Rosacea is one of the more common of skin conditions. It can affect up to one in ten people. Unlike some of the more common skin conditions however, rosacea is not really understood. Even now we are not completely sure what causes the skin condition.
On this page I want to give you a brief overview about what rosacea is all about. I am not going to discuss the causes or treatment methods that you have at your disposal on this page.
So, What is Rosacea Exactly?
Well, this is a chronic skin condition. This means that if you suffer from it then it is more than likely going to return again numerous times. It is unlikely that you will ever be cured of the condition HOWEVER there are a numbers of options you have available to help keep it at bay.
Sometimes Rosacea is referred to as the same sort of condition as acne. However, it is important to realize that it is not the same condition. They are completely different from one another and thus a treatment that has been designed for acne will not work on the rosacea. Rosacea normally starts to occur at around the age of thirty, however it can appear in somebody much sooner than that.
Rosacea mostly affects the face. However, in very rare cases you may find that the condition also affects other parts of your body. Where it affects will be different from person to person. The symptoms of rosacea are also different from person to person. For the most part however, you will suffer from at least a couple of the following:
Rosacea Symptoms and Signs
- Flushing of the skin: This is probably the first indication that you are going to suffer from rosacea. Many people experience flushing of the skin (i.e. redness) early on in their life. In fact, it can start off in childhood or in your teenage years. Flushes last around five minutes, but they can often be shorter. As you get older you will find that the flushes last longer. During a flush not only will you appear ‘redder’ but you also get a distinct feeling that your skin is very warm.
- The most common symptom of rosacea is a permanent redness in the face which is impossible to get rid of. In the early stages of rosacea the skin may appear fairly blotchy. However, as the condition gets worse, these small blotches start to join up and can affect the whole face! During the early stages of rosacea it is your cheeks that are most likely to be affected. From time to time you may find that the skin where it is red becomes dry, and perhaps even swollen.
- Rosacea is pretty much caused by inflamed blood vessels. You will be able to see these blood vessels on your skin as they become more damaged. Basically, you will be able to see the veins of your skin. At this point it is nigh on impossible to cover them up.
- One of the main reasons as to why Rosacea is often confused with acne is due to the formation of pustules and papules on the skin. Basically these are either pus-filled spots or small red bumps respectively. They often disappear as quickly as they appear. The key difference with acne spots is that the ones that appear as a result of rosacea will not scar.
- Sometimes you may have thicker skin, particularly around the nose area. This is very rare however and it is treatable.
- People with rosacea often experience severe eye irritation. This can take many forms. For example, you may feel as though something has gotten into your eye, your eyes may be dry, they may be bloodshot or you may be sensitive to light. If you experience either of these then it is worth getting checked out as it can lead to even more severe problems!
During the early stages of rosacea you may find that the symptoms come and go pretty quickly. As you get older though, and thus the condition more advanced, there will be some traces left over from the flare-ups. For example, you may have thicker skin, as mentioned previously, or your skin may be permanently blotchy. As mentioned above, there is no way to completely cure yourself from rosacea, and it is unlikely that there will be for the future, this is why it is important that you carry out a bit of research into ways in which you can ease the condition. I will not cover those here though.
There is no specific test that the doctor will be able to administer when diagnosing you with rosacea. It can easily be determined by looking at the symptoms that you are suffering from. As mentioned previously, the condition tends to be more prevalent amongst those that are over the age of thirty. It also appears to be women with fairer coloured skin who appear to be affected the most when it comes to the redness. However, when it comes to the thicker skin symptom it appears to be men who are affected the most, particularly around the nose. The condition is more common in those that have a history of rosacea in the family, and thus it is important that those people get checked out regularly.
If you believe that you are suffering from rosacea then it is important that you take a trip to your doctor as soon as possible. They will be able to diagnose the condition and start you off with a couple of treatment options.
Remember, this is one of the conditions where the earlier you start to treat it, the easier it is going to be to deal with! In fact, many people who visit the doctor find that they are able to control their rosacea to the point where it does not really pose a problem anymore. They will still suffer from flare-ups from time to time, however these flare-ups will not be as noticeable as without treatment. For more information on ‘what is rosacea’ please whatch this video:
National Rosacea Society: All about Rosacea
NHS: Rosacea Introduction