What is Rosacea Skin Disorder?

by Rachel Rae

Rosacea is a skin disorder that is often mistaken for severe acne or a sign of alcoholism. Some doctors believe it is a vascular problem at core. For people who have this disorder, it is very challenging. It is a chronic medical condition with no cure at this point. The symptoms are very real and can cause emotional pain and can be quite physically painful as well. However, many times the symptoms of rosacea can be managed.

What are the symptoms of rosacea? If you experience any of the following signs, you should consult a dermatologist right away. 1) Red or inflamed areas on the cheeks, forehead, nose, or chin 2) Visible blood vessels in the facial area 3) Pimples or bumpy areas on the face (other than whiteheads or blackheads) 4) Cheeks look flushed, but are not warm to touch (although sometimes is warm to the touch) 5) Watery eyes or irritated eyes in conjunction with the symptoms mentioned above 6) Thickening of the skin (occasionally) 7) Swelling of facial areas 8) Over time, the nose may appear extremely red and bulbous, especially in older men 9) Sometimes rosacea appears on the chest, scalp, ears, or neck

The exact cause of rosacea is not yet known at this point in time. It commonly shows up in both women and men sometime between 20 and 40 years of age. Some women can become isolated if left untreated because of the embarrassment of their appearance, plus the physical pain that many times goes with it. Men are sometimes emotionally affected as well.

Coping with rosacea can be a challenge. First and foremost, see a dermatologist. Rosacea can go into remission if you are careful to follow his recommendations. Along with medication, there are lifestyle changes that can be made to reduce that the flares of rosacea won’t occur as often. Limit your exposure to sun and wind, be vigilant about using a good quality sunscreen. Try to keep stress levels at a minimum by adopting a healthy lifestyle and spending quiet time each day. Alcohol should be avoided as it tends to trigger a flush. If you enjoy a bath, use warm water instead of really hot water. Exercise is not off limits, but try low-impact forms of exercise in place of high impact ones, or swimming would be great. Try to exercise in cooler weather. Hot weather will worsen rosacea symptoms. Some people who suffer from rosacea react to hot beverages or spicy food

Some people with rosacea have tried and claim some relief with creams containing green tea, Chrysanthellum Indicum, Niacinamide (a form of vitamin B3), or Azelaic Acid have been reported to reduce the appearance of blood vessels and red capillaries.

Some people who suffer from rosacea react to hot beverages or spicy food. If this is true for you, try warm beverages and not so spicy food.

If your doctor doesn’t prescribe special facial cleansers or products, I have found the following helpful. Use a very mild facial cleaner such as Oil of Olay sensitive skin facial cloths or Dove’s version. Be very gentle while washing your face, no heavy scrubbing. Do not use abrasive scrubs or astringent type products. I like using for moisture Neutrogena’s oil free moisturizer, and sometimes use pure emu oil as well. Many anti aging products tend to cause flare-ups. For cosmetics I like natural mineral makeup. There are many good brands out there. Try to get a green color corrector type product as a base under foundation, green counteracts the red of the skin and helps camouflage it so it looks more natural.

Men should use an electric razor instead of a razor blade to shave each morning in order to reduce irritation. Follow up with a gentle light non-scented moisturizer.

Rosacea can be a debilitating skin disorder. However, if it is managed properly, it doesn’t have to rob you of a fulfilled and wonderful life.

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