Exposure to the sun accelerates your ageing process by up to 80 percent, says Ayobami Aranmolate, a plastic and aesthetic surgeon.
Aranmolate told NAN on Monday in Lagos that the major factor responsible for speeding up ageing was the sun.
He said “exposure to sun causes most of the skin changes that we think of as normal part of ageing process.
“Ageing process starts from age 20, which is called the second decade of life when you start to notice visible signs of aging.
“Sometimes, there are certain things that affect some people and it makes them age quicker compared with others.
“Over time, the sunlight damages the fibre in the skin called elastin. The skin begins to sag, stretch and lose its ability to go back into place after stretching.
“Also, the skin bruises and tears more easily, taking longer to heal. While sun damage to the skin may not be apparent when you’re young, it will definitely show later in life.”
The medical director of Grandville Medical and Laser said areas to pay special attention to were those parts of the body that start to show signs of aging such as the face, neck, hands and feet.
He added that “we have defined lines on the face that can be seen on the forehead, under the eyes, beside the nose and under the chin. These lines are the common types of facial wrinkles.
“The lines on the front of the face has two sides. The two sides are dynamic and static wrinkles, which show on the forehead when we look up.
“These facial wrinkles can also be spotted beside the nose, called the nasolabial folds. These lines separate the cheeks and the upper lip and can become more pronounced as we get older.
“When wrinkles occur in the outer corners of the eyes, they are called crow’s feet. Crow’s feet are natural part of the ageing process.
“As we age, the neck, hands and feet also start to show signs of wrinkling.
“When it gets to a point where all these symptoms are visible, what is required are harmless surgical procedures like a face or neck lift.”
The expert noted that other factors responsible for ageing include genetics, skin type, health condition, some skin care products and a person’s diet.
“In the absence of diseases and poor health conditions, there are some people whose hands will start aging even before the second decade and this can simply be attributed to genetics,” he said.
“A dark skinned person will age less quickly compared to a light skinned person.
“When it comes to diet, taking antioxidants like vitamin C, fruits and lots of veggies is good, as the body produces a lot of free radicals.
“It is also important to know that a healthy person will naturally look better and younger than someone who is not.”
He advised that the best way to minimise the damage and wrinkles was prevention, as ageing process for every human was inevitable.