Wayne Adult Community Center
Feature article from the November, 2004 Cyberspace News


What Causes Bags Under The Eyes


  One morning my mother-in-law looked in the mirror and, inexplicably, there were bags under her eyes.

She was mystified!  She’d been getting plenty of rest and was sleeping well.  So why the bags?

Three things contribute to dark rings under the eyes:

Φ      an inherited tendency to have dark circles under one’s eyes

Φ      the natural aging process

Φ      lack of adequate sleep


   There’s not much you can do about the first contributor.  Some people are genetically predisposed to having circles under their eyes.

   There’s not much you can do about the aging process, either.   As we grow older, the skin gets thinner due to a breakdown of the “scaffolding” formed by collagen fibers and a weakening of the elastic fibers that keep the skin taut.  This thinning of the skin is especially noticeable in areas where the skin is stretched over bony structures that don’t have thick layers of fat and other tissues beneath.  There isn’t room for fatty layers around the eye sockets because this would interfere with our ability to move our eyes and see.  So the skin around the eye sockets gets thinner as we age, allowing the blood vessels and dark shadows of bone to show through.  

   Again, although this process is genetically controlled, there are factors which contribute to the condition of our skin.  One is how much exposure we get to the sun and our exposure to smoke (either via smoking or second-hand smoke). 

   Scientists don’t understand why a lack of sleep, over which we do have control, contributes to bags under the eyes, but they speculate that it may be related to skin and blood supply changes in that area. 

   Cosmetics, in general, which claim to work wonders to erase circles under one’s eyes have not proven to be effective and can be costly.  Neither has cosmetic surgery shown any promise in relieving individuals of these bags.

  So outside of getting enough sleep and protecting yourself against the sun, perhaps the best way to deal with this “problem” is with a healthy dose...of     self-acceptance.


   Source:  www.bbc.co.uk