Beauty, Medical & Health Public Relations
POSTED ON THURSDAY, APRIL 07, 2016 AT 1:16 PM
When the human body is injured, the wound heals gradually over time. Although small injuries will generally return to normal, a larger wound will result in some level of scarring. This occurs because the dermis becomes damaged. Although collagen fibers are created to repair the damage, it is not enough to prevent a scar. Afterward, the affected skin ends up feeling and looking different than the surrounding tissue. Dr. Michael Connor is a West Palm Beach plastic surgeon and founder of Scarology™ a new topical system to eradicate scars. He discusses the truths and myths about scar treatment.
How Can Scars Be Treated?
Scarring from a C-section or a surgery can be treated depending on the extent of the scarring. Often, topical products that contain cocoa butter, shea butter or vitamin E can reduce the appearance of the scar. When this is not possible, dermabrasion, steroid injections, surgery, radiotherapy or laser resurfacing may be used. Since more intense treatments often carry side effects, the first treatment step should always be to try out topical creams or lotions first. Although the process of scar creation and treatment is well known, there are still numerous myths that pervade popular culture about scarring.
Myth: You Have to Have Expensive Laser Treatments
Although laser resurfacing reduces the appearances of scars, it comes with a hefty price tag. Instead of resorting to an over-priced option, individuals can check out one of the many effective over-the-counter products available. Applying basic Vaseline, honey or vitamin E as the wound heals can prevent the incidence of scarring. In addition, topical products for scarring offer noticeable improvements for a small fraction of the cost of laser treatments.
Myth: You Cannot Treat Old Scars
Old scars change color and appearance over time, but they are still structurally similar to new scars. When it comes to alleviating old scars, the treatment options are just as effective as they are against newer scars.
Myth: Tanning Makes Scars Go Away
Going tanning will actually make silver stretch marks and lighter scars more noticeable. Scars do not tan, so this technique only serves to damage the rest of the dermis. If the scar is darker than the surrounding skin, tanning will make it appear to blend in better. Although it might look less noticeable, the scar will still be there.
Myth: Scars From C-Sections Last Forever
A C-section scar does not have to last forever. Even without using a scar treatment, the surgery scar will naturally start to heal on its own. Drinking plenty of water, eating a balanced diet and using the right scar treatment creams can speed the process.
Myth: Eating Healthy and Drinking Water Will Not Effect Stretch Marks and Scarring
In reality, drinking plenty of water helps to hydrate the skin. This allows the elasticity of the skin to increase, which fades scars. Eating a balanced diet is effective because nutrients like vitamin C, protein and zinc help the skin to rejuvenate and produce collagen. As a result, the skin feels smoother, firmer and more elastic.
The History of Scarology ™
Scarology ™ was created in Palm Beach, Florida, by two physicians -- a husband and wife team: Dr. Michael Connor and Dr. Jeanmarie Connor. They have a combined twenty years of medical expertise specializing in plastic and reconstructive surgery in the face and neck as well as pediatrics.
For years, patients asked them for a safe and effective at home scar treatment that could be used on both adults and children that helps fade acne scars, facial scars, burn scars, keloids, wound scars, stretch marks and more. Unfortunately neither could make a recommendation.
As physicians they knew that they needed to have more informed answers for their patients. Over the course of the next few months they extensively researched available scar creams on the market along with consuming as much data on scar treatment. As a result, Scarology™ was born.
POSTED ON THURSDAY, APRIL 07, 2016 AT 1:13 PM
Runner’s Face. Not referring to the aggressive face an athlete makes prior to crossing that finish line. Runner’s face generally occurs in both men and women ages 40+ who exercise to improve their body, and in doing so end up with a skeletal and bony face. When exercising, an athlete burns off fat beneath the layers of his/her skin. The marked loss of fatty tissue results in a loss of volume which leads to a prominent appearance of the bones, accelerated development of skin laxity and deepening of wrinkles. Though you may look like a 20-year-old from the neck down—your face will easily give away your age. If your skin has taken a beating from pounding the pavement, there are ways to chase those wrinkles away. Runners often have wrinkles for reasons other than running itself. Many runners spend long hours outdoors without proper sun protection, so the wrinkles are a result of sun exposure. Runners are also often people who have lost a lot of weight, so the wrinkles are from the skin that was previously filled with fat.
