are the two lesser known variants of the diseases that can be caused by smoking. Skin cancer is far more common among smokers than among non-smokers.
The harmful effects of smoking on the skin are not entirely discernible until after 10 years of prolonged smoking. Fortunately, your skin starts to heal itself when you kick the habit.
Corns and calluses are defined as thickened and hardened areas of the skin, which are formed due to excess pressure, friction or rubbing in a particular area. They generally form at the bottom of the feet and can cause discomfort and pain while walking. Corns usually form on the sides and tops of toes. There are several variants of corn such as hard corn, soft corn and seed corns. Calluses typically form in areas which undergo high friction. It can appear on hands and feet. Read on to find more about corns and calluses.
1. In some cases, corns or calluses may form due to improper walking motion but in most cases corns and calluses form due to wearing shoes which fit in an improper manner.
2. High heels in particular are a major reason for the formation of corns and calluses. Other reasons include foot deformities or wearing shoes and sandals without socks.
3. Corns and calluses have a risk of being infected by bacteria which causes the infected region to secrete pus or fluid.
There are different types of corns and calluses and each of them have different symptoms during their formation.
1. A callus is a small patch of dead skin which can form anywhere in the body but usually in places which undergo friction.
2. A hard corn is a patch of hard skin which is located outside the little toe or on top of a toe.
3. A soft corn is a sensitive red patch of skin which is typically found between toes.
4. A seed corn is a painful patch of dead skin which typically forms on the ball of the foot or on the heel.
If you have developed a corn or a callus it is advisable to consult a doctor as they can correctly differentiate between warts and calluses. Use of moleskin around the corn or callus usually reduces the pressure from the affected region. Oral antibiotic medication can also be prescribed by your physician. Certain moisturising creams also help treating corns and calluses. Opt for stronger moisturising creams after consulting your doctor if regular ones are not helping. In certain instances corns and calluses may need to be surgically removed.
You may have heard a lot about teen acne and things related to it, especially its nature and solutions to cure this skin condition. However, there are several misconceptions about acne. Many facts regarding the cause and remedy for acne, which are commonly talked about, are incorrect. Here are some myths and facts about teen acne you should know about:
- Tanning clears the skin: A tan may act as a temporary mask to prevent acne. However, the sun dries up the skin and irritates it. This may further lead to acne breakout. There is no link between exposure to the sun and acne prevention, and the rays of the sun can cause damage to the skin. You should always use a sunscreen while going out in the sun.
- Wash your face to prevent acne breakouts: Washing your face helps in removing the dirt and oil from the pores of the skin. However, too much washing may cause dryness and irritation, triggering more acne breakout. You should not scrub your face and use a mild soap or a facewash to wash your face.
- Popping pimples will help in faster elimination: Popping pimples makes them less noticeable for some time, but it causes the pimples to last longer. When you squeeze a pimple, you push bacteria, dead skin cells and oil back into the skin. This causes increased swelling and reddening. It might also cause a red or brown scar, which takes a lot of time to disappear. Some of these scars last forever.
- Stress leads to acne: The normal daily stress a teenager faces does not lead to acne. However, in the case of stressful periods, such as dealing with the death of a loved one or facing parent’s divorce, the skin produces extra oil or sebum. This does not always mean that you will get more zits and pimples.
- Acne is curable: Acne is not curable. It is chronic in nature and may last for a very long time. It is like a continuous situation which keeps on recurring on the skin. It may come and go several times and in case you are prone to acne, you will face a hard time dealing with it.
- Pimples occur overnight: Another common misconception regarding acne is that pimples occur overnight. The truth is that a pimple takes weeks to develop but it may surface while you are asleep. The process of acne development is a complicated one and involves four steps.
Many people think that applying cold water closes pores and hot water opens pores. This is not true as the pores present all over your face do not have muscles. They cannot open and close. If you wish to discuss about any specific problem, you can consult a Dermatologist.
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