You might not notice the damage now, but this is how the sun might be affecting your skin.
We all know the sun can affect our skin and most of us have experienced sunburn at one time or another. But sunburn clears and as our next holiday approaches we tend to forget about those tingling, burning woes of moments passed. But these are the short-term consequences of sun damage and only the beginning of the nasty effects it can have on our skin. Unfortunately, there are a number of long-term effects of continued exposure that we may not even see. We have complied this list to give you the lowdown of what neglected skin can expect to suffer in the days, months and years following sun damage.
Our skin produces its own natural oils that work to keep it moisturised. When unprotected from the sun, those oils are striped away, resulting in a dry, flaky complexion and sore, chapped lips. This can be both immediately noticeable and get more severe over time.
The development of lines and wrinkles as we age are both natural and beautiful. That said, there are environmental factors that cause premature ageing that can be controlled. Exposure to ultraviolet (UV) radiation is one of them and it can have a considerable effect on our skin. As opposed to UVB rays that cause the burning hot sensation we can actually feel, UVA rays are more of a silent assassin. They penetrate deep into our skin undetected working to degrade collagen and our skin’s natural elasticity. This causes all sorts of unwanted signs of ageing that include:
- Fine lines and wrinkles: Commonly crow’s feet, forehead wrinkles and smile lines
- Loss of shape: Over time the skin starts sagging and losing definition
- Uneven skin tone and texture: You may start to notice sunspots, discolouration and visible pores
- Actinic Keratosis: These are rough patches of skin that develop over years of sun exposure. They vary in size and colour and can be painful and itchy. They are usually harmless but should be kept an eye on as in some cases can develop into skin cancer.
The most serious consequence of skin damage, sun exposure is the main cause of most skin cancers. UV light can damage the DNA in our skin cells, which in turn causes cancer. Spending long periods out in the sun and getting sunburnt are both major contributing factors.
The effects of prolonged exposure to the sun vary in severity but they are all reasons to protect ourselves before we start to notice the damage caused. It’s important to remember that there really is no such thing as a healthy tan and that safeguarding our skin is something we should be actively thinking about all year round. Take these steps to ensure you maintain a nourished, youthful and glowing complexion:
- Wear UVA/UVB SPF50 sunscreen all year round (yes, even when it’s cloudy!)
- Look after your skin and make sure you never burn
- Spend time in the shade-especially between 11am and 3pm on sunny days
- Accessorise with big hats and sunglasses for added protection
- Never use sunbeds (fake tan is just as good!)
- Stay moisturized with your favourite moisturising cream
- Keep hydrated
Softening the signs of ageing
At VIVA Skin Clinics we know that for even the most careful, skin damage happens. When it comes to dry skin and premature ageing, we have a variety of treatments available that can help to turn back the hands of time. Our selection of chemical peels are particularly good for overhauling your general complexion. Anti-wrinkle injections can be used to smooth fine lines and wrinkles and dermal fillers are perfect for restoring lost volume.
If you are interested in discussing our treatment options, you can book a consultation today by using our handy online booking feature. You can also give one of our friendly team a call on 02037 332199 or email [email protected].