There Is No Cure for Rosacea, but It Can Be Managed
Medical science has yet to fully understand what causes rosacea or discover a cure. Some people seem to just be predisposed to the condition, plus there are known triggers that can induce flare ups leading to bothersome redness, irritation, and unattractive nodules. Worse still, it can lead to permanent damage in the form of thick lumpy areas on the nose due to overgrowth of oil gland tissue; when this condition develops it is called rhinophyma. So what can rosacea sufferers do to manage and control their symptoms and avoid the consequences of untreated rosacea?
Rosacea is a skin disease that causes a distinct and easily identified reddening of the face, particularly around the nose and cheeks, caused by the blood vessels expanding. It may involve small red bumps on the red part of the face and may cause your eyes to feel sore and sting which is referred to as ocular rosacea. Normally the eruption doesn’t strike until the 30s and tends to run in families of fair-skinned people who blush easily. Various factors can trigger a flare up, but knowing what your triggers are and how to protect your skin can help prevent flare ups. It might not eliminate them, but it can definitely reduce the number and intensity of rosacea flare ups. Some triggers are common, and once you understand that you need to avoid them, you can start to control your rosacea instead of letting it control you. Here are some of the more common triggers for rosacea:
- The weather is a big factor for many people with rosacea. Hot humid weather is a common trigger, especially if you are out in the sun without proper protection. Wind can also be a trigger, making a sunny day at the beach a real danger zone.
- We all need to get enough exercise, but vigorous activity can trigger a flare up of rosacea for many sufferers. Proceed with caution, and try to avoid getting overheated.
- Hot, spicy food, like hot weather, can also lead to an episode of rosacea. Better to avoid that tempting hot spicy dish with jalapenos or red pepper, especially on a big date or other special occasion where you want to look your best.
- While the old notions about rosacea indicating a drinking problem are totally false, alcohol can trigger a flare up. Moderation is important, and you should consider the other potential triggers. A drink indoors in the evening is probably safer than one out in the sun midday as far as your rosacea is concerned. For some reason, red wine is responsible for more flare ups than any other alcoholic beverage.
- Heat the big trigger, and that includes hot baths. Anything that raises your temperature is likely to trigger your rosacea and that includes a nice, hot bath unfortunately. Hot beverages, especially coffee can make rosacea worsen.
If you are an individual with rosacea, you have probably learned what the specific triggers are that cause your skin to flare up. So, the first step in managing the condition is to avoid those triggers.
The good news is that you don’t actually have to hide in the shadows and avoid the sun like Dracula to keep your skin healthy. If avoiding triggers alone doesn’t help, your dermatologist can also treat your rosacea. Medical treatments involve oral anti-inflammatory medication, topical medications in the form of creams or gels. When indicated, laser treatments with vascular settings close off the vessels that cause the redness. Once the vessels are reduced or gone, the breakouts usually decrease significantly as well.
If you suffer a flare up, get to the doctor to help heal it and find out how to prevent future ones while still enjoying your life. The sooner you get help for a flare up, the less intense it will be. This will help protect you from the disfiguring changes that can occur with long term activity of rosacea.