What is Rosacea – Symptoms and Treatments

Do you suffer from rosacea? Skin conditions like rosacea might not be life-threatening, but that does not mean they do not affect your quality of life. It is a common condition and the exact causes are still largely unknown. The bad news is that there is no known cure and if left untreated, the symptoms can worsen over time. But with a proper diagnosis and a long-term treatment plan you can ease the symptoms or get them to improve.

The symptoms of rosacea

Most common symptoms include redness and flushing on the nose, cheeks, forehead, and chin. Sometimes these symptoms can be accompanied by small, red bumps that people mistake for acne. Your blood vessels might swell up, become dilated and more visible. There might be patches of dry skin, enlarged pores, and your skin might burn or sting. Some people who suffer from rosacea will also experience eye problems such as stinging, swollen and tender eyelids, and broken blood vessels on the eyelids.

Who is more prone to rosacea and common triggers

The chances that you might suffer from rosacea go up if someone in your family has/had the same problem. Likewise, it more often affects women between the ages of 30 and 50. If you previously suffered from acne and if you are pale and have blonde hair, you might be more susceptible to rosacea.
You might have a rosacea flare-up and then your skin might calm down for a while. Triggers vary – some people react to hot and spicy food, extreme heat or cold, prolonged exposure to the sun and harsh wind, emotional stress, skincare products, and certain types of medication.

How to treat rosacea

First and foremost – if you are not sure whether the symptoms you are experiencing are rosacea or not, make an appointment with your GP or ask for a dermatologist referral. It is imperative to get a correct diagnosis.
Once the diagnosis is made, your doctor might suggest a number of possible treatments. It can be a topical treatment such as Brimonidine or Azelaic acid. Alternatively, in some cases, you might be prescribed antibiotics. Depending on the severity of your condition other treatment options include laser therapy, IPL or dermabrasion.

Since your skin is easily irritated, it can be difficult to find the right skincare products that will help soothe the skin. Always patch test when you introduce new products into your routine. Likewise, make sure to apply sunscreen on daily basis to protect your skin. Switch to gentle, soothing cleansers that will protect the skin barrier function. Try to avoid products that have ingredients that can cause irritation (the most common would be fragrance, alcohol, essential oils, and surfactants, but you know your skin the best). If you don’t know where to start, keep your routine simple. Look for products that target redness and are suited for sensitive skin.

Do you suffer from rosacea? Are there any products that you have found helpful when you are experiencing a flare-up?

Roberta Striga