April is Rosacea Awareness Month. Rosacea is a skin problem that many of us struggle with. It can be a difficult one to manage but knowing how best to look after your skin can help reduce the symptoms. So, I am here to letting you know all about Rosacea, the symptoms and the different products you can use to help your skin.
What is Rosacea?
Rosacea is a chronic inflammatory condition which often gets misdiagnosed as it has similar characteristics to acne, sunburn and rosy cheeks. Rosacea can vary substantially between patients but the typical symptoms include a persistent facial redness (erythema) seen across the t-zone and cheeks (which over time can have flare-ups and remissions). The symptoms may also include acne like pimples and pustules as well as visible blood vessels (telangiectasia). In some severe cases, nose and eyes can also be affected. The onset of rosacea is observed mainly between the ages of 30 and 50 but anyone can be diagnosed at any age.
Although the cause is not completely understood, it is believed to be linked to few different factors ranging from abnormal blood vessels to skin mites to simply genetics. There are also some known triggers which can aggravate and worsen the condition. Sunlight, alcohol, stress, spicy food and even exercise can all play a part in progression of rosacea.
How can you treat Rosacea?
Unfortunately there is no cure for rosacea but there are ways to manage it and minimise its effects. As the condition is progressive, it can worsen with time if left untreated. Therefore it is advised that it is managed by medication and lifestyle changes.
Dependingon the type of Rosacea, there are a number of different ways and products to help manage, and cover the symptoms of Rosacea.
Redness (Erythematotelangiectatic Rosacea)
There are a few different prescription only drugs which offer reduction in redness however they are often only prescribed under supervision of a dermatologist. These include the like of clonidine, beta-blockers (such as propranolol) and some anti-anxiety drugs.
Another option is use of Brimonidine Tartrate gel which is also known as Mirvaso. It is quite new on the market but has shown some great results as a vasoconstrictor. Due to being a gel, it also provides soothing and hydration to the skin.
Papules or Pustules (Papulopustular Rosacea)
These are treated according to severity of the condition. For mild symptoms topical agents can be used such as metronidazole or azealic acid. If needed systemic antibiotics are often prescribed i.e. erythromycin, lymecyclime or oxytetracycline. Very severe symptoms are treated with low doses of Isotretinoin (Roaccutane) under the supervision of dermatologist.
Eye Symptoms (Ocular Rosacea)
A little more difficult to manage but good hygiene can help as well some of the oral antibiotics.
Nasal Symptoms (Phymatous Rosacea)
The symptoms are mainly dealt with surgery or laser.
Cosmetic Treatments for Rosacea
With more research being done on Rosacea, there are some great alternatives to prescription only medication. Visible Blood Vessels, Sensitivity, Itchiness, Burning and Swelling can be reduced by good skin care, protection from sun and use of makeup / camouflage creams. This is where Lookfantastic can definitely help.
For Skincare, we really recommend La Roche-Posay Rosaliac range.
In terms of Cosmetics, there are a lot of products that can help cover redness whilst you are flaring up. Check out this post for our 4 favourite products for covering redness.
Rosacea is definitely a difficult skincare issue to manage, but with the right treatment and great products, your symptoms can really be reduced. If you have any questions at all about Rosacea, just leave them down below and the LF Pharmacist will try to help you out.