A-Z of Non-surgical Treatments

24 Feb A-Z of Non-surgical Treatments

Plastic Surgeon Dr James Southwell-Keely is often asked what he believes are the best non-surgical ways to help prevent and combat ageing. So here are his favorites from A to Z.


A – Vitamin A – stimulates exfoliation, repairs DNA damage in epidermal cells, stimulates dermal collagen production and also helps to tighten skin, reduce fine lines and open pores. Ideal in supplements and creams in its various forms but not if you are pregnant as high levels of vitamin A can cause birth defects.

B – The B-group vitamins are crucial for the body’s energy pathways and help combat stress.

C – Vitamin C – vital antioxidant, crucial to the formation of collagen which supports the skin’s structure and is the most widespread protein in the body. Also helpful if ingested or applied topically.

D – Dermastamp – a form of collagen induction therapy using microscopic needles to gently traumatise the skin’s collagen and encourage it to produce more collagen naturally. This effectively refreshes the skin, softens wrinkles and fades scars after 4 to 6 treatments. I am a big fan of this treatment and have seen great results on my patients.

E – Vitamin E – has great synergistic antioxidant properties similar to vitamin C.

F – Fraxel – is a safe, effective and reproducible form of non-ablative, fractionated laser resurfacing.  Excellent to improve fine lines and patchy skin pigmentation which is extremely aging.

G – Ginseng – great supplementary medical treatment with a multitude of benefits. It alleviates the degeneration of the blood system while increasing circulation vital for healthy skin.

H – Hydroxyl acids – iron out patchy pigmentation and fine wrinkles.

I – IPL – intense pulsed light therapy for hair removal and treating vascular conditions such as a ruddy complexion or fine capillaries on the face.

J – Juvederm – hyaluronic acid dermal filler, comes in many different forms and is instantly reversible with an injection of Hyalse. Works wonders on areas such as deep lines around the mouth or areas that need a little plumping to regain a more youthful appearance such as the cheeks or lips.

K – Kale – one of the latest popular superfoods, full of vitamin C, vitamin K and betacarotene, also tastes delicious in juices and salads.

L – Light- while too much is the most aging enemy of your skin, a little regular sunlight is still ideal to help the body make vitamin D naturally – vital for youthful, strong bones. Try to take in a little sunlight every day but avoid exposure in the middle of the day and always wear a sunscreen. Remember aging sunspots are caused by excess exposure to the sun, not to mention skin cancers and melanoma.

M – Melatonin – helps your body with its day/night cycle and encourages quality sleep –essential for looking good.

N – Neurotoxins – Botox is the poster-boy of neurotoxins, safe and effective with more than 30 years of clinical safety data. Used to paralyse the muscles responsible for creating those ageing lines such as frown lines and crows feet.

O – Oxidation – is what you want to avoid. It’s the chemical reaction within our cells that is responsible for the aging process, similar to the rusting of steel.  Fight oxidization by ingesting adequate anti-oxidant rich foods, fresh juices and supplements.

P – Peptides – are the building blocks for proteins – most of our body is made up of protein so peptide serums help keep the skin smooth and soft.

Q – Q-switched laser for tattoo removal does so without damaging the surrounding skin the way the original laser removal methods did. Tattoos fade and also change if your weight fluctuates and could look very aging so best these are removed.

R – Restylane – another hyaluronic acid dermal filler useful for correcting deep wrinkles.

S – Smoking. Quit immediately as it will definitely prematurely age your skin and body. It is advisable to take extra vitamin C if you are a smoker but better to give up as smoking damages cells and is extremely aging – especially long term.)

T – Topical treatments are important to protect the skin. Sunscreen will be one of your best friends in the anti-aging arena along with serums and moisturisers containing the above-mentioned nutrients and antioxidants. Those listed that are applied to the skin, rather than being ingested such as peptides.

U- UV light – is the wavelength of light just outside the visible spectrum, that is

responsible for photo-aging of the skin and skin cancer formation so again protect against overexposure at all times.

V – Vitality – align your mind-body-soul axis and embrace life

W – Water makes up to 60-70per cent of our bodies, so keep replenishing every day.

X – Xanthine oxidase is a naturally-occurring enzyme in our bodies responsible for producing reactive oxygen compounds.  Small amounts of the reactive oxygen compounds are important in fighting infections, but large amounts damage our cells.

Y – Yoga is great for core strength and centering your inner self.

Z – Zen find a little zen moment at least once a day to help maintain your work/life balance as a happy demeanor makes for a more youthful face, mind and body.