Skin anatomy

The Skin  

Ageing is a fact of life –we are all getting older. However, it is not age itself that bothers people, but the visible signs of ageing that can make us feel old. The health of our skin –whether on our face or on our body - plays a huge part in how old we feel and is seen as the most common indicator to others of our age. As the body’s largest organ, skin is hugely influenced by our body’s general well-being –if our body is not healthy, this is often reflected by our skin.

The objective of this section of the site is to educate the reader on the anatomy of the skin. With this information, the reader should understand clearly the difference between intrinsic ageing and extrinsic ageing which will be discuss in related sections on this site. It is our objective that by reviewing each individual section on the site, the reader will acquire the knowledge to make intelligent decision on ways to manage their ageing process and understand how different cosmetic and non-surgical treatments can be incorporated into their anti-ageing regime to maintain a youthful  appearance. This knowledge will also provide readers with resources to select the correct non-surgical specialists to provide their treatments.

Skin Anatomy

The Epidermis is is made up of five layers as follows:

Stratum corneum - outermost, thickest layer containing thin, flat dead cells; helps to conserve body moisture

Stratum lucidum - only in skin of palms & soles; helps regulate heat production and heat loss

Stratum granulosum - keratinization begins; continuous process by which the body rids itself of old cells and turns over new ones

Stratum spinosum - spine-like wall projections bind keratinocytes; meshwork provides great physical stability

Stratum basal - germinal layer; basement membrane above dermis

Keratinocytes, the cells that make the protein keratin, are the predominant type of cells in the epidermis. The total thickness of the epidermis is usually about 0.5 - 1 mm.

At the lowermost portion of the epidermis (Stratum Basal) are immature, rapidly dividing keratinocytes. As they mature, keratinocytes lose water, flatten out and move upward.
Eventually, at the end of their life cycle, they reach the uppermost layer of the epidermis called the stratum cornea.

Stratum Conium consists mainly of dead keratinocytes, hardened proteins (keratins) and lipids, forming a protective crust. Dead cells from stratum conium continuously slough off and are replaced by new ones coming from below. The skin completely renews itself every 3 - 5 weeks. As we age this process of cell renewal become sluggish resulting in a dull and lifeless complexion, acne, skin imperfections and skin flaccidity. We will discuss how to improve the appearance of the Epidermis in the non-surgical and diet and nutrition section of this site.

 


The Dermis
Components of the Dermis

The primary cell in the dermis is the Fibroblast, which is responsible for making collagen and elastin.

Collagen Fibers provides structural support to the skin and is the main component of the dermis
which gives the skin a youthful appearance.

Fibroblast also produces elastin which in combination with collagen gives the skin its youthful shape, elastic and resilient nature. The extracellular matrix consist of hyaluronic acid which protects collagen and elastin fibres and provides hydration to the skin.

Blood vessels which brings oxygen and nutrients to the dermis.

Lymphatics assist in drainage and waste excretion

Nerves are also located in the dermis, which carry messages about heat, cold, pressure and pain
to the central nervous system. It's this layer that supports the skin's structure, containing
collagen, elastin, hyaluronic acid (HA), and fibres

Hair follicles –constrict when we are cold and dilate when the body is hot.

Sweat glands- assist with temperature control

Sebaceous glands-lubricates the skin

A healthy dermis is essential in maintaining a young looking skin. It is the destruction of the dermis though sun exposure, improper diet and poor lifestyle which promotes the destruction of the components of the dermis resulting in premature ageing. In the ageing section of this site, we will recommend ways to preserve the dermis which will help an individual to maintain a youthful appearance even in their seventies.

Subcutaneous:
Is the deepest layer; it is a thick tissue layer composed of loose connective tissue. Embedded in this network structure are groups of fat cells, held together by collagen fibres. Fatty tissue acts as an energy reservoir, protective padding, and heat insulation. The subcutis connects the skin to deeper tissue layers.

 

anti_ageing

Treatments and indications
Treatments for lines and wrinkles glabellar, forehead and crows feet (corners of the eyes)

Dermal Fillers to enhance lips and reduce lower facial lines - deep nose to mouth lines and joweling in the lower aspect of the face

lipoatrophy - Radiesse -Jowls in the lower face or cosmetic surgery.


Topical Treatments

Cosmeceuticals anti ageing

Skin Moisturiser

Vitamin Creams

Wrinkle Creams

Sunscreen to prevent skin damage.

Texturing Procedures

AHA Peels

TCA Peels

ICP peeling system

Microdermabrasion

Combined with topical treatments.

Volumisers

Radiesse for hand and facial volumising


Hyaluronic acid -Dermal fillers -brand names Juvederm Hydrafill SoftLine Max, Belotero,Restylane.

 

Muscle Relaxants-Wrinkle Treatments

Presently there are three companies manufacturing muscle relaxants in the cosmetic market.

 

Skin Stimulation and Hydration
Mesotherapy

 

Cosmetic Surgery
facelift surgery can be the best option idepending on indications.