What is Rosacea?

What is Rosacea?

Managing Rosacea by Avoiding Triggers

Rosacea is a common chronic skin condition characterized by redness and tiny bumps. Frequently occurring in middle aged women with fair skin, rosacea has no cure. However, its symptoms can be controlled with treatments and self care remedies.

What Causes Rosacea?

Experts think that this condition is caused by a combination of genetic and environmental factors. It’s more common among women between the ages of 30 and 60 who have fair skin and a family history of the disease. For most people, the symptoms of rosacea are triggered by specific stimuli, which may include extreme heat or cold temperatures, spicy or hot foods or beverages, alcohol consumption, exposure to sunlight, stress or embarrassment, exercise, hot baths, and certain drugs, such as steroids or blood pressure medications.

Symptoms of Rosacea

The first sign of rosacea is usually swelling and redness in the center of the face (nose and cheeks). Small blood vessels may become visible. In addition to redness, you may experience tiny, pus-filled bumps that resemble acne and feel painful to the touch. Beyond skin symptoms, rosacea is often associated with eye problems such as dryness, irritation, and swollen eyelids. Some people may also experience thickness and swelling of the skin on the nose, causing a bulbous appearance.

Rosacea Treatment Options

Though rosacea is incurable, it’s possible for most people to manage their symptoms. The most important step to take if you have rosacea is to identify and avoid triggers. Keeping a journal can help you figure out what causes your flares so that you can protect yourself. If symptoms persist, antibiotics or acne drugs may be effective in resolving the rash. You should also always make sure to wear sunscreen of at least SPF 30, protect your face with a scarf in cold or windy weather, use only gentle cleansers and makeup, and avoid touching your face when the rash is present.

If you’re experiencing symptoms of rosacea, see a dermatologist. He or she can help make a diagnosis by ruling out conditions with similar symptoms, such as acne, lupus, psoriasis, and eczema. Once a diagnosis is determined, the doctor can make recommendations about finding and avoiding your triggers and monitor the condition to see if medication would be beneficial.

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