There are certain physical indications of aging. One of the most common is changes in the skin. Some call them laugh lines, others call them worry lines, but let’s be real, they are wrinkles. Wrinkles are one of the first physical symptoms we recognize as we age.
Wrinkles are a result of a loss of elasticity and flexibility in the skin. Sun and smoking are the main cause of premature wrinkles. Finding a good moisturizer, sunscreen, and making sure to wear a hat and cover up when exposed to the sun can keep wrinkles to a minimum.
Dry skin is another common complaint in elderly adults. As we age, our bodies reduce oil production to our skin, including the scalp. This may not seem like much of a problem, except dry skin is itchy and when we itch, we scratch. Excessive scratching can cause injury to the skin in the form of breaks in the skin which could, in turn, become infected. It is important to keep skin moist with a moisturizing lotion. Bathing everyday will also cause the skin to become overly dry. Consider reducing the number of times you bath in a week.
Another skin disorder, which is more serious than all the others, is skin cancer. It is crucial to keep exposure to the sun at a minimum, so avoid being out in the sun in the heat of the day, between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. Cover up when you go out. Keep sunscreen applied. And, most importantly, have moles and “age” spots checked by a doctor regularly.
Some other recommendations for taking care of your skin are:
- Use soap that contains a moisturizer or is specifically formulated for dry skin.
- Drink plenty of fluids every day to prevent dehydration.
- Limit caffeine consumption as it tends to dry you out.
- Use a humidifier to add moisture to the air.
While we can’t turn back time, we can be intentional about caring for our skin which will result in our comfort.