What’s the best treatment for Rosacea?
There’s lots about Rosacea that we don’t know. A chronic skin disorder with a curiously pretty name, the exact cause still baffles dermatologists.
First things first – what is Rosacea?
It’s an inflammatory condition that affects the facial skin. The main symptom is redness, which is often seen in a ‘butterfly’ shape across the nose and cheeks.
Other symptoms can include spots, bumps, visible blood vessels, swelling, red eyes and skin flaking.
It only occurs in adults – usually appearing between age 30 and 60. And though it’s more common in women, it affects men more severely.
At its most extreme, Rosacea can lead to rhinophyma, where abnormal gland growth makes the nose swollen and bulbous. But this is very rare, especially among women, and can be treated with surgery.
Most people living with Rosacea find the condition tends to fluctuate – flaring up, then going into remission, before flaring up again.
What causes it?
We don’t know the exact cause of Rosacea. But various theories have been mooted over the years.
There does seem to be a genetic link – around 40% of people with Rosacea have at least one family member who suffers too.
Some experts think the skin mite Demodex folliculorum and bacteria Helicobacter pylori (associated with stomach ulcers) may be partly responsible for the symptoms.
Others believe it could be down to a fault with the body’s temperature control system.
All in all, it’s a bit of a mystery.
What we do know is that several aggravating factors can make Rosacea worse. Control these and your symptoms should be less acute.
Hands down, the most important thing is to limit sun exposure – and make sure you use high SPF sun protection when you can’t avoid direct sunlight.
The rest of the list will be familiar to anyone with acne or thread veins.
Extremes of temperature (both hot and cold), alcohol, caffeine, stress, exposure to wind, spicy food, exercise, drugs including steroids, and some skin care products have all been found to make Rosacea worse.
So – hard as it may be – limiting your exposure to as many of those as you can will help keep Rosacea in check.
You can find out more about managing Rosacea on the NHS website.
Is there any reliable treatment for Rosacea?
As a complicated condition with no definitive cause, the bad news is there’s also no definitive cure.
But just like acne, making lifestyle changes and trying a combination approach to treating the symptoms can deliver good results.
The most common treatment for Rosacea is the use of prescription drugs – both topical and oral. Antibiotics, anti-inflammatories and blood pressure medications can all help – the latter by reducing flushing.
Intensed pulsed light (IPL) or laser treatment for Rosacea can be great for tackling both the redness and the tiny visible blood vessels.
And regular light chemical peels can also help, both on their own merits and by prepping the skin ready for IPL treatment.
But it’s very important to go carefully when it comes to skin peels. Harsher peels can sometimes make Rosacea worse!
To speak to one of our skin experts about treatment for Rosacea, give us a call on 01844 318825 or fill in our quick contact form. We’ll be happy to arrange a free consultation to speak to one of our aesthetic nurses about what might help you.