If your face gets red frequently, it may be more than a blush … you may be one of the more than 16 Million Americans that has rosacea.
You may first notice redness, like a sunburn, on your cheeks, nose, forehead, and chin. The redness comes and goes at first, but could become more frequent, or even permanent over time without treatment.
No one knows exactly what causes rosacea, but it can run in families and flare-ups can be triggered by certain foods and environmental conditions.
Types of Rosacea
Rosacea most often affects the face, but can also show up on the neck, scalp, chest, and eyes. There are four subtypes, though it’s not uncommon to have symptoms from more than one.
- Erythematotelangiectatic Rosacea presents with persistent redness on the face, caused when capillaries and small blood vessels become enlarged and visible. Symptoms often flare up and then disappear on their own, but without treatment, the redness can worsen and become permanent.
- Papulopustular Rosacea can be mistaken for acne. That’s understandable, as its “whitehead” papules often show up on the cheeks, chin, and forehead. Blemishes may also appear on the scalp, neck, or chest and general redness and flushing of the face may also be present.
- Phymatous Rosacea creates thickened, bumpy, swollen skin that may also be discolored. This rare but treatable type most often affects the nose and affects men more frequently than women.
- Ocular Rosacea affects the eyes, causing them to look watery or bloodshot, with associated irritation or burning sensation. This form of rosacea may be more common than previously thought because the skin and eye symptoms may not have been recognized as being linked.
Discovering the type (or types) of rosacea that cause your symptoms is just one small part of a complete diagnosis.
Once you’ve been diagnosed, it’s easier to recognize what everyday habits and routines may be contributing to your symptoms.
Here are some of the most common triggers:
- Heat (sun exposure, hot weather, hot baths)
- Stress (emotional and physical)
- Weather (humidity, wind)
- Spicy Foods
Keep a diary and note what you believe triggers your rosacea so you can pass the information to your dermatologist at your next visit.
It’s important to take good care of your skin when you have rosacea.
Your dermatologist may prescribe medicines, suggest dietary and lifestyle changes, and/or recommend dermatologic procedures to manage your rosacea.
Here are some treatment options they may recommend:
- Oral antibiotics/medicines
- Prescription creams and lotions
- Dietary changes
- Glycolic acid peels
It’s important to take a long-term approach to your rosacea management. Noticeable changes may take weeks or months to see but keep to the treatment plan for best results.
Daily Skin Care Routine
Your daily skin care routine should be rosacea-friendly. To get the most out of your treatment plan, make sure to take care of your skin using the following tips:
- Wash twice daily with gentle cleansing products and techniques to minimize irritation.
- Apply topical medication (if any) after cleansing and before moisturizer. Make sure to allow your face to dry after cleansing before application.
- Apply moisturizer to minimize sensitivity and irritation.
- Apply sunscreen (SPF 30+) daily. If you have sensitive skin you may want to use a moisturizer/sunscreen combination product.
- Apply makeup to minimize redness, improve the look of your skin, and boost confidence. Makeup Tips
- Men may want to apply a moisturizer to soothe the skin after shaving.
Get Help to Manage Your Rosacea
At this time, there is no cure for rosacea, but professional treatments by your dermatologist can lessen or even reverse your symptoms.
The dermatologists at Integrated Dermatology of Tidewater can diagnose your symptoms and recommend a treatment plan to improve the look and feel of your skin.
Call the office at (757) 461-1033 (Opt. 1.) today to schedule your appointment.