So When Do We Reach Our Peak? If You've Ever Worried That Your Best Years Are Behind You, It Might Be a Relief to Know That Some Aspects of Our Health Do Actually Improve with Age

Daily Record (Glasgow, Scotland), May 8, 2014 | Go to article overview

So When Do We Reach Our Peak? If You've Ever Worried That Your Best Years Are Behind You, It Might Be a Relief to Know That Some Aspects of Our Health Do Actually Improve with Age


Byline: Adrian Monti

NAILS PEAK AGE: 29 FOR both women and men, nail condition peaks in the late 20s when they are normally shiny, transparent, flexible, strong and smooth.

"After 35, the signs of ageing start to show. Once we get to 50, nails often show more age signs such as vertical ridges, yellowing, reduced flexibility, peeling and splitting," said nail expert Jennie Nippard.

SMELL PEAK AGE: 33 ALTHOUGH we have a well-developed sense of smell from birth, it gets more refined in our teens and beyond.

"Our smell develops more as the surface area of olfactory mucosa, that's the small area on the roof of our nasal cavities, increases during the growth of the nose until around 17, when the surface area is about 10 square centimetres," said Ullas Raghavan, a consultant ear, nose and throat specialist.

Both sexes have a good sense of smell in their 30s before ageing reduces the neurons in this area.

HEARING PEAK AGE: 14 OUR sensitivity to sounds, especially at high frequency, deteriorates with age.

"In general, our hearing is at its best in our youth when our ears are 'new'," said audiologist Dr Dan Butterworth.

He addded that loss of hearing is more rapid in men: "As we age, the delicate structures within the organ of hearing decline."

BONES PEAK AGE: 30 (female) 32 (male) OUR bone mass - the strength of our bones - is at its strongest between the ages of 25 and 35 and starts to decline after we hit the age of 40.

"During puberty, both sexes acquire bone mass at similar rates but following that, it tends to be higher in men than women," said Simon Moyes, a consultant orthopaedic surgeon.

"Men accumulate more skeletal mass than women and women are more at risk of osteoporosis."

IMMUNE SYSTEM PEAK AGE: 30 OUR immunity to bugs and diseases is at its weakest when we're very young and after 70, experts say.

"It's hard to say at which age we peak. Our immune system is affected by the lifestyle we lead and our own biological structure," said Dr Davina Deniszczyc, wellbeing medical director at Nuffield Health. "Most people see a peak between their mid-20s to late 30s."

EYES PEAK AGE: Six STATISTICS show that eyesight for both genders is probably best before the age of seven.

"Studies have shown that the prevalence of myopia steadily increases with age but those who don't develop myopia or other problems can continue to have very good eyesight until around 40," said Malcolm McPherson, an optometrist and member of the Council of Optometrists. …

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