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Ageing getting you down?

Posted on 22 August, 2019

Ageing Ageing, we are all busy doing it. The way it makes you feel has been a subject of interest of mine for a while now, not least because I am getting into that "older" age bracket myself. On that note, I had a Perfect Peel yesterday. I do not normally do that at this time of year. I normally do it once a year around January. The reason that I did it is because this past couple of weeks I have been feeling a bit old and looking in the mirror and thinking, "ugh, I look a bit old". In clinic I have found quite often that when people come in, and they feel like they have aged overnight, often it is following on from a period of ill health, physical health or emotional health or just a period of stress or following pregnancy. Now we all know that ageing does not happen overnight but it is quite often the feeling we get. Faking it The reason for my peel? My logic is this, if you are feeling a bit tired, a bit low, just rundown, stressed, upset, any of the negative emotions, for me, I feel like if I make myself look better, then what happens is when I am out and about, the feedback that I get from people around me is more positive because they cannot see how I am really feeling, and because their feedback is positive, it makes me feel better. So that is super logical, no? By making yourself look a bit better, you get a better response from the people around you, and that positivity starts to rub off on you. This is one of the things that I did to manage, the days that I feel like life is getting me down. It really does work, not necessarily a peel but whatever small thing you can do to present a little more positivity to the world so that it is reflected back at you! Ageing, I think, is something that most of us will be aware of at some point. It is a really different experience for everyone. Some cope really well with ageing and are really not bothered by it. For others it can be a more difficult process. Anecdote time When I worked in general practice, I had a lady that I looked after on a regular basis. She had a leg ulcer, the poor thing. She was in her 70s, and I had only ever known her, as "an old lady". One day I was dressing her leg and she said to me, "Do you know what? Today I went to cross the street. And I stood at the zebra crossing, and I stood there and I stood there. Not one car stopped to let me go. I must've stood there about 10 minutes before I finally got to cross the road." And then she said with a wistful look in her eye "I remember the days when cars would screech to a halt to let me cross because I was out in my thigh-high boots and my miniskirt." The look in her eyes as she told me this was something that has never left me because it was something about her perceived loss of visibility by the world, whilst she was looking out into the world from the same body, the same person. She was still that girl in the miniskirt and thigh-high boots. those people looking on her from the outside, she was no longer there. She was just "an old lady". For me it is a poignant story and it made me think a lot about about how especially as women, our position does change as we age. I do not just mean that big transition but even smaller ones, for me, the transition from  a 20-something to a 40-something . From 40-something to a 60-something is going to be even more different. I am sure it does happen for men, but I do think it is probably a bit more relevant to women. The positives However, let us remember too that there are lots of amazing things about ageing. We are very privileged that we get to experience the longevity that a lot of us do and the different points in our lives and the challenges that we face that then become or help us to develop new strengths, the experiences, the friendships. Oh, there are many amazing things, the confidence, that feeling again of self-worth, of being that little bit more comfortable in your own skin and your own self that comes from ageing. The ability to keep things in perspective a bit more. Being more compassionate, being more understanding, these are all qualities growing as we age.   The negatives I think there are lots of things that are great about ageing, but there are also the negatives that we do not like so much, the loss of gravity, the sagging, the drooping. But it is what we all do. We all get older. I believe that managing ageing, primarily involves health-giving activities. So lifestyle has always been super important for me. Watching the diet, watching the exercise, watching the alcohol, watching the smoking, trying to make time for yourself to alleviate stress, spending time with friends. All of those kind of health-giving activities, I think, are essential with managing all kinds of aspects of ageing. As I was saying earlier, that feeling good emanates in the way that you look, which then elicits a much more positive response from people around you. So for me that is also really important, keeping that going, because the positivity that you get from people when you are out and about, can only make you feel better about yourself. For me there is no other way. So yes, managing ageing for me addresses the physical, the emotional, the aesthetic because they are intrinsically linked. Obviously, my area of expertise is the skin. You have got a whole plethora, a whole multitude of sins that are occurring within the skin as you get older, and much of it is going to be programmed by your genes, so you are always going to have that friend that really does not deserve to have great skin but has, and likewise people that do not drink, do not smoke, look after themselves amazingly, and still, really struggle with their skin, and that is genes for you, is it not? The Issues In terms of ageing, you know how it feels, saggy, miserable, tired.   The Problem Static lines These are the lines that occur in the skin that lies over muscles that move the skin. Typically the frown, the forehead, the crow's feet. The treatment Botox The starting point Once you have noticed "soft" line appearing in your skin   The Problem Volume loss typically starts in the mid face then the temples, around the mouth The treatment Dermal fillers The starting point Once you have noticed that you are losing volume, you can use very small amounts to prevent further loss. The Problem Skin texture issues, pigmentation, fine lines, dullness, scarring The treatment Chemical Peels / needling devices / prescription skincare The starting point Once you have noticed any deterioration in skin texture or brightness.    Priorities If you can tick all of these boxes, then working out your priorities involves deciding what others you the most. What can you disguise more easily, what is more difficult? If you know you want to go down this path then do not put it off too long, the earlier you start, the better the outcome and the easier to maintain. The later you start, the more product you will need, the less impact treatments will make and the more often you will need to treat. So ageing and confidence, I do think they are linked. If you are out there and you are starting to feel the impact of any of the things I have mentioned, please get in touch and let us work out a plan for you. I would love to hear from you and help navigate your journey and share some of my tips and tricks with you.