“There are several solutions to rejuvenating gaunt, aged skin which has developed wrinkles or volume loss,” explains Nashville, TN Board Certified Plastic Surgeon Dr. Nicholas Sieveking. Dr. Sieveking is not criticizing women who run; he is simply making them aware of the consequences of pounding the pavement. “Rejuvenating your appearance can include both surgical and non-surgical procedures.” A combination of Botox and injectable fillers such as Restylane, Juvederm Ultra and Radiesse can smooth wrinkles and restore fullness to the face, while further preventing signs of aging. Botox treatments can target lines in the brows or around the mouth, but the result typically lasts about three to four months. Injectable filler treatments to restore volume provide results which last at least a year, and often much longer than that. “In some patients, I’ve seen Botox last the full four months, but I’ve also seen instances where results have only lasted two months – everyone is different,” says Dr. Sieveking. Dr. Sieveking’s experience has proven that Juvederm and Radiesse usually last about twelve to sixteen months. Restylane, which is used mostly for finer lines and wrinkles, not deeper contours, tends to last for six to twelve months. For Runner’s Face, Dr. Sieveking’s recommendation for filling is Juvederm Ultra, which can restore volume to chin, cheeks, and cheekbones that become hollow or thin due to weight loss or age-related facial fat loss. This product reliably lasts up to 18 months. "Fat grafting would be the best option for natural, long-lasting restoration would be the best option for natural, long-lasting restoration of volume loss in this group of patients, but unfortunately in this group of patients there is typically very little to no fat in other areas to take from." Non-invasive treatments like chemical peels, laser skin tightening, photodynamic therapy, portrait plasma regeneration assist in eradicating the lines formed within the skin itself, such as around the mouth, and greatly contribute to producing a more youthful appearance. For true correction of sagging skin, more invasive procedures may be required. Eyes tend to show the first signs of aging, an eyelid lift or brow lift will rejuvenate the eye area and take years off your face.
Dr. Nicholas Sieveking is a board certified plastic surgeon who completed his training in General Surgery and Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery at Stanford University. After Stanford, he received additional fellowship training in Aesthetic Surgery in Rio de Janeiro and São Paulo, Brazil. In addition to his plastic surgery board certification, Dr. Sieveking is also board certified with advanced fellowship training in Anti-Aging and Functional Medicine. This double board certification enables Dr. Sieveking to be the most complete anti-aging surgeon and physician to treat his patients age-related needs, from the inside to the outside. Dr. Sieveking’s comprehensive solo practice includes advanced cosmetic and reconstructive surgeries, state of the art cosmetic laser and skin care services, Bio-identical hormone replacement therapies, medically-supervised weight loss programs, and cutting edge laboratory testing for hormone, amino acid, vitamin and nutrient deficiencies as well as toxin analysis and food and chemical sensitivities testing.
Dr. Sieveking has operated and lectured around the world on topics of face lifts, breast surgery, and cleft lip and palate repair. He has authored a chapter on Rhinoplasty in one of the major training textbooks for plastic surgery residents. In 2012 and 2013, he was voted “Top Plastic Surgeon in Nashville” in two Readers Polls by the citizens of Nashville.
POSTED ON THURSDAY, APRIL 07, 2016 AT 1:12 PM
Menopause can surely be a crazy time in a woman’s life. Not only does it signal the fact that she can no longer procreate, she will most likely suffer from some symptoms; physical, mental or both. As the body is depleted of estrogen, bones lose calcium and become more brittle which can lead to osteoporosis, hormonal fluctuations prompt hot flashes and night sweats and vaginal dryness can become a problem.
And of course, as with anything, there are myths floating around about menopause from when it will hit to the best way to combat its symptoms. Here are some things board certified Nashville, TN plastic surgeon Dr. Nick Sieveking hears from patients. They serve as a rundown to help women navigate their way through a very confusing time.
1. “I just had my last baby 4 years ago! I’m only 40! How can I be perimenopausal? “
While it’s been largely believed that menopause begins at 50, this just isn’t true. The average age to begin menopause tends to be 52, but women can actually begin anywhere from their 30’s to 60’s. Perimenopause, the shift leading up to menopause, can begin anywhere from a few months until a year before actual menopause starts. Symptoms include but aren’t limited to night sweats, trouble sleeping through the night, shorter or irregular periods, crashing fatigue, sore muscles, dizziness, changes in nails and hair. It’s important for women to keep a health log of any changes they notice in their bodies after age 35 and mention them to their doctors during checkups.
2. “I’m not menopausal! I haven’t even had one hot flash.”
Hot flashes and menopause seem to go hand in hand. But they are not always the first sign. While most women experience hot flashes not every woman does so if they aren’t aware of the other emotional or mental changes they may solely focus on the physical changes. The start of menopause can also be signaled by anxiety, depression, fuzzy or unclear thinking with inability to focus, low libido, forgetfulness, short temperedness or irritability. Pay attention to how you are feeling day to day. The more attuned you are to your body the sooner you’ll flag any changes.
