"The groundwork of all happiness is health." - Leigh Hunt

Can facial exercises reverse the signs of aging?

Patients often come into my office asking, “How can I look younger?” Although I all the time advocate a healthy lifestyle — a balanced weight loss plan and regular exercise — to feel and look younger, I never considered facial exercises as a part of that regimen. That is, until a recent one the studyPublished in JAMA Dermatologyshowed promising results that regular facial exercise can decelerate the relentless tide of time.

Facial Exercises: The Fountain of Youth for Your Face?

The rationale behind this research is that a big a part of facial aging is brought on by the lack of fat and soft tissue, which results in wrinkles and exaggeration. If we will lift weights within the gym and make our biceps larger, why can't the identical be done for our facial muscles, thus filling out those contours and making a younger face?

The concept of facial exercise will not be latest. An easy Internet search will produce numerous blog posts and books on the topic, mentioning a wide range of programs that promise to be the following fountain of youth. what JAMA Dermatology In their study, which was the primary of its kind, the researchers sought to look at this query from a more rigorous scientific perspective. They enrolled 27 women between the ages of 40 and 65 to exercise half-hour a day for eight weeks after which every other day for a complete of 20 weeks.

Dermatologists who didn't know the participants were asked to rate their photos before and after the exercise regimen. Dermatologists observed improvements in cheek plumpness and estimated the age of the participants to be 51 years at first of this system and 48 years at the tip of the 20-week study. Additionally, all participants felt an improvement of their facial expression at the tip of the study.

Although these findings seem interesting, the study has some obvious limitations. Of the 27 patients enrolled, 11 dropped out before completing the study. One reason could also be that this system was too time-consuming, at half-hour a day. The overall small size of the study also limits its generalizability to the larger population. In addition, there was no control group, that's, a bunch of participants who didn't perform facial exercises, which might help reduce the chance that these improvements occurred by likelihood.

It can be difficult to attract conclusions concerning the longevity of those findings. Exercises may must be continued to keep up their effects. but, till when? And how often? Which exercises are most useful? Further studies are needed to deal with these questions.

Facial exercises will help, but sunscreen is tried and true.

For those that are still skeptical but wish to try something more evidence-based for youth retention, I even have an easy suggestion: use sunscreen. You might roll your eyes at dermatologists recommending sunscreen, but there's an amazing deal of research showing the sun's role in prematurely aging our skin. You can protect your skin from these damaging effects through the use of a broad-spectrum, SPF 30 or higher sunscreen each day, especially on the face. An analogy I often make is to think about the carpet in front of the window in your own home. What does it appear to be after five or ten years? If the sun can darken an inanimate object to such an extent, imagine what it may do to your skin.

As for facial exercises, the jury remains to be out. But unlike youth-preserving cosmetic procedures that require time and cash to get better, facials are free and almost definitely not harmful. So why not try. Facial exercises If you have got time? If they don't make you look younger, these silly antics will, not less than, make you smile.

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