As we get older, we have to watch our skin changing—and not for the better. Youthful skin is supple and firm, giving us a “glow” that starts to fade with the beginnings of aging. Aging skin begins to acquire blemishes, folds, wrinkles, poor texture, and sagging. Although this happens to everyone eventually, the good news is that you can breathe new life into your skin to help preserve its youthful firmness and even reverse sagging skin. But why does skin sag in the first place? Before you dive into all the exciting treatments that are now available for keeping the skin youthful and tightening sagging skin, it’s helpful to know exactly why it happens so that you can take steps to slow down this natural process.
Collagen: The Foundation of Skin
Collagen and elastin form the foundation of youthful, elastic skin. They support and connect the skin, allowing it to remain supple, smooth, and firm. However, aging and sun exposure cause damage to the skin, which eventually leads to sagging. Collagen and elastin production slow down with age. Harmful UV (ultraviolet) rays of the sun damage skin cells and break down the skin’s elasticity. As collagen breaks down in the skin and is not replenished by the body as readily, skin begins to sag. This is one of the leading factors in sagging skin.
Loss of Volume
Aside from the slowdown in collagen production, loss of volume in the skin and facial tissues plays a big role in causing the skin to sag. As volume loss occurs alongside reductions in collagen and elastin, the skin is tasked with a challenge it can’t really live up to. Skin naturally contracts during our lifetime as we grow and gain or lose weight. Unfortunately, the loss of collagen paired with volume loss often makes it difficult or impossible for skin to retract properly, causing it to sag and hang instead. Thinning skin, loss of facial fat and overall volume leads to deep folds and sagging skin that will not tighten on its own.
Gravity and Muscle Weakness
The effects of gravity over time do play a subtle role in sagging skin. On top of that, muscle weakness in the facial muscles can worsen sagging skin, although this is not as much of a concern as changes in the skin and facial volume.
Simple Solutions to Sagging Skin
Now that we know what causes sagging skin, how can we slow down its progression? Fortunately, many aesthetic skin treatments work by stimulating the production of collagen. It’s an entirely natural method of restoring the skin’s youthful glow, and it is usually achieved by using radiofrequency or light energy to speed up collagen production. Some of the skin-tightening treatments available are Thermage, Skin Tyte, and TriPollar.
- Thermage is a great option for tightening skin on the face and neck. Using radiofrequency energy, the skin can be tightened even in the trickiest areas of the face, such as the eyelids.
- Skin Tyte is an infrared light therapy that comfortably tightens the facial skin in specific areas.
- TriPollar, like Thermage, also uses radiofrequency energy—with a bonus. The TriPollar device not only lifts and tightens the skin, it shrinks fat cells. What’s not to like? It’s even a good choice for treating cellulite.
Choosing the Right Provider
For non-invasive skin tightening procedures, you may not think that an expert plastic surgeon’s skill is necessary. However, properly using these powerful devices requires considerable skill. Worse, these treatments can pose a safety risk in the wrong hands. Your best bet is to choose an expert in skin tightening treatments, like the team at Hillelson-Whipple Clinic. Our experienced team has performed thousands of Thermage treatments and are known for their excellent results in this procedure. If sagging skin has got you feeling down, call Hillelson-Whipple Clinic in Richmond, VA, to schedule your consultation today at 804.290.0060.