What are the symptoms of rosacea? If you experience any of the following signs, you should consult a dermatologist right away.
1) Red or inflamed areas on the cheeks, forehead, nose, or chin
2) Visible blood vessels in the facial area or “spider veins”
3) Acne or bumpy areas on the face (that are not really acne)
4) Severe flushing that doesn’t return to normal like it should
5) Watery eyes or irritated eyes sometimes
6) Facial burning sensation, sometimes very intense
7) Swelling of facial areas
8) Over time, the nose may appear extremely red and bulbous, especially in older men, also known as rhinophyma
9) Sometimes rosacea appears on the chest, scalp, ears, or neck
Rosacea is a skin disorder that is often mistaken for severe acne or a sign of alcoholism. For those who suffer from this disorder, it is very difficult. It is a chronic medical condition with no cure. Many times there’s a tendency for others to believe it’s a cosmetic only issue and discount how truly physically painful it can be. However, the symptoms of rosacea can be managed and controlled.
Rosacea can be a debilitating skin disorder. Sometimes women can be vulnerable to isolating themselves due to their appearance. However, if it is managed properly, it doesn’t have to rob you of a fulfilled and wonderful life.
Many times the acne like appearance is not true acne in the classic sense, but actually are immune cells (look like red bumps and sometimes called papules and pustules) that have rushed to the face thinking there was an infection to be fought because of the flushing fever that came.
Not all rosacea sufferers have the acne, papules and pustules but it’s a common misconception that all do. The red, flushed facial mask is the true mark of rosacea, and it’s a blood vessel issue.
The cause of rosacea is not known, but many doctors feel the root is a vascular or inflammation problem. It seems to show up in both women and men sometime between 20 and 40 years of age. Sometimes menopause in women seem to be a trigger for it’s onset, due to “hot flashes” associated with menopause.
How can you cope with rosacea? First and foremost, see a dermatologist who has helped others with this skin disorder. If he prescribes a medication, give it a try and see if your symptoms improve. Rosacea can go into remission if you are careful to adhere to the plan recommended by your doctor.
Along with medication, there are several lifestyle changes that can be made to ensure that the breakouts of rosacea won’t occur as often. Limit your exposure to sun and wind, be vigilant about using a good quality sunscreen. Try to keep stress levels at a minimum by adopting a healthy lifestyle and spending quiet time each day. Alcohol should be avoided as it tends to trigger a flush. If you enjoy a bath, use warm water instead of really hot water. Exercise is not off limits, but try low-impact forms of exercise in place of high impact ones, or swimming would be great. Try to exercise in cooler weather. Hot weather will worsen rosacea symptoms. Some people who suffer from rosacea react to hot beverages or spicy food.
There are home treatments that seem to have helped some rosacea sufferers. Creams containing green tea, Chrysanthellum Indicum, Niacinamide (a form of vitamin B3), or Azelaic Acid have been reported to help reduce the appearance of blood vessels and red capillaries when applied topically.
Typically anti aging creams tend to worsen symptoms. Try to use very gentle products that are not abrasive, and not scented.
For cosmetics I like natural mineral makeup such as Bare Escentuals bareMinerals SPF 15 Foundation. There are many good brands out there. Try to get a green color corrector type product as a base under foundation, green counteracts the red of the skin and helps camouflage it so it looks more natural.
Men should use an electric razor rather than a blade to shave each morning. Follow up with a fragrance-free moisturizer.
This book Vascular, Ocular & Acne Forms I found to be very helpful and information. Written by a doctor who also suffers from severe rosacea he gives a well balanced approach to coping with rosacea as well as a an in-depth look at the various medical treatments available now, various laser and light therapies and much more. I highly recommend it.
By Valerie Garner