Four Major Aging Changes in Your Face

By: Dr. Sean Delaney


Aging is an inevitable and natural part of life, and as we grow older, our faces undergo a series of transformations. These changes, ranging from alterations in the skin to shifts in facial structure, can significantly impact our appearance. In this post, we'll delve into the insights shared by Dr. Sean Delaney, a facial plast ic surgeon from Houston, Texas, as he discusses the four major types of aging changes observed in the face.

1. Changes in Skin:

As time passes, our skin experiences a reduction in collagen and elasticity, leading to the formation of fine lines, wrinkles, and a loss of smoothness. Environmental factors, such as exposure to sunlight and UV rays, can contribute to the development of brown spots and uneven pigmentation.

2. Loss of Facial Fat:

As we age, there's a gradual reduction in facial fat, reshaping the youthful contours we once enjoyed. This process can be likened to a grape shriveling up and transforming into a raisin. With the diminishing facial fat, more of the underlying skeleton becomes apparent, imparting an older appearance. The deflation of tissue resulting from fat loss further contributes to sagging, particularly noticeable in the cheeks and jawline.

3. Reduction in Skull Size:

Over time, our skulls shrink, leading to enlargement of the eye sockets. This bone loss results in a more sunken appearance of the eyes and contributes to the aging process. Additionally, the maxilla and mandible, which comprise the jaw, shrink and move backward, reducing foundational support for overlying soft tissues of the face.

4. Soft Tissue Laxity and Descent:

The loosening and downward movement of soft tissues mark the culmination of the initial three aging processes. As the skin thins and loses elasticity, combined with the reduction in facial volume and the shrinking of the underlying skeleton, it results in the sagging and drooping of facial tissues. This ultimate stage is commonly what comes to mind when we refer to facial aging.

Taking a Comprehensive Approach:

In the past, surgical methods primarily centered around lifting and removing tissue, neglecting other crucial aspects. For a more thorough facial rejuvenation, it's essential to adopt a multi-faceted strategy, addressing all facets of aging rather than concentrating solely on lifting. A holistic approach involves treatments that enhance skin health, replenish facial volume, and restore the structural support provided by our facial skeleton.

While aging is a natural process, there are numerous ways to embrace and care for our faces. Our board-certified facial plastic surgeons, Dr. Delaney and Dr. Kridel, are dedicated to educating our patients and offering valuable insights for those looking to navigate the aging process with grace and knowledge. Whether one decides to age gracefully or considers surgical enhancements, the essential factor is feeling confident and comfortable in our own skin.

* All information subject to change. Images may contain models. Individual results are not guaranteed and may vary.