How to Recognize and Treat Your Rosacea
Common Rosacea SymptomsAnyone can develop rosacea. It’s more likely to occur in people with fair skin who smoke, are over 30, or have a family history of it. Women are more likely to develop the condition versus men, and people who experience sun damage have a higher risk factor. The most common signs and symptoms of rosacea include:
- Facial Redness or Blushing: Persistent facial redness in the central part of the face, usually across the cheeks and nose, is a common symptom of rosacea. As the blood vessels in these areas swell, redness becomes more visible.
- Swollen Bumps: Pimples that resemble and are often mistaken as acne develop. Sometimes the bumps will contain puss, but they are often just red and visible. They can make the skin feel hot and tender.
- Eye Issues: More than 50% of rosacea sufferers have eye involvement. Chronic inflammation, irritation, swelling, and red or flushed eyelids are common manifestations of ocular rosacea. In some cases, eye problems appear before skin symptoms. People with ocular rosacea should follow-up with an ophthalmologist.
- Facial Swelling: In extreme cases, rosacea can thicken the skin and cause the nose to appear large or bulbous. This is more common in men than women.
The Cause of RosaceaExperts don’t know what causes rosacea, but according to Medical News Today, they have identified factors that are thought to contribute:
- Pale Skin: People who have fair or pale skin are more likely to have rosacea.
- Abnormal Blood Vessels: Dermatologists suggest that abnormalities in facial blood vessels may be behind the persistent flushing and redness of rosacea. Thanks to these abnormalities, the blood vessels become visible due to inflammation, but the source of the inflammation is still unknown.
- Bacterial Element: Experts have discovered that a bacteria found in the gut called H. pylori can stimulate the production of bradykinin, which is known to cause blood vessels to dilate. It’s theorized the presence of this bacterium may contribute to the cause of rosacea.
- Increased Dermodex Folliculorum (DF): DF refers to a microscopic mite that lives on the skin. It generally doesn’t cause a problem, but people with rosacea tend to have more of these mites than people who don’t. Could the mites be a contributing cause? It’s possible, but experts don’t yet have an answer.
- Family History: It’s common for rosacea to run in the family, which indicates a genetic factor. If anyone in your immediate family has it, your chances of developing it are higher but not definitive.
Rosacea TreatmentRosacea is known to have triggers that vary person to person. Identifying and avoiding triggers can help manage symptoms. Some of the most common include:
- Hot beverages and alcohol
- Hot or spicy foods
- Caffeine and dairy products
- Extreme temperatures
- Humidity, sunlight, and wind
- Hot baths, showers, and saunas
- Stress and anxiety
- Vigorous exercise
- Some medications
- Acute and chronic medical conditions