Tag Archives: causes of skin wrinkles

Smoking Bad for You Inside and Out

The cosmetics sector undoubtedly cashes in on our desire to look good.

We spend large amounts of money on creams and different products to enhance or maintain our appearance.

However we often fail to remember how much what we consume affects us.

Cigarettes, which are universally acknowledged to take a toll on our lungs, are an item that can hinder our appearance as well. Whether we are simply social smokers or chain smokers, we may be doing damage to more than our lungs.

Recent research carried out by dermatologists has shown that people addicted to smoking cigarettes have around five times as many wrinkles as those who do not indulge in the habit.

Experts, noting that some studies have even proven that cigarettes yield a stronger effect than sunrays, say: “If you don’t want to experience early aging, quit smoking!”

Photo of Girl SmokingDull, wrinkled, dirty-gray skin, recognized by many as being “smokers skin,” is a phenomenon experienced by 79 percent of smokers, says Dr. Bayram Börekçi, a skin and venereal diseases expert.

Börekçi explains; “Some of the symptoms we see on smokers’ faces include permanent lines and wrinkles, as well as a collapsed facial expression resulting from the protruding bones underneath the skin.

We also see thinning skin, a light-gray appearance, as well as a light orange/purple/red coloring. The “cigarette addict’s face” is the same face seen on women over the age of 70. It is worth noting that people addicted to cigarettes start getting wrinkles very early. The amount of wrinkling is parallel to the number of cigarettes smoked over the course of a year.

Some of the factors which lead to the formation of wrinkles on the skin as a result of cigarette smoking are the widening veins due to the stimulation of the nervous system by nicotine, the reduction of oxygen in soft tissues, the increase in clotting and the reduction of collagen.”

Börekçi, mentioning the toxic, mechanical and genetic effects of smoking, notes that the reduction of moisture in smokers’ skin is connected with the toxic effect of cigarettes. The doctor also notes that the wrinkling seen around the lips of some smokers is a result of the “mechanic” effects of cigarette smoking, the muscles used when actually inhaling smoke.

He notes: “Many people believe that there are also genetic factors at play here, as not all cigarette smokers have a cigarette addict’s face. The elasticity layer in the parts of bodies which are not regularly exposed to the sun in cigarette smokers are, when compared to the same areas of the body in non-smokers, much thicker and more fragmented. The chronic reduction of oxygen to the skin also reduces the synthesis of collagen, making visible wrinkles emerge.”

He went on: “Cigarettes can cause a variety of anti-estrogen effects, such as infertility, early menopause and menstrual irregularities. The physiological effects and importance of estrogen to the skin can be seen clearly in the post-menopausal period. In women who are addicted to cigarettes, the hypo-estrogen situation that is brought about shows itself in dry skin and wrinkles.

Cigarettes reduce the levels of vitamin A in the body, which means that the cells have a greatly reduced level of protection against their number-one enemy, free radicals. This too makes it easier for wrinkles to appear. In people who already have white or grey hair, there is a yellowish color that appears in the hair because of the tar in cigarettes.

The same sort of yellowish-brown color appears on the fingers and fingernails of people who smoke. This is called a “nicotine stain.” The insides of smokers’ mouths are darker than other people’s mouths. In fact, sometimes the insides of the cheeks develop a tough, irregular whitish film. The fact that veins become narrower as a result of smoking means that it is harder for wounds to heal.

It has been shown that even smoking just one cigarette can have the effect of narrowing veins for up to 90 minutes. There are more than 4,000 chemical elements found in cigarette smoke, although it is mostly nicotine, which is responsible for the decrease in the flow of blood.”

So bearing all this mind, you might want to ask yourself: Is enjoying a cigarette really worth all this potential physiological damage you could be dealing yourself?

Smoking Gets Into Your Skin Too

Smokers can add a new health risk to the ever-growing list of hazards posed by their habit: the unsightly and often painful skin condition known as psoriasis.

We all know that smoking can effect the health of the skin, including increasing skin wrinkles, but this recent study indicates the odds of developing other serious skin conditions.

American and Canadian investigators who analyzed data from the long-running Nurses Health Study find smoking increases the risk of psoriasis by 78 percent when compared to never smoking.

The link between smoking and psoriasis is long-lasting too. Former smokers have a 37 percent higher risk overall, and the risk doesn’t decline until 20 years after a person kicks the habit.

Heavier smokers fare worse than lighter smokers too. In the study, psoriasis risk went up with the number of “pack-years” smoked. A pack-year is defined as smoking 20 cigarettes per day for one year.

Even exposure to secondhand smoke appeared to increase the danger, with a higher risk seen for study participants who were exposed to smoke while their mothers were pregnant or when they were children.

Skin Irritation from Smoking“These findings, along with well-established hazardous health effects of smoking, provide clear incentives for smoking cessation in those at risk for and suffering from psoriasis,” study author Hyon K. Choi, M.D., Dr.P.H., was quoted as saying. “Beyond the potential effect on psoriasis, smoking cessation would lead to a better overall clinical outcome in psoriasis patients, who often suffer co-morbidities related to smoking.”

This article was reported by Ivanhoe.com, which offers Medical Alerts by e-mail every day of the week. To subscribe, click on: http://www.ivanhoe.com/newsalert/.

SOURCE: The American Journal of Medicine, published October 29, 2007

Click to learn more about > psoriasis.

COPD & Facial Wrinkling Study

The presence, and perhaps the severity, of COPD might be predictable by examining the facial skin, and accelerated wrinkling could signal the need for studies of lung function.

Smoking is associated with other health-related problems, and future studies might attempt to correlate skin findings with cardiovascular disease in smokers.

Laboratory elucidation of the specific mechanism behind increased susceptibility would be useful and interesting.

Picture of Wrinkled Face from SmokingIf a genetic predisposition is identified, susceptible families and individuals might receive more urgent counsel to avoid smoking and exposure to secondhand smoke.

Learn more about > COPD.

— Jeffrey P. Callen, MD

Smoking Causes Skin Wrinkles and Premature Aging

It doesn’t take a smoking study to reveal the fact that smoking deteriorates the health of the skin and causes premature skin aging.

Some smokers skin actually turns yellowish-grey, and becomes unhealthy looking.

If you are young and just thinking about taking up smoking be for warned of the effects of cigarettes on your facial skin.

Smoking and Skin Health

Smokers have more wrinkles in their skin.

Premature Skin Aging From Smoking CigarettesSmokers tend to have particularly bad wrinkles around the mouth and eyes.

Smokers in their forties have as many wrinkles as nonsmokers in their sixties do.

Smoking affects the development of wrinkles even among people in their twenties and thirties.

Crowsfeet, wrinkles around the mouth, and damage to the blood vessels on the face are all increased from the effects of smoking along with discoloring of the skin.

Photo owned by Department of Health, DH England.