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Dr. Donnica's Top Ten Tips for Healthy Skin

Did you know that the average adult skin weighs around 7lb (3.2 kg) and has approximately 300 million skin cells?!! Your skin is the largest organ in your body.  Having healthy looking skin is not only a cosmetic concern:  when skin looks healthy, it's generally because it IS healthy! 

  1. The most important thing you can do to protect your skin is to stop smoking or never to start. Smoking is terrible for many organs, but also can cause premature aging and yellowing of the skin.  The tobacco smoke released into the air dries out your skin, while the smoke you inhale constricts blood vessels, and therefore, the amount of blood and flowing to the skin, robbing your skin of essential nutrients.

  2. Keep well hydrated.  Drinking 8 to 10 glasses of water per day will help keep your skin moist and supple, thus less likely to wrinkle.

  3. Protect your skin from the harmful effects of sun exposure:  avoid being out during peak sun times, wear a hat, wear sunglasses, and be generous with moisturizers with an SPF of 15 or higher on exposed areas.  Wind and cold can also be particularly harsh to exposed areas, especially the lips. While Chap stick™ and other lip protection lubricants with an SPF ingredient are helpful, chapped lips can also indicate dehydration.

  4. Your outside reflects what's inside: eat a healthy, well balanced diet with plenty of fruits and vegetables.

  5. Be sure to remove your make-up thoroughly before bedtime. Clean skin is healthy skin. However: don't overdo it! Excessive washing depletes the surface oils in the outer layers of the skin and may provoke dermatitis or worsen dry skin.

  6. Moisturize, moisturize, moisturize!  Applying moisturizer after a warm shower is particularly beneficial, but a good rule of thumb is to moisturize your face after each cleansing (ideally, morning and night).

  7. Sleep deprivation wreaks havoc on your body in general, but particularly on your face.  The best way to get rid of those tired looking bags under your eyes may be to get a better-and longer-night's sleep on a regular basis.

  8. Exercise is also good for your whole body, but particularly for your skin.  Exercise can help increase skin tone and maintain elasticity.  Exercise can also increase the blood flow to your skin and give it a healthy glow.

  9. Vitamins and minerals are important for most organs and the skin is no exception.  As a minimum, consider taking a daily multivitamin with antioxidants.

  10. If you have skin problems-such as itching, dryness, suspicious moles or rashes-consult your physician.  As with most medical problems, these are best discovered and treated sooner rather than later. 

Created: 1/9/2004  -  Donnica Moore, M.D.

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