3. “Weight gain comes with the territory. Nothing I can do will change that.”
As estrogen is depleted, the body may experience hormonal imbalance. The body often responds by trying to protect itself and a main way of doing that is storing fat. But women don’t have to gain weight without a fight. Some ways to keep a well-maintained weight are:
· Look for high-fiber foods. They can help with constipation, which is often associated with menopause because lack of estrogen can decrease bowel activity.
· Eat plenty of calcium and vitamin D-rich foods, like low-fat dairy products, green leafy vegetables, beans and fish. They help to keep bones strong.
· Give soy a try. Soy contains estrogen. While the jury is still out on whether soy can actually help, it can’t hurt. Add it to your diet for a month or so and see if it has any effect. Drink 1-2 cups of soy milk or eat a cup of edamame on a daily basis.
· Women need 1,000 – 1,500 mg daily of calcium and 800 units of vitamin D daily. It’s very hard to get that much through food alone. Supplements are very helpful.
· In addition to helping battle the bulge, walking, jogging and strength training can help stimulate bone growth and increase bone density. Balancing exercises can help with strength and will make you less likely to fall. Falling during and after menopause increases chances of breaking a bone.
4. “I can handle my liquor besides; red wine is good for me.”
Understand that during the onset of and stages of menopause, the body will not experience alcohol and caffeine as it always has. Alcohol, especially red wine, can trigger hot flashes. It can also diminish calcium absorption and inhibit live enzymes that activate vitamin D. Caffeine increases calcium excretion and reduces how much of it the body can absorb. Both alcohol and caffeine are dehydrating stimulants that can make night sweats even worse.
5. “I yelled at the dog and then I cried about it for an hour.”
Changes in progesterone and estrogen levels may cause mood swings. Things seem to set you off. You may fee rage then sadness. Drops in progesterone may cause increased irritability and moodiness. Also, don’t underestimate the power of what menopause really means. With childrearing days behind them, many women begin to think about the rest of their lives. No doubt, these thoughts can trigger feelings of anxiety and depression.
6. “I got my period when I was 16 so I won’t be menopausal until later.”
An older age at first period doesn’t automatically mean a later start to menopause. Actually, the opposite tends to be true. If a girl gets her period on the later side, she may begin menopause on the earlier side. However, predicting the age a woman will begin menopause is difficult. Pay attention to your body. After age 40 you’ll notice more and more changes and symptoms of menopause.
The process of menopause is a part of a woman’s life. Work closely with your doctor to create a plan that combines healthy foods, exercises, stress management and a commitment to enjoying life to its fullest. There is so much to look forward to. Having a positive outlook is the key to looking your best regardless of age and stage.
POSTED ON THURSDAY, APRIL 07, 2016 AT 1:09 PM
It’s easy to overlook our gut as the source of skin troubles. But if the well-being of our internal organs and energy levels are determined by what we put in our mouths, why shouldn’t the same be true for our skin? Dr. Nicholas Sieveking is a Nashville, TN Stanford-trained, board certified plastic surgeon who also holds a board certification with advanced fellowship training in Anti-Aging and Functional medicine. The Clinic of Ageless Solutions is the most comprehensive anti-aging clinic available to treat almost every aspect of the aging process and health from the inside out.
Dr. Sieveking illustrates what an unhealthy gut can do to your skin:
• It disrupts the flora in the skin as it creates inflammation, affecting the integrity and protective function of the skin. This can lead to a drop in the microbial power of the skin to fight infection and inflammation. Research shows that small intestine bacterial overgrowth (SIBO), a condition involving inappropriate growth of bacteria in the small intestine, is ten times more prevalent in people with acne rosacea, and that a correction of gut flora led to marked clinical improvement in their skin conditions.
• Altered gut flora can activate the release of substance P — a neuropeptide produced in the gut, brain and skin that plays a major role in inflammatory skin conditions like eczema.
• An unhealthy gut can result in maldigestion and the malabsorption of proteins, fats, carbs and vitamins. SIBO can lead to nutritional deficiencies including vitamin B12, as well as vitamins A, D, E and K (fat-soluble vitamins) which are all critical for optimal skin health and overall good health.
• An imbalance of stomach acid can result in the overgrowth of “bad” bacteria in the colon, which can lead to acne. (This was discovered over a century ago!)
• 14% of patients with ulcerative colitis and 24% of patients with Crohn’s disease (both diseases that affects the lining of the digestive tract) have skin manifestations.
