The most common reason is cigarette smoking. The next is chronic exposure to sunlight (especially its UV band), since this accelerates skin aging and wrinkling (actinic face). Progeria (Hutchinson-Gilford syndrome) is an exotic and much more ominous reason. It affects 1 in 8 million newborns, accelerating the aging process by 6– 8 times. Symptoms begin around 18–24 months of age, with stunted growth, alopecia, and a small/bizarre face with receding jaw and pinched nose. Atherosclerosis and cardiovascular disease eventually follow, killing patients by their late teens.
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