How Smoking Affects the Appearance

Smoking young woman

In 2020, 14.7% of adults in Florida smoked. While this is lower than the national rate of 15.5%, it’s still a significant portion of the population. Many people know that smoking increases the risk of various chronic conditions, like stroke, cancer, and heart disease. However, you may not realize the full extent of smoking’s impact on your appearance. 

Read on to learn more about how smoking can affect your appearance in Tampa Bay.

The Effect of Smoking on Your Skin

Smoking negatively impacts skin health and contributes to premature skin aging. Here’s how:

  • Reduced blood circulation: Nicotine is a vasoconstrictor, meaning it restricts the blood vessels. This limits blood flow throughout the body, which can reduce the delivery of oxygen and nutrients to the skin. 
  • Collagen damage: Smoking can lead to the development of metalloproteinase (MMPs), which is an enzyme that damages collagen proteins. This can contribute to premature skin aging, like wrinkles and sagging skin. 
  • Free radical damage: Cigarette smoke increases free radical activity in the body. Free radicals lead to oxidative stress, which can damage skin cells and trigger premature skin aging. 
  • Increased pigmentation: Smoking increases melanin in the skin, which can contribute to age spots and discoloration. 
  • Reduced skin healing: Smoking slows wound healing, meaning it may take longer for the skin to recover from even small cuts and scrapes. 

Clinical research has confirmed that cigarette smoking contributes to many signs of premature skin aging, including wrinkles, sagging, and pigmentation. For our clients looking to diminish signs of aging in Tampa Bay, quitting smoking is one of our top recommendations. 

Other Ways Smoking Impacts Your Appearance

Smoking doesn’t just affect the skin – it can also lead to discolored teeth, hair loss, and even yellowed fingernails. With these effects in mind, quitting smoking may be the best investment in your appearance that you ever make. 

If you’re struggling with signs of skin aging in Tampa, we’re here to help. Schedule an appointment with Dr. Mahootchi today for a personalized treatment plan.