New Delhi: Ageing of skin comprises of intrinsic and extrinsic factors. The intrinsic factors are genetic. The extrinsic factors include sun exposure, pollution, unhealthy diet, inadequate sleep, stress, lack of exercise, poor lifestyle, pollution and imbalance of hormones. Skin loses its firmness and elasticity due to these factors.
Cosmetic Dermatologists adopt various techniques to turn back the clock and make one look youthful. While a popular approach employs the technique of relaxing wrinkle causing muscles, other procedures work to lend more hydration to thinning skin or volume to sunken areas on the face. Effectively, they serve to address the overt signs of ageing. However, researchers and experts have continued to explore ways that can address more than just the symptoms of ageing and boost skin's regeneration ability at the root.
The Bio Aesthetic Points (BAP) technique, pioneered by dermo-aesthetic major IBSA Derma, is one of the latest advancements in this direction, says Celebrity Cosmetic Dermatologist Dr. Jaishree Sharad. Dr Sharad is the only Indian to be Board of Director of the International Society of Dermatologic Surgery and aesthetic dermatology.
However, before coming to this technique we need to understand the key role Hyaluronic acid plays in keeping skin youthful and how delivering it at strategic points into the multiple layers of the dermis achieves remarkable anti-ageing effects.
Hyaluronic acid: the potent anti-ageing weapon
Hyaluronic Acid (HA) is a substance found naturally in the skin. With its ability to retain water and its elasticity, HA plays a crucial role in maintaining hydration and volume of skin tissues and ensure healthy existence of other structural proteins such as collagen and elastin. Age related depletion or degradation of skin's natural HA reserves are a major reason for the appearance of wrinkles and fine lines on the skin, Dr Sharad, who has been practising in Mumbai for the past 20 years, points out.
"With ageing, the ratio between different collagen types changes. Along with it, the skin's turnover rate also diminishes, resulting in lacklustre appearance and signs of ageing. The depletion of HA also results in physiological alterations of keratinocytes and fibroblasts -- two crucial cell types that play a pivotal role on skin regeneration. A healthy interplay between fibroblasts and keratinocytes enables the process of healing and regeneration of the epidermal barrier layer of the skin."
Hyaluronic acid therefore plays a central role in ensuring a healthy composition of skin components as well as a healthy skin regeneration response. This knowledge has led to HA becoming a key element of skincare and anti-ageing regimes in recent years. From serums to topical skin creams to fillers and injectables, HA is today used in a multitude of skincare products. Its ability to induce lubrication and healthy inflammatory response also makes HA useful for wound healing and maintaining joint health.
BAP technique for skin bio-remodelling
Dr Sharad, who authored the book 'Bestseller Skin Rules', says: "The technique called Bio Aesthetic Points (BAP) is specifically designed for Profhilo at the IBSA laboratories by a team of experts. While most HA-based dermal fillers use the Hyaluronic Acid to give hydration, volume to the skin and fill up lines and folds, IBSA Derma has taken its use a step ahead with its brand Profhilo that uses a skin bio-remodelling approach through the BAP technique."
The Bio Aesthetic Points (BAP) technique identifies 5 strategic points on facial skin to deliver intradermal injections of HA for best anti-ageing results. These 5 injection points are anatomically receptive areas of the face with an absence of large vessels and nerve branches, therefore, minimizing the risks of any adverse effect and maximizing the diffusion of the product in the cheeks, she points out. "Profhilo can also be injected in the neck strategically to tighten the skin in the neck region. The BAP protocol includes two treatments one month apart."
Traditional bio stimulation shows several limitations including the need for many injections, greater patient discomfort, increased possibility of bruising, protocol requiring many treatment sessions, and greater time commitment for the patient. However, compared to this, the new BAP technique using new generation hyaluronic acid complexes achieves several advantages: only 5 injection sites per side of the face, reduced pain (slow injection), less chance of bruising and hematoma, fewer treatment sessions and better patient compliance, Dr Sharad says.
The skin bio-remodelling procedure uses a highly pure hyaluronic acid without any cross linking, making it closest to the substance found in nature. The result is also more natural and effective with anti-ageing action unleashed at the source of ageing, rather than just on the surface, she adds.
Can it be done in people with hypertension, diabetes, hypothyroidism, liver disorders etc? Yes, answers the expert. "It is not harmful and the only side effect may be an occasional bruise in those on blood thinners and the bruise lasts for about a week."