An estimated 415 million people worldwide are living with rosacea, a skin condition that causes redness, bumps, visible blood vessels on the face, and even an enlarged nose. And while some people may dismiss rosacea as a naturally rosy or ruddy complexion, the condition can cause significant ongoing discomfort and embarrassment for its sufferers.
So, if you find yourself, particularly as a person age 30 or older, looking decidedly ruddy, you should understand that after a diagnosis of rosacea, you should be prepared to manage the condition for a lifetime for several reasons:
Because there is no known cure.
While there are treatments for rosacea, there is no known cure. And because each person with rosacea is affected differently, you should seek medical advice for a treatment plan tailored to your symptoms.
Because it’s progressive.
Rosaea can get worse over time, especially if it’s not managed. It typically goes through stages of flare-ups and remissions but can be well controlled with the right treatments. This makes seeking treatment early so important.
Because it’s sneaky.
With its signature redness and bumps, rosacea can be mistaken for adult acne or eczema – but it isn’t. And treatments for other skin conditions can actually worsen rosacea. That’s why a doctor’s care is essential – and you’ll also need to learn to care for your skin and how to tell when what you’re dealing with is your rosacea or something else.
Because it can be triggered.
Many people find that their rosacea symptoms worsen with heat, stress, exercise, alcohol consumption, or even spicy food. Your physician can help you identify your rosacea triggers and develop a plan to help you avoid them.
Living with Rosacea
- Medicines – including topical treatments to reduce redness and inflammation, oral antibiotics, and other medications
- Laser therapy – to reduce the redness of enlarged blood vessels
- Dermabrasion and intense pulsed light therapy – to treat visible blood vessels and other symptoms
In addition to these treatments, you can help tame rosacea at home with a few simple strategies. First, be kind to your skin, using gentle skincare products that your dermatologist recommends. Use a broad-spectrum sunscreen with an SPF of 30 or higher every day and reapply throughout the day. Avoid the triggers you and your physician have identified. If you like, you can also apply makeup to the affected areas. Some brands carry green-tinted concealing creams that balance the redness out and can be applied under a color that matches your skin tone.
Managing rosacea through ongoing care both at home and in coordination with your dermatologist can help you live well with rosacea. And if you think you might have symptoms, schedule an appointment with a Kelsey-Seybold dermatologist for a diagnosis and treatment plan customized to your needs.
Dr. Tran is a board-certified dermatologist at Kelsey-Seybold’s Fort Bend Medical and Diagnostic Center. Her clinical interests include rosacea, eczema, psoriasis, rashes, warts, abnormal skin growths, moles, skin cancer, cutaneous surgery, general Dermatology, and other conditions of the skin, hair, and nails.