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Skin Conditions - Anti-aging, Roscea Treatment, Acne Care, Hyperpigmentation

Skin ConditionsIntroduction

The following tabs cover various conditions and will give you a better understanding of the complexities of the skin. And no matter what skin condition you have, it is important to remind you to wear a broad-spectrum sunscreen every day to protect your skin. Without the dedicated use of a sunscreen, even the most advanced therapies will not work to their fullest capacity.

Acne

Acne is one of the most common skin disorders to affect most people at some point in life. A skin disease of the hair follicle and sebaceous -- or oil -- gland, acne appears to be a genetic disease caused by the abnormal buildup of dead skin cells in the area known as the follicular wall, the presence of bacteria and the production of sebum that results in skin inflammation.

It can often be dismissed as a minor affliction that requires no treatment and, believing it to be a phase, many people avoid seeking medical advice. Unfortunately, permanent scarring of the skin can result. And because the onset of acne coincides with puberty, it can be especially troubling to adolescents, affecting their self-image, emotional stability -- and their ability to enjoy life.

While it's true that adolescents are more frequently affected by acne than adults, adults comprise the majority of office visits to physicians.

Most intense on the face, chest, back and upper area of the outer arms -- where sebaceous glands are largest and most numerous -- Acne may be little, with only a few eruptions, or it may show up in highly inflammable and diffusely scarring forms.

Acne has no single cause and, according to experts, can be caused by:
hyperkeratosis (buildup of dead skin cells)
oil secretion
bacteria accumulation
androgenic hormones

Other factors, such as cosmetics with comedogenic -- or pore -- clogging -- ingredients, hormone therapies and selected chemicals may aggravate the condition. Additionally, people prone to acne have an abnormally high level of dead cells and pores that easily become clogged.

After in-depth studies, scientists have established that the material extracted from these follicles contains bacteria thought to be involved in the development of acne.

In its more complex forms, acne requires medical treatment, usually with topical or systemic antibiotics and therapies such as benzoyl peroxide or salicylic acid. Glycolic acid is also an excellent treatment that can be used in conjunction with other therapies to help improve some acne conditions because it reduces the buildup of dead skin cells. It also acts as an effective cleansing agent for problem-prone skin. Maintaining the clarity of the follicle helps prevent further follicular blockage.

Hyperpigmentation

Simply put, hyperpigmentation modifies the coloring of the skin because of an excess of pigment known as hyperpigmentation or, conversely, a lack of pigmentation known as hypopigmentation.

These discolorations do not disappear through washing or cleansing -- and they usually remain for a long time, and sometimes for a lifetime.

Due to excessive sun exposure, sun damage and hormonal imbalance or skin inflammation from trauma, hyperpigmentation may be expressed as dark spots on the face, neck, torso and arms because of an uneven accumulation of pigment in the upper layers of the skin -- the epidermis.

Cells called melanocyte are responsible for skin pigmentation in humans. Located in the lower level of the epidermis, these cells produce a complex brown-black color substance called melanin that travels to the upper skin layers, giving the skin its color.

The darker the overall skin color, the greater the amount of melanin within the skin. Dark-skinned people produce melanin more easily than people with lighter skin, allowing them to tan quickly with minimal burning. People with fair complexions usually produce less melanin, and often burn or get freckles.

Sunlight stimulates melanin production. This increased production results in a greater melanin concentration on the skin surface and, at the same time, a darkening of the exposed areas. The most common varieties of hyperpigmentation include:

freckles: small brown spots on sun-exposed areas
age spots: small, evenly pigmented, light to dark brown spots on sun-exposed or nonsun-exposed areas
melasma (also know as a pregnancy mask): irregular patches of light to dark areas usually seen on the face
postinflammatory hyperpigmentation: random dark spots in areas of previous inflammation, such as acne

Factors such as race, genetic influence, hormonal imbalances, UV light exposure and even surface skin irritation -- such as friction, scratching, rubbing or acne injury -- are responsible for altering melanin production and changes in skin color.

Melasma appears in patches, and is believed to result from hormonal changes that often occur during pregnancy or estrogen therapy. These hormonal changes cause pigment-producing cells to increase melanin production in an uneven pattern, resulting in color-alteration patches that can cover a wider area (sometimes the entire cheek, forehead or upper lip).

When hyperpigmentation is the result of melanin accumulation on the skin surface, glycolic acid-based products help to lighten darkened areas because of exfoliation properties that help to eliminate accumulated melanin. In this case, the use of a skin-lightening lotion, while not essential, will accelerate the lightening process.

For melasma, a skin-lightening lotion based on a therapeutic bleaching agent, such as hydroquinone, should be used in conjunction with glycolic acid such as M.D. Formulations Skin Bleaching Gel.

Aging

Skin is affected by two types of aging -- intrinsic aging and extrinsic aging.

Intrinsic aging is inevitable. Genetic and chronological in nature, it is caused by the normal aging process. Visible signs include:

dry skin
wrinkles
loss of skin elasticity
irregular skin color

Extrinsic aging, which is environmental, is much more dramatic. Caused almost exclusively by sun and environmental exposure, it is the primary factor behind the visible signs of aging skin such as dryness, sun damage and deep wrinkling. Additionally, nearly 90% of all aging skin is sun-induced, while 80% of sun-related skin damage is due to sun exposure before the age of 18.

