Our skin undergoes certain changes with age. A lifetime of exposure to the sun, habits such as diet and smoking leads to changes in our skin slowly, as we age. As we get older, the skin does not stay as smooth and firm like before. It may also become drier, thinner and more fragile. As we age, the skin also becomes more prone to bruises, which is a result of a smaller amount support around the walls of blood vessels.
Major changes that can be observed in the skin due to ageing are as follows:
- The skin turns rough
- The skin develops lesions like benign tumors
- The skin becomes slack due to the loss of elastic tissues like elastin and collagen and tends to hang loosely
- The skin gets more transparent with age, which is caused as a result of the epidermis thinning down
- The skin slowly turns fragile. This occurs due to flattening of the area where the epidermis and dermis meet
Photoaging: Over time, the harmful ultraviolet rays of the sun cause damage to fibers in the skin known as elastin. Due to the breakdown of the elastin fibers, the skin tends to sag and stretch. The ability to snap back after stretching is lost. The skin gets bruised and tears up very easily and bruises require a longer time to heal. Sun damage shows itself with ageing.
These are the changes, which occur below the surface of the skin because of aging. They include the following:
- Fat is lost under the surface of the skin on the cheeks, chin, nose, eyes and temples. This causes loosening of the skin, giving it a bony appearance with sunken eyes.
- Bone loss occurs after attaining the age of sixty, especially around the mouth and chin region. Puckering of the skin in the mouth is indicated.
- Cartilage loss may occur on the nose. This causes the nasal tip to droop down and the bony structure of the nose gets accentuated.
Other changes: Other factors such as gravity, sleeping position and facial movements also cause changes in our skin. When skin elasticity is lost, the eyebrows and eyelids may droop due to gravity. Loosening and fullness of skin is observed under the jaw, cheeks and earlobes. Facial movement lines become prominent with old age and lines appear on the forehead, temples, cheeks and at the root of the nose.
As we become old, several changes in the surface of our skin, as well as beneath the skin are likely. This is natural and occurs in every person. However, proper skin care should be taken, irrespective of your age.