During the ’50s, cigarette smoking was the height of sophistication and glamor. Hollywood heartthrobs such as James Dean and Marlon Brando were never without a cigarette.
Actors such as Clark Gable, Bette Davis, and Joan Crawford received thousands of dollars to promote tobacco products.
Today, cigarette smoking’s harmful effects are well established, and the promotion of tobacco products, banned. Unfortunately, the information hasn’t filtered through to over 35 million Americans who smoke around 249 billion cigarettes a year.
Apart from the havoc smoking plays on the heart, lungs, and cardiovascular system, the skin and face also bear the brunt of this unhealthy habit.
The nicotine in tobacco restricts the flow of blood to your skin. Worse still, free radicals found in cigarette smoke and tar have a detrimental effect on elastin and collagen production. Both of which give skin its natural elasticity and bounce.
With an average cigarette containing over 5000 chemicals, the results are lines, wrinkles, saggy skin, and an alteration of the skin thickness on the forehead and cheeks.
“The dangers of cigarette smoking are well known,” says multi-award-winning facial plastic surgeon Dr. Steven Dayan. But are e-cigarettes any better?
“The harm from smoking is caused primarily from the toxins produced by the burning of tobacco,” he explains. “While some studies have shown electronic cigarettes are safer than conventional cigarettes the jury is still out, they have yet to be unequivocally proven safe.”
Citing research by the Mayo Clinic NY Times best-selling author, Dr. Dayan says that nicotine and traces of toxic chemicals are present in e-cigarettes. And this may prove detrimental to the skin and cause premature aging.
Repairing Smoke Damaged Skin
Thankfully, whether electronic or real, the signs of prematurely-aged skin, facial lining, and wrinkles are treatable. “We have a number of procedures capable of tightening and smoothing the skin,” says the double board-certified facial plastic surgeon. “These procedures also stimulate collagen growth deep within the skin,” he adds.
“Due to the rise in popularity of non-invasive aesthetic medicine,” says Dr. Dayan. “We offer a full range of minimally invasive skin-tightening procedures. We perform these in our N. Michigan Avenue premises in Chicago. Rarely is anesthesia needed and the risk for serious adverse event is very low and exceedingly uncommon.” he explains.
Aesthetic procedures offer great results and of significant importance is the fact that downtime is minimal. Treatment times average 5 minutes to one hour, depending on the area being treated. “It is important to remember,” explains Dr. Dayan, “that these are progressive treatments. While some procedures can produce immediate results for many of the skin tightening procedure the best outcomes are realized progressively over the next three to six months. .”
“We use multiple technologies for skin tightening.” explains Dr. Dayan, “which can improve mild to moderate fine lines and wrinkles occurring around the eyes and mouth. These procedures typically use advanced micro-needling and fractional radiofrequency devices.”
Here, deeper layers of skin and fat are affected by tiny needles and fractionated radiofrequency energy. The treatment encourages the skin’s natural healing process. It tightens, and smooths lax regions for an impressive rejuvenation effect, and all without the need for surgery, which has to be good news for smokers.