As we grow older, our skin will start to deteriorate and show signs of aging just like any other organs in our body. This is exacerbated by environmental factors like UV exposure and pollution. We may experience various skin conditions such as rough and dry skin, wrinkles, pigmentations and saggy skin. In this article, I would like to share with you some simple and effective treatments that you can consider to rejuvenate your skin.
The amount of hyaluronic acid in our skin decreases as we age, leaving our skin rougher and drier. A popular treatment is to use skin boosters to replenish the amount of hyaluronic acid in the skin. This will help to draw water from within to provide long lasting hydration, giving your skin a dewy and radiant look. These tiny hyaluronic acid droplets are injected into the skin layer using fine needles and they will also stimulate collagen at the same time. This is a treatment with minimal downtime and most people can start to see the effect after 2 to 4 weeks. I recommend repeating the treatment every 6 months for best result.
Another treatment is Rejuran Healer, also known colloquially as the ‘Baby Skin Booster’. This is a popular treatment as it has many benefits for the aging skin. The key component is salmon DNA extract, which is effective in repairing and rejuvenating damaged skin. The treatment is carried out in the same way as the hyaluronic acid skin booster by using fine needles to deliver the product into the skin layer.
It is common to have more wrinkles and fine lines as we age. Dynamic wrinkles are caused by muscle movements when we smile, laugh or frown. If left untreated, they can progress to static wrinkles which are much harder to treat. A common treatment for dynamic wrinkles is the use of Botox. By temporarily paralysing and softening the muscles responsible for the wrinkles, Botox can help to soften and smooth these wrinkles. Botox has minimal downtime and the effect lasts an average of 4 to 6 months.
Wrinkles not due to muscle movements can be treated using radiofrequency (RF) energy devices. RF devices generate heat to stimulate collagen and tighten the skin. This helps to reduce wrinkles and skin laxity. Other energy based devices like fractional laser resurfacing or fractional RF microneedling can also be used to achieve similar effects. Depending on the type of machine used, the treatment should be repeated to achieve longer lasting results.
Skin pigmentation is a common disorder in Singapore due to our tropical climate. Pigmentary disorders like melasma, freckles, sunspots and age spots are all due to overproduction of melanin, which is produced by melanocytes (pigment cells). One of the most common causes is UV and visible light exposure, which are known to stimulate melanocytes.
The best treatment for pigmentation is using lasers such as the nanosecond Q-switched, picosecond or yellow lasers. With a picosecond laser, we have the added advantage of creating a laser induced optical breakdown (LIOB) effect during treatment, which helps to shatter pigments and stimulate collagen at the same time. The yellow laser can be used to target the blood vessels and hence can be used to treat vascular disorders as well. Depending on the type of pigmentations, laser treatments can be repeated or combined with other agents to achieve the best result.
The main cause of saggy skin is due to loss of collagen and elasticity. A popular non-invasive treatment is the use of high-intensity focused ultrasound (HIFU) devices. Unlike the RF devices, HIFU can generate heat to target the deeper layers under the skin. Using the 4.5mm handpiece, we can treat and tighten the superficial musculoaponeurotic system (SMAS) layer, effectively lifting the sagging skin. This is the same layer that plastic surgeons target during a facelift surgery. For people with moderate to severe sagging, HIFU should be combined with other treatments such as fillers or threadlift to achieve the best result.
Apart from lifting, HIFU treatment can also help to reduce fats in the lower cheek and double chin region, making it an excellent treatment for anti-aging and facial contouring.
In Summary, there are various effective anti-aging treatments to address your skin concerns especially if they are mild, or you are not ready to go under the knife yet. These seemingly simple treatments are not without risks, and should be done by a certified doctor at all times. Speak to a qualified and experienced practitioner to discuss your skin concerns today.
Written by Dr. Wu Jiwei,
MBBS, PG Dip (Clinical Derm) (UK)
Disclaimer: The material contained in this is for informational purposes only and do not constitute medical advice. The content is not intended to be a substitute for doctor's advice, diagnosis, or treatment.