If your face tends to flush easily, is constantly red, or has may small broken capillaries across the nose and cheeks, you might have a condition called Rosacea.
Rosacea can very mild or very severe, and can be quite difficult to treat, especially if you have had it for a while.
Keep Reading to find out more about what causes Rosacea, and how to treat it!
What is Rosacea?
Rosacea is a fairly common condition that is caused by chronic inflammation of the central face (cheeks, nose, and eyes), and often develops between the ages of 30 and 50. Most patients with rosacea complain of flushing, chronic redness, telangectasias (tiny broken capillaries), and even acne. Typically, these symptoms will come and go over time, and are almost always triggered (or made worse) by certain triggers!
What are the most common triggers for Rosacea?
It is unknown what causes rosacea, but you should avoid anything that triggers a flare, or seems to aggravate your skin. Here are some of the most common triggers for rosacea:
- Sun Exposure: Always, always, always wear a good sunscreen if you have to be in the sun. This is the most common trigger in people with rosacea… and also the easiest to correct!
- Hot and Cold Weather: Avoid spending a lot of time in environments with extreme weather (very hot, cold, or windy).
- Stress: Try yoga, relaxation methods, deep breathing, etc
- Food & Drink: Spicy foods, wine, and caffeine (coffee and teas) are the most common offenders.
- Skin Care Products: Chemical peels and products that contain alpha-hydroxy acids (glyclic acid and lactic acid) can worsen rosacea symptoms.
Who is at risk for Rosacea?
Anyone can get rosacea, but people (particularly women) with fair skin, blonde hair and blue/green eyes tend to be more at risk. It also has a tendency to run in families, so chances are that if your parents or grandparents had it, you are more likely to get it.
How do you diagnose Rosacea?
There is no specific test to diagnose rosacea. The diagnosis it made by your physician based on the appearance and history of these symptoms.
How can you treat Rosacea?
Unfortunately, there is no “cure” for rosacea. However, there are many things you can do to help relieve the symptoms and prevent future flares.
- Avoiding your known triggers is the easiest, cheapest, and most effective way to control rosacea flares!
- Use SPF daily to decrease any sun exposure that can worsen the symptoms. Sunscreens that contain zinc oxide are the best.
- Oral antibiotics such as Tetracycline or Doxycycline are often used to help decrease acne, inflammation, and redness.
- Topical antibiotics, such Metronidazole, is often prescribed if oral antibiotics do not seem to be helping decrease inflammation and acne.
- Azeliac Acid (commonly used in skin lightening products) can help reduce inflammatory lesions, bumps, and papules caused by rosacea.
- Rosacea facials, offered at some doctors offices, can help decrease the redness of the skin and help with acne caused by rosacea. Many of these facials use a combination of azelaic acid, anti-inflammatory products, and LED lights to reduce inflammation and redness. The price of these facials varies, but our Rosacea facials at Manhttan Aesthetic Surgery typically cost around $200.
- Accutane is sometimes used if acne cannot be controlled with oral and topical antibiotics. However, because there are many side effects with this medication, it is only used in very severe cases.
- Vascular lasers and Intense-Pulsed Light (IPL) treatments are one of the best treatments for rosacea because it has a dramatic effect on small vessels and redness of the skin. There is very minimal down time with these lasers (so it is a great option for those with busy schedules), but plan on spending between $1000-$3000 for a series of treatments.
When it comes to treating rosacea, first thing is first… you need to find a doctor who regularly treats patients with rosacea. Most home remedies do not work, and since rosacea is not a curable disease, you need to find a doctor who you can follow up with you whenever you have a flare. Look for a Dermatologist or Plastic Surgeon who can offer everything from facials to lasers to help treat rosacea.
Shea Slaymaker, PA-C
Physician Assistant, Beauty & Skincare Expert
Manhattan Aesthetic Surgery