Rosacea is a condition that is characterized by reddening of the skin, which can eventually lead to inflammation, bumps, and even deformity around the nose. It can be quite disfiguring in its advanced stages.
Rosacea affects older women more than any other group, but young people and men can suffer from it as well. There are a lot of misconceptions about the condition, and it is difficult to control, but these tips will help you to live a normal life in spite of the condition.
1 – Understand Your Triggers
Rosacea can be triggered by stress, hormones, environment, smells and diet. If you have only recently been diagnosed, or if you are struggling with increasingly frequent flare-ups, try keeping a diary for a while so that you can understand what is causing your attacks.
While there are a few things, such as dairy products and spiced foods, that cause rosacea flare ups for a lot of people, some people can get away with those things and are triggered by other, less common foods or beverages. Keeping a diary is the only way to know for sure what is going to cause problems for you specifically.
2 – Realise That You Don’t Need to Explain Things to Anyone
Things to AnyoneWhile rosacea is very common in older people, it is less common in young people and there are a lot of misconceptions about it – for example, a lot of people associate it with alcoholism.
As a rosacea sufferer, you will face questions from some people who are less well-informed. Try to understand that most people are just curious and don’t realise that their questions come across as insensitive.
In addition, remember that it’s not your responsibility to answer every question that comes your way if you don’t want to. Try to come up with some standard answers, and don’t be afraid to simply say “I have a medical condition, and I do not wish to discuss it”, if that is what you want to say.
3 – Learn to Detect When an Outbreak is Happening
Some people experience tingling sensations and other warning signs just before they have a flare-up. If this is the case for you, then you may be able to reduce the severity of the flare up by treating it before it becomes serious. For example, some people find that sucking on ice cubes helps to stop flare ups from becoming serious.
4 – See a Proper Dermatologist
A lot of general practitioners do not have a good understanding of rosacea. If you want to make sure you are getting the best treatment for your condition, see a dermatologist or at the very least a GP that has a lot of experience with the condition.
You may need to be persistent to get to see someone qualified, but it will be worth it to get the condition under control.
5 – Consider Long Term Treatments
There are some long-term treatment options. For example, you can get laser treatment that will kill off the capilliaries closest to the skin, stopping the appearance of rosacea. This is a permanent cure for some people, and a long-lasting cure for others. It is unclear why the capilliaries grow back in some people but not for others. This treatment can be expensive, but it will last for many years at the very least, and will free you from having to apply antibiotics, steroids and other creams to control your skin issues.
6 – Take on Outbreaks Early
By trying to prevent and reduce the appearance of outbreaks, you will stop the likelihood of them getting worse. Early onset rosacea can sometimes just feel like persistent flushing, while you can end up with near-permanent rudiness and a rather disfigured appearance if the condition becomes advanced.
7 – Avoid Stress
Stress helps no-one and it can make a lot of conditions worse. Try to avoid situations where you are likely to get hot, bothered or stressed.
Some people find that taking up something like yoga or meditation helps them – not just to control rosacea but also to relax in general and to feel more comfortable.
With themselves and everything that is going on around them.Most medical conditions will be exacerbated by stress. Learning to relax, and finding an outlet for that stress, will put you in a much better situation.
8 – Ask Your Family For Advice
Rosacea tends to run in families. By talking to people who have gone through the same thing, you are likely to find valuable coping strategies. Where better to start with your support network than your family?
9 – Makeup Can Hide It, But Take Care of Your Skin
You can hide some of the flushed appearance of rosacea with makeup. Use a green-tinted foundation to get rid of some of the redness, then add some normal foundation over the top of that. However, if you do this you should be aware that people with rosacea tend to have more sensitive skin than others. Choose mild, gentle and non-allergenic makeup, and make sure that you remove it every night before you go to bed.
10 – Join a Support Group
In addition to talking to your family members, don’t forget that there is support available online. There are a lot of forums and websites devoted to discussing rosacea, and there are even societies that people can join.
