Did you know some skin problems can be largely due to the environment?Here are three of the most prominent environmental triggers affecting our skin today.
There are two main factors in pollution.
• Particle matter such as black soot, smog and dust.
• Gasses like ozone, nitrogen dioxide, sulfur dioxide, and carbon monoxide.
Constant exposure to these irritants in the air not only hinder the way the skin builds and repairs itself, but it can also cause dryness, premature aging, dull skin, clogged pores, skin irritation, inflammation, and allergies.
Too much sun exposure is one of the leading causes of wrinkles and premature aging. The sun's ultraviolet light damages the fibers in the skin called elastin and breaks down these fibers. This causes the skin to sag, stretch, and lose elasticity. Also, the skin is more likely to bruise and tear, taking the skin longer to heal. As most of us know, excessive sun exposure can also result in skin cancer, one of the more serious effects of sun damage. Other effects include age spots, sunburn and freckling.
An area's climate can really affect the skin, causing everything from acne breakouts to itchy dry patches. Extreme hot and cold weather can also intensify existing skin conditions and even cause new ones.
Cold temperatures usually mean low humidity, which dries out your skin. This can cause your skin to be rough, red, tightened, cracked or even peeled. Some skin conditions, such as eczema, can flare up during dry weather as well.
In warmer weather, your skin is more prone to breakouts because of sweat. The heat can also cause other skin problems such as heat rashes.
HOW YOU CAN PROTECT YOUR SKIN FROM THE ENVIRONMENT
We can’t always avoid the effects of the weather and the environment, but we can try and protect ourselves.
• Cleanse your face every night to rid the toxins from your day, as well as any makeup.
• Supplement your diet with foods rich in vitamin D and E, such as fish, tofu, milk, spinach and blueberries. These vitamins are known to improve your skin tone and add moisture. Also, eat foods that have minerals and fatty oils which can give your skin a healthy texture. Two great sources are dairy products and some nuts like almonds.
• Always wear sunscreen to help you avoid damage from the sun.
• Maintain the temperature at work and home, so it's not too cold or too warm. Use a humidifier in the winter and always wear protective clothing when you go outside.
• Avoid taking long, hot showers, and apply a moisturizer daily.
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Happy skin is here to stay!