As we inevitably begin to age, the desire to turn back the hands of time becomes increasingly significant. There are hundreds of thousands of products that promote themselves as helping to slow down or reverse the process of aging including: creams, medical procedures and natural remedies. Below are some helpful anti-aging tips for you to implement.
The first aspect of aging that we need to address, is dry skin. As we get older, our skin tends to become more dry and itchy. In addition, we lose fat in our skin, making it thinner. When you scratch at your skin, you pose the risk of tearing the flesh, leaving you susceptible to infection. The most common form of infection is caused by staph aureus, a bacterial infection that can be serious and even fatal in elderly populations.
There are several things you can do to in order to ward off dry skin including:
- Stay Hydrated:
Drink plenty of fluids, especially water. Have you heard of the 8X8 rule? It is an easy way to remember to drink 8 glasses of 8 ounces of water each day.
- Stop Smoking:
Unless you have been have been living under a rock your whole life, you know that smoking cigarettes is bad for you. Not only is it damaging to your heart and lungs, but it ages your skin! I know quitting can prove a daunting task; however there are several resources available to you that can help you to quit now.
- Limit Your Fun in the Sun:
Excessive sun exposure can cause: sun damage, sun spots, wrinkles and dry skin. Limit the time you spend soaking in those rays. Remember peak hours of the ultraviolet (UV) rays are between 10:00 am- 3:00 pm, Pacific Standard time. If possible avoid these hours. Always wear a sunscreen with a sun protection factor (SPF) of 30. Please, stay out of tanning beds altogether!
- Avoid Hot Water:
When you shower, try turning the water at least two degrees less than your preferred heat, or a lukewarm temperature. The hotter the water, the drier the skin. I would opt not to take baths, unless they are short 10 minute bath soaks for eczema including: baking soda soaks, bleach baths, vinegar sit soaks and Epsom salt baths.
There are many other contributing factors of dry skin including: fragrances, dyes, prescription medications, deodorants and anti-perspirants. In addition, health issues including diabetes and kidney disease can cause the skin to become more vulnerable.
Moisturize and Moisturize Again
The best way to combat dry skin and aging is by properly moisturizing your skin. Because you skin becomes thinner and weaker with age, it is absolutely imperative that you utilize a moisturizer that focuses on skin barrier optimization (SBO) and essential skin lipid replacement. Ceramides, are a skin lipid making up about 42% of your epidermis.
These skin lipids get lost due to sun damage and other environmental factors including, hot and dry climates. It is important to replenish them.The best skin care products will contain ceramides. Apply at least twice daily. For drier skin, three times will prove more beneficial.
Look for skin care products that are 100% hypoallergenic and free of allergens and irritants including: parabens, sulfates, formaldehyde, oatmeal and gluten.
Dr. Cheryl Lee Eberting is a board certified dermatologist who has dedicated her career to research and treatment of skin ailments. She writes regularly at cherylleemd.com