How Smoking Affects Your Appearance

By dsherris on February 13, 2020


Breaking a cigarette in halfWe all know that smoking is bad for you, but you may be surprised by how many aspects of your wellness it affects. In addition to increasing your risk for lung disease and certain kinds of cancers, smoking can cause major changes to your appearance, including signs of premature aging.

In his years as a facial plastic surgeon in Buffalo, NY, Dr. David A. Sherris has treated cosmetic flaws caused by smoking and the use of tobacco products. As it turns out, smoking affects all aspects of your looks, even features you may not have expected.

Why Smoking Affects Your Looks

The toxins in cigarette smoke affect more than just your mouth, throat, and lungs. The harmful substances in a cigarette get into your bloodstream and can cause serious damage to the collagen and elastin in your skin. As these essential components for healthy skin break down, the wear will show on your face.

Deepening Lines and Wrinkles

The breakdown of collagen and elastin is linked to deepening lines and wrinkles all over your face. This includes dynamic wrinkles (wrinkles that appear when making facial expression) and static wrinkles (wrinkles that are visible when your face is at rest).

Age Spots and Uneven Skin Tone

You may notice dark spots and uneven pigmentation among people who have smoked for a long time. This is a common negative effect that smoking has on your skin.

Lines Around the Lips and Mouth

There’s a reason those vertical lines around the lips are called smoker’s lines. These tend to be more pronounced for people whop have smoked for many years.

Sagging Skin

In addition to wrinkles, the loss of healthy collagen and elastin will cause your skin to droop and sag. This isn’t limited to the jowls and neckline. Other parts of your body can also sag from the tissue damage you experience.

Discoloration of the Fingers

Now let’s consider some parts of the body that we don’t treat at our Buffalo facial plastic surgery center. These are still important aesthetic problems caused by smoking that we need to address.

Holding cigarettes over many years will turn the skin of your fingers yellow. The nicotine stains can be extremely pronounced and off-putting.

Yellow Teeth

The nicotine doesn’t just affect your skin. Smokers tend to have yellow, dingy, extremely stained teeth. The stains tend to be worse the longer a person has smoked.

Unhealthy Gums

Bad teeth aren’t the only issue for smokers. Smoking also increased a person’s risk for gum disease, which negatively impacts dental health and the appearance of your smile.

Changes to Your Hair

The toxins in cigarettes can also lead to thinner and more brittle hair. This is because of the damage done to the hair follicles and the hair itself.

It’s a Good Idea to Kick the Habit for Good

If you want to look your best for as long as possible, it’s imperative that you quit smoking. We can help connect you with resources that make quitting possible, and can also perform various cosmetic procedures that address the damage done by smoking.

Contact the Clinic of Facial Plastic Surgery

For more information about treating lines, wrinkles, and other signs of advanced age, be sure to contact a facial plastic surgeon and skin care expert. You can schedule a consultation at our Buffalo cosmetic surgery practice by phone at (716) 884-5102.

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