What is Rosacea?
Red patches of skin on your face, tiny visible blood vessels and spots: many people know these problems well. They may be caused by rosacea – a common inflammation of facial skin. Skin diseases can be difficult to cope with and often affect people’s confidence and wellbeing. Rosacea is no exception. But there is a lot that people can do themselves. This fact sheet describes what exactly rosacea is, how it is treated and what can be done to relieve the symptoms.
Rosacea is a chronic inflammation of the skin on the face which can last for many years. It often develops into a rash, with papules and pustules (red and yellow pimples) and spidery red veins. It comes and goes in bouts: sometimes the symptoms get worse and sometimes they get better or go away on their own.
It usually starts over the age of 20, affecting about 1 in 10 adults, and is more common in fair-skinned people and women. Many do not realize that they have a skin condition.
There are four different stages of rosacea:
stage 1: mostly redness,
stage 2: papules, pustules and patches,
stage 3: edemas (swelling due to fluid retention) and inflammatory bumps on the nose, and
stage 4: symptoms affecting the eyes.
Rosacea does not necessarily always get worse: in many people, the symptoms stay the same over long periods of time.
The lumps and swelling are often particularly unpleasant, and can lead to a swollen and bulbous nose, usually in men (a condition called rhinophyma).
Rosacea can be especially problematic if it affects the eyelids or eyes. Inflammation around the eyelids, dryness in the eyes and corneal inflammation can be painful. In very rare cases, if the eyes are regularly affected badly, rosacea can cause serious damage to the eyes.
What causes rosacea?
The exact cause of rosacea is not clear. Some types of rosacea seem to run in families. It is more common in people who have fair hair and fair skin. However, we know that rosacea is not contagious. Although the symptoms include pimples, rosacea is not acne. Acne is caused by too much sebum (oil) in the skin, but this is not what causes rosacea.
Rosacea is believed to be caused by several things: problems in the blood vessels in the skin, sun damage of the connective tissue, and an abnormal inflammatory reaction. Rosacea may also be an adverse effect of some medications.
What can I do to avoid outbreaks of rosacea?
Over time, people often learn that certain things trigger their outbreaks. The triggers can be different from person to person. In general, though, anything that makes the face flush might make rosacea worse. Some people react to certain foods or alcohol, others react to cosmetics or particular medications. Getting to know what these triggers are and avoiding them may help, although it is not known if any particular dietary changes work.
Sunlight is believed to be one of the potential triggers. Although the effects of sunlight on rosacea symptoms vary from person to person, sunburn stresses the skin and may even damage it.
Keeping a diary for a few weeks or months can help to find out what is triggering outbreaks. A diary like this can be used to record:
how much of certain foods and drinks (such as spicy meals or alcohol) you had,
what other factors your skin was exposed to (like the sun, wind, exercise, hot water),
how bad your rosacea symptoms were, and
when you used medication, what kind of medication, and how much.
You will find a printable version of a rosacea diary for you to use here.
If you suspect that something is triggering your rosacea flare-ups, you can observe whether your symptoms are really affected by it. For example, if you think that a facial cream you are using is making things worse, you can stop using it for a while and keep track in your diary of whether your rosacea symptoms get better.
What are the treatment options?
There are a lot of creams, lotions and gels recommended for the treatment of rosacea but not all of them have been studied sufficiently in trials.
The treatments with the most evidence so far are creams and gels with either azelaic acid or the antibiotic metronidazole in them. They have been shown to help relieve the symptoms of rosacea. It can sometimes take a few weeks before a clear improvement is seen.
Antibiotics such as erythromycin, clindamycin or drugs belonging to a group called tetracyclines are also used. There are indications that the antibiotic drug doxycycline from the group of tetracyclines can help to relieve skin redness in rosacea. Other drugs that are taken by mouth have not been studied enough. Drugs that are swallowed have an effect on the entire body, so they have more adverse effects than ointments or creams. The adverse effects include diarrhea, nausea and sensitivity to light.
The hormone-like substance isotretinoin is a very powerful drug. In Germany, it has only been approved for use against severe acne. It is associated with a lot of adverse effects, such as skin and mucous membrane irritations, some of which are serious. Because of this, isotretinoin is only used very cautiously in the treatment of rosacea, particularly for more serious cases, in the form of capsules. It cannot be used by women who might get pregnant because it can harm unborn babies.
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What effects does rosacea have and how can I cope with it?
Although rosacea is normally harmless, facial redness can be very difficult to handle emotionally. Many people with the condition will have experienced unpleasant situations, like being stared at or realizing that others suspect that their nose is red because they drink too much alcohol. This usually happens due to a lack of knowledge about rosacea. Some people find it helpful to be open about their skin condition and explain it to their family, friends and colleagues.
Even though rosacea is such a common condition, many people know very little about it. Other common skin conditions like acne are much better known, and so more people understand how difficult it can be. The people around you may not find the problem as noticeable as you do yourself: we often look at our own faces much more closely and critically than others do. If the redness in your face is obvious and makes you self-conscious, then cosmetics could help make the problem less obvious. You need to be careful, though, that the cosmetics that you use do not themselves make the rosacea worse. If the symptoms keep returning, learning how you can avoid some outbreaks and cope with the symptoms when they do occur are both key to helping you manage the condition.
If You Have Rosacea, I Have Encouraging News For You
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I know that Rosacea cannot be cured, but my customers are very happy with their improved, or entirely absent Rosacea symptoms.
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I use SkinFix twice a day to control Rosacea. I love it!”
“ I saw immediate results in 24 hours with this cream......it was great!”
“SkinFix has helped my rosacea, I have never been as happy for a long time”
“it has greatly helped with itching and redness”
“I had Rosacea for over a year and this was the only product that REALLY cleared it up”
“It has worked wonders already, the redness and inflammation has gone down”
“It works wonderfully well and I am happy to be able to order more.”
“After I received SkinFix and used it for about2 days, I noticed a HUGE difference in the color”
“at last I have found a product that actually makes the skin on my face look normal”
It is a balm for my poor skin (which I hasten to add is fine at the moment, thanks to your product!!).
“ cooling on the skin, reducing the heat and flushed colouring specific to Rosacea”
“I am still convinced that yours is the most helpful, useful, and amazing skin care discovery EVER!!”
“Leave a tingly feeling and very soothing on the skin. Also, reduces redness.”
“SkinFix immediately brought the itching under control and improvement has been steady and sure.”
“I'm tremendously pleased with Skin Fix - I use it every day for a mild case of Rosacea.”
“This is my 4th order. It helps my Rosacea”
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