As we age, our bodies undergo many changes. Among these changes is the natural process of aging, which can lead to unwanted effects on our appearance — such as the appearance of lines, wrinkles and sagging skin.
Collagen is a protein that makes up the main building block for our cells, tissues, and organs — about one-third of all the protein in your body. Collagen is a long structure of amino acids that make up the protein and along with keratin and elastin give the skin its strength and elasticity.
Although we naturally produce the collagen we need, as we age, that production process becomes less efficient. Men and women produce differing amounts of collagen, with women producing the least of the two. Since we lose collagen at a rate of about 1 percent per year, this can mean that a woman has lost 50 percent of the collagen in her skin by age 50.
Aside from natural aging, there are other factors that can impact collagen production as well.
Collagen production can be disrupted by environmental factors such as exposure to sun, skin damage, poor nutrition, and exposure to toxins in pollutants, cigarette smoke, and recreational drugs. As the amount of collagen available in the body is depleted, the skin loses its natural elasticity and firmness, leading to fine lines, wrinkles, and sagging.
In addition to the external signs of aging, low collagen levels can also lead to bone mass loss and degradation. This leads to fragile, brittle bones that lose their strength and elasticity. The loss of collagen is directly related to the effects of osteoporosis.
As important as collagen is to your bones, it is even more important to your joints — joint cartilage is 95 percent collagen. As the collagen in your body depletes over time, the effects on your joints can lead to the painful development of osteoarthritis.
You can slow the degradation of collagen, though you can’t stop it completely. If you’re not already practicing a sun care regimen, now is the perfect time to start. Make sure you are using a UV filtering sunblock that will protect your skin from the harmful rays of the sun.
Likewise, eating well and practicing proper skincare can also help to slow the loss of collagen.
Although it is impossible to reverse collagen loss, there are many things you can do to mitigate the damage and improve both the physical damage and your appearance. It is possible to boost collagen production with appropriate diet and supplements. Additionally, there are procedures available that treat the effects of collagen loss.
At Pristine MedSpa we offer many services to combat the effects of aging, including treatment with Botox cosmetic and skin resurfacing, among others. Contact Pristine MedSpa today to see how our services can benefit you. You’ll be looking, and feeling, younger in no time.