Which aim to further research into the condition, and also help sufferers by keeping them informed with the latest medical knowledge and recommending products that may be of use. Take advantage of these resources.
11 – Avoid Harsh Skin Care Products
Many commercial skincare products contain ingredients that are irritating to those with dry, inflamed or sensitive skin. This means that they could be problematic for people who are suffering from a rosacea outbreak. Try to find natural skin care products that are unscented and that will not clog your pores or dry out your skin. Consider making your own skin care products out of fresh ingredients. This is better for your skin and the environment, and could save you money too!
12 – Don’t Fall for Common Myths
When you get diagnosed with rosacea, you will likely get a lot of well-meaning advice from people. They may tell you that coffee/chocolate/alcohol ALWAYS causes rosacea, or tell you about.
Some strange home remedy that always worked for their second cousin’s best friend’s brother. This advice comes from a good place – all the person wants to do is help – but that doesn’t mean that you have to listen.
If you aren’t sure what to say, consider thanking the person for their help and for thinking of you, but adding that you are working with your doctor/dermatologist/specialist on a course of treatment tailored for your circumstances. Most people will understand and stop offering unsolicited advice quite quickly. For those that do not, you may need to get more assertive, or simply learn to brush off what they have to say.
13 – Don’t Blindly Listen to Your Doctor
Not all doctors really understand rosacea. Some will prescribe stesuncreamroid treatments as a long-term thing for rosacea sufferers, for example.
This can be a bad idea because the steroids thin the skin, making the symptoms of rosacea more noticeable. If you feel like you aren’t getting the best possible treatment, ask for a second opinion.
14 – Take Care in the Summer
Sunburn can be a disaster for rosacea sufferers. Find a suncream that your skin can tolerate, and use it regularly. Cover up if you are going to be out in the sun for a long time.
15 – Take Care in the Winter Too!
Going from a cold environment into a warm one or vice-versa is another common rosacea trigger. Make sure that you keep your skin moisturized in the winter.
Wrap up when you can, and try not to spend all day in overly heated environments then run straight out into a freezing cold street. Yes, this is easier said than done but dry, stuffy central heating can be a rosacea sufferer’s worst enemy.
16 – Accept Your Limitations
If certain locations, foods or activities trigger attacks, try to avoid them. You may not be able to do certain kinds of exercise; try to accept that and find something that you can do. Repeatedly triggering mild rosacea attacks is only going to make your rosacea worse in the long time – the small amounts of swelling could spread, get bigger, and lead to burst capilliaries under your skin. Treat the rosacea first before pushing your limitations if you are not willing to accept that.
17 – Take Care of Your Eyes
Tingling eyes could be a sign of ocular rosacea, and this can have long-term repercussions. Don’t dismiss dry, sore or tingly eyes. Get them checked out to make sure that you aren’t putting your vision at risk.
18 – Remember You Are Not Alone
There are millions of people out there who suffer from rosacea. For some, it is mild. For others, it is in the advanced stages. You are not alone, and there is a high chance that most of the people you deal with on a day to day basis know someone who has the condition.
It can be frustrating to have to answer questions and deal with the embarrassment of a flare-up, but each time you explain things to someone you are helping to make the world a more understanding place. Take support where you can find it, and give support when you can give it – it does get easier.
Rosacea can be demoralizing and frustrating, but it doesn’t have to rule your life. Once you learn what triggers outbreaks and how to manage them, you can take control of the condition. Most people are able to lead a normal life and find that their rosacea does not define them or limit them.
Some people take a while to develop the confidence to accept the rosacea and go out in public/speak to crowds/behave normally – especially if the condition comes on suddenly later in life, but eventually they do get the confidence back.
Embrace your condition and remember that it does not define you and there is no shame to having it. Everyone has something that they do not like, whether their height, hair color, voice, complexion, or something else entirely. It is up to you how you deal with it, and if you just get on with your life as normal then you will have beaten the condition!