Correcting your gut flora and establishing a healthy glow — inside and out — doesn’t need to be complicated. Here are five easy steps you can take to start the healing process:
1. Stop feeding the bad guys.
The bad flora in your gut has a field day with sugar, dairy and processed grains. Starve the little critters by reducing your intake of these foods — your skin will thank you.
2. Start taking a probiotic.
Oral probiotics have been shown to improve skin conditions by reducing inflammation and oxidative stress, as well as strengthening the intestinal barrier. In one study, 80% of participants who received a probiotic experienced improvement in their acne.
3. Eat prebiotic- and fiber-rich foods.
Prebiotics provide food for probiotics and can be just as important as probiotics in maintaining healthy skin and gut. Asparagus, beetroot, pumpkin, flaxseeds and garlic are wonderfully rich prebiotic foods. Fiber helps the process by sweeping away toxins and excess hormones which can wreak havoc on the skin.
4. Eat fermented foods.
Fermented foods can be a wonderful way of introducing good gut flora in a natural way. They also assist with improving digestion and stopping persistent sugar cravings.
5. Up your digestive ability.
Promoting the body’s hydrochloric acid production is critical to improving its ability to break down and absorb food. Splash apple cider vinegar onto your salads and increasing your consumption of bitter foods such as rocket, dandelion, lemon and radicchio will increase your digestive power.
Remember that what you put on and in your body are both important! Get your gut in order and your skin will follow.
POSTED ON THURSDAY, APRIL 07, 2016 AT 1:07 PM
Just as an unhealthy diet can have a negative effect on your skin and health, a healthy diet high in antioxidant-rich foods can help protect your body, even from the sun. Since antioxidants help reduce inflammation and free radicals, loading your diet with them will go a long way against sunburn and skin damage as a result of UV rays. Dr. Nicholas Sieveking is a Nashville, TN board certified plastic surgeons and the director of Ageless Solutions, a comprehensive anti-aging and wellness center.
To be clear, Dr. Sieveking is not saying you should completely replace your daily sunscreen with food, but what you eat can offer additional protection for your skin. So if you’re looking for some ingestible sun protection, add these six sun-friendly foods to your next shopping list.
1. Berries & stone fruits
Strawberries, blueberries and cherries contain high levels of vitamin C, which can reduce free radical damage caused by exposure to UV radiation. Vitamin C also stimulates collagen production, important for skin’s youthful appearance. As a bonus, cherries contain melatonin, which protects skin from UV radiation and repairs sunburn damage.
2. Leafy greens
If it’s green and it’s got leaves, chances are it’s good for sun protection. According to one study, spinach, kale and swiss chard can reduce the risk of squamous cell skin cancer by 50%. Broccoli is also a good choice: it’s full of sulphoraphane, an antioxidant that helps your cells protect themselves against UV radiation.
Fresh herbs like parsley, basil, sage and rosemary are also packed with free radical-fighting, skin-protecting antioxidants. Not sure where to start? Check out our guide to cruciferous vegetables.
3. Red & orange produce
The antioxidant lycopene has been shown to protect the skin against sunburn and is at least twice as effective an antioxidant as betacarotene when it comes to blocking UV light. It also helps rid the body of free radicals. Chow down on tomatoes, papaya, guava, red bell peppers and pink grapefruit. Watermelon is an especially good choice: it contains 40% more lycopene than tomatoes.
Betacarotene is another antioxidant that has natural sunscreen properties: it’s been linked to reduced reactions to sunburns. You can find it in carrots, sweet potatoes, squash, pumpkins, mango and apricots.
Spirulna has been dubbed “the next great superfood,” and for good reason. This micro-algea — along with chlorella — contains the antioxidant astaxanthin, which has been shown to protect the skin and eyes against UV radiation. It also fights free radicals and inflammation to prevent sun damage by preventing UV-induced cell damage.
If micro-algea isn’t exactly your cup of tea, you can find this powerful antioxidant in shrimp and salmon.
As long as it’s dark chocolate you’re eating, you’ll be ingesting plenty of flavanoids, which can improve your skin’s ability protect against sun burns and other UV-induced issues.
Research found that people who ate about one ounce of high-percentage dark chocolate every day for three months could withstand twice the amount of UVB rays before their skin started to turn red, compared to those who didn’t.
6. Green & black tea
The myriad health benefits of tea are well-known, but it’s nice to know that the cups you’re drinking can also help protect against sun damage. Green and black teas are packed with polyphenols that can help stop cancer development by limiting the blood supply to the cancerous area.
Green tea can even help prevent non-melanoma skin cancer by enhancing DNA repair.