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Causes of Aging Skin Understanding intrinsic aging

Laser and Cosmetic Center Newsletter header - Spring 2013

Intrinsic aging refers to the changes that your skin goes through naturally as you age. Although intrinsic aging normally begins in our 20s, for the majority of people the signs of intrinsic aging are not noticeable for decades. Your heredity – your genes – drives intrinsic aging. Do you have your mother’s nose or your father’s eyes? We all “get” things from our parents. The same is true for youthful skin. If one or both of your parents had youthful skin well into old age, then they were lucky and you may be too.

The processes within skin that change with age include a slowing of collagen production, which is an important protein that gives skin structure. During the menopause years, estrogen drops which also contributes to loss of collagen. Furthermore, elastin, the substance that helps our skin snap back into place, is not so snappy, and the normal rate of skin cell turnover slows.

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Typical signs of intrinsic aging are:

  • Fine wrinkles
  • Thin and transparent skin
  • Loss of underlying fat, leading to hollowed cheeks and eye sockets as well as noticeable loss of firmness on the hands and neck 
  • Bones shrink away from the skin due to bone loss, which causes sagging skin
  • Dry skin that may itch
  • Inability to sweat sufficiently to cool the skin
  • Graying hair that eventually turns white
  • Hair loss
  • Unwanted hair
  • Nail plate thins, the half-moons disappear, and ridges develops

While you cannot change your genes, if you are bothered by visible signs of aging, you can take steps to reduce the effects. Injectable fillers are available to fill in hollowed areas and some even help your body produce collagen. Botulinum toxin (Botox® Cosmetic or other toxins) help diminish deep wrinkles, and laser resurfacing and chemical peels, along with some topical treatments can restore skin, giving it a smoother and refreshed appearance.

Our skin care experts are available to examine your skin, discuss your expectations, sort through the numerous options and recommend suitable treatment option to help produce the best results for you.

See our Spring Specials for discounts on
Sculptra® and NEOCUTIS products.

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Portland, Ore. 97239
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