The most significant changes in sun-damaged skin are:

increased roughness
increased hyperpigmentation
greater loss of elasticity
greater wrinkling
increased risk of skin cancer

Treatment Prevention
The first step in any program designed to treat sun-damaged skin is to stop ongoing sun damage by avoiding sun exposure. It is also important to understand the different types of UV radiation emitted by sunlight. They are based on wavelength, and are commonly referred to as UVA, UVB and UVC rays.

Once believed to be safe, UVA rays penetrate into the dermis and are responsible for the depletion of your skin's collagen and elastin levels. Eventually, the dermis becomes damaged because collagen and elastin have been depleted, forming deep wrinkles in your skin. They are intense all year round and in all weather conditions with low levels in fluorescent lights. UVA rays are penetrable through glass and able to refract off of metallic and reflective surfaces such as pavement, snow, sand and water.

UVB rays represent the "tanning" rays once thought to be the primary source of sun damage. They affect the superficial epidermal skin directly associated with sunburn and skin cancer, and are responsible for epidermal damage such as fine, dry lines, reduced softness and smoothness of your skin's texture and pigmentary changes.

UVC radiation does not penetrate the Earth's atmosphere and therefore has little effect on your skin.

Sun Protection
In this day and age, to protect yourself against the sun is nearly impossible. That's why we must settle for the next option: Sun protection. The concept of sun protection encompasses sun-protective clothing as well as sunscreens. The best shield against extrinsic aging caused by the sun is by wearing sunscreen every day, and by re-applying it frequently throughout the day during long exposures. Because UV damage is cumulative, the prevention of even small amounts of sun damage over a long period of time can have a profound impact on the total amount of UV-induced damage.

Physical Sunscreens
Sunscreen formulations based on physical sunscreens incorporate titanium dioxide or zinc oxide. They scatter and reflect UV light, provide very broad-spectrum coverage and are less irritating to sensitive skin types than the more traditional chemical sunscreens.

Synthetic Sunscreens
Synthetic sunscreens rely on the absorption of UV light or sunlight. Some examples of popular sunscreen chemicals are octyl methoxycinnamate, octyl salicylate, para-aminobenzoic acid (PABA) and oxybenzone. These types of sunscreens generally contain several active chemical agents in an effort to provide broad-spectrum protection.

Glycolic Acid
Glycolic acid is a dramatically effective tool for reducing the visible signs of sun-damaged and aged skin because of its ability to reduce the buildup of dead skin cells -- revealing smoother, younger-looking skin.

With regular applications of glycolic acid products, the fine dry lines will improve visibly and dramatically. The tone and texture of your skin will become softer and smoother; and your skin will radiate with a healthier, more youthful glow.

Caution: It is recommended that sun avoidance or protection such as protective clothing or M.D. Formulations' Total Daily Protector SPF 15, Total Protector SPF 30 or SPF 20 Sun Protector, be used in conjunction with glycolic acid-based products to avoid any potential increase in sun sensitivity.


Rosacea

Critical Care Starter Kit

Suitable for Skin with Rosacea and Post-procedure Skin*
A Six-Week Clinical Evaluation:
MD Formulations®
Rosacea Management Facials
and Critical Care Home Care Regimen

home care regimen instructions:
step 1: Cleanse skin with Facial Cleanser Sensitive Skin Formula. (AM + PM)
step 2: Apply Facial Lotion Sensitive Skin Formula onto dry skin after
cleansing. (AM only) step 3: Apply Critical Care Skin Repair Complex. (AM + PM) **
step 4: Apply Total Protector 30, SPF 30 (AM only)
*Caution: for 24-48 hours post-procedure, skip Steps 1 & 2, unless otherwise instructed by a trained skin care professional. This home care regimen is not intended for post-laser or post-surgery skin. Call 1.800.MDFORMULA (633-6768) for more information.
**For very dry post-procedure skin, we recommend applying Critical Care Shielding Creme over Critical Care Skin Repair Complex.

the study:
Twenty-one women, between the ages of 18 and 65, with moderate to severe Rosacea completed the study. Each subject received an Alpha/Beta Rosacea Management Facial once a week for a total of six weeks. Additionally, each subject followed the home care regimen daily, using Facial Cleanser Sensitive Skin Formula, Facial Lotion Sensitive Skin Formula, Critical Care Skin Repair Complex, and Total Protector 30 SPF 30. Evaluations were taken by expert graders at baseline and after six weeks for overall global improvement and specific reduction in redness (Rosacea). Standard 35-mm photographs were also taken of the face at baseline and after six weeks post product applications.

the conclusion:
Based on the data obtained from this study, the combination of the MD Formulations Alpha/Beta Rosacea Management Facials with the Critical Care Home Care Regimen for Skin with Rosacea, can significantly improve the overall condition of subjects with moderate to severe Rosacea.

the results:
29% reduction in redness (Rosacea)
31% improvement in the overall appearance of facial skin. (smoothness, elasticity, and skin texture)





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