Skin, Hair and Nails: How Are They Related to Hormone Health in Seniors?

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Hormones often act as catalysts to get changes in your body rolling. In utero, your hormones trigger growth and the development of your sexual characteristics. As you grow, hormones act on your genetic material to trigger the length of your bones. In adolescence, hormones ramp up the amazing changes created by puberty.

How Do Hormones Work?

Once you reach your full height and sexual development, hormones help you maintain. In women, three primary hormones related to fertility are 

  • estrogen 
  • progesterone
  • testosterone

Low levels of testosterone in women can lower estrogen production. Progesterone levels are critical in early pregnancy. Estrogen is critical to breast development in girls and to maintaining healthy uterine and vaginal tissues. The classic female menopause symptoms of hot flashes are caused by lower levels of estrogen production.

Among men, testosterone is the most commonly known hormone. Testosterone is tied to fertility and sex drive. It’s also connected to 

  • maintaining muscle mass
  • libido
  • energy
  • mental well-being

Low levels of testosterone can lead to depression and a loss of bone density.

Hormones in Aging People: Get Your Blood Tested

If you notice a sudden loss of muscle mass or energy, getting a blood test is critical. A sudden loss of hormonal production can be an indication of problems with your pituitary gland. This pea-sized gland is critical to good health. It impacts your growth hormone production, your thyroid and your ability to turn food into fuel.

Should your pituitary gland be functioning improperly, you may need additional hormonal therapies, from HGH therapy to thyroid medications, until your pituitary gland function can be brought back into normal ranges. Before considering any HRT, consult with your endocrinologist and dive deeper into facts and real results, like HGH before and after patients’ pictures.

Hormones in Seniors and Hair

One of the most common symptoms of low testosterone in women and men is a loss of body hair. If you have pattern baldness in your background, fighting hair loss on your head may require you to get implants or to consider a hairline surgery. Hairline surgeries pull the hairline forward and tighten the skin around the perimeter of the face.

Hair implants, on the other hand, simply add hair follicles to areas of thinning or baldness. Depending on the extent of your hair loss, you may need one or more types of hair restoration treatments. In addition to these two options, there are also non-surgical techniques such as PRP (Platelet Rich Plasma) injections and medications like Minoxidil. Ultimately, the best treatment for you will depend on your individual needs and goals.

Gray hair is another common factor as we age. Graying hair is an indicator that your hair is still growing, it just has less pigment. Genetics have a big impact on the age your hair starts to gray. Proper stress management can also help, as can a B12 supplement. Be aware that gray hair will have a different texture than your original hair color. You may need to change your shampoo and cut.

Hormones in Seniors and Nails

Your fingernails are made up of keratin. As you age, your body may produce less so you nails will become brittle. You may also notice a yellowing of your nails. Ridges are not uncommon, but it is possible to develop skin cancer under your nails. If you notice dark ridges appearing at the base of your nails, talk to your doctor.

Hormones in Seniors and Skin

Aging skin contains lower levels of collagen. Older skin is is less able to stand firm above the muscles on your face. If you see ridges or grooves in your forehead, the skin is simply clinging closer to those muscles than previously. This is why Botox works on these wrinkles; the muscles relax and the grooves are flattened out.

Your skincare history will show up on your facial skin as you age. If you have spent a lot of time in the sun, your top layer of skin will show that damage. If you have smoked, you will probably have a lot of wrinkling around the mouth. The puckering draw of smoking builds up the muscles and the toxins from cigarettes damage the skin, so the skin damage becomes more obvious quickly.

Older skin is also thinner. Under-eye circles will darken up more quickly when you’re tired or stressed. Additionally, any fat pouches above or below the eyes will droop even further and increase the appearance of aging. If you have long had chubby cheeks, those cheeks may turn into jowls over time.

Ways to Keep Your Skin Young and Lifted With Age

Both men and women can protect their aging skin by reviewing the products they use on their skin. If you are noticing increased skin irritation after a hot shower, you may need a milder soap and a cooler water temperature.

Men who shave, particularly with an electric razor, have a regular exfoliating routine in place. Women who wear moisturizer and base have probably long been in the habit of applying a facial sunblock. As you age, it’s time to pay more attention to these factors to protect the tissue health you still have.

Do keep an eye out for 

  • bumps
  • discoloration
  • mole changes

Skin cancer risk goes up as we age. Consistently check your skin for changes and discuss your concerns with your physician.

Another simple way to protect aging skin is to focus on your food. Citrus fruits, berries, complex carbs, and lean protein can all protect your skin health. Finally, lots of pure water can promote healthy skin while protecting the health of your internal organs as well.

Managing Your Hormones as a Senior

Hormones act on the body as a catalyst for change. They also maintain us in our young adulthood. As hormone production changes over time, your skin, hair and nails will change. If you notice large changes in any aspect of your skin, hair and nails, it could be an indication of serious health challenges and require some bloodwork.

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