Rosacea Information & Treatment Options

Know Rosacea Symptoms & Triggers

Patients with rosacea often experience facial redness and swelling, visible small blood vessels, and watery eyes. Inflammation from this chronic condition may affect all parts of the face, including the eyelids and forehead. Rosacea has no known cause or cure and isn't contagious, though some medical evidence suggests it is inherited. Appearance usually starts at age 30 and will appear intermittently throughout life. As the condition progresses, facial redness changes to a ruddy color as small blood vessels appear. Bumps and pimples may form without treatment, along with increased nasal swelling and eye irritation.

Rosacea has a higher incidence among people with fair skin and occurs more often among women than men. But, men tend to suffer more severe symptoms. Most patients experience more than one symptom at varying levels of severity. Common symptoms include:

    • Bumps or acne-like pimples;
    • Burning, itching, or stinging sensations of facial skin;
    • Facial swelling;
    • Flushing;
    • Persistently red facial skin;
    • Raised red patches on the face;
    • Rough and dry facial skin;
    • Visible blood vessels; and
    • Watery or irritated eyes.

These symptoms may also appear on the chest, ears, neck, and scalp.

The National Rosacea Foundation found leading triggers include alcohol, spicy foods, strenuous exercise, and weather conditions. Your dermatologist will likely prescribe oral antibiotics and topical medications to reduce symptom severity. During remission periods, patients may only need topical treatments. For more severe cases medical devices, such as vascular lasers can be used to remove visible blood vessels and reduce excessive redness.

A gentle skin care routine is recommended to help reduce rosacea flare-ups. Use mild cleansers with lukewarm water and pat skin dry after cleansing — don't rub. Always use sunscreens with at least SPF 30 and UVA and UVB eliminating sunblocks before sun exposure. Patients are encouraged to keep notes of when flare-ups occur and environmental and lifestyle conditions when the flare-ups happen. The notes may help determine triggers and patterns which may be controlled and/or eliminated.

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