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Rosacea is one of the most common skin conditions that people face, but its cause and treatment can be confusing. That’s why we’re here to help answer your questions and make managing rosacea as easy as possible.
Rosacea is a chronic inflammatory skin condition that affects an estimated 15 million people in the U.S. alone. It causes redness and inflammation on the face, neck, and chest and while the exact cause is still a mystery, we know genetics play a significant role in determining whether someone will have rosacea. In general, women tend to have rosacea more often than men, usually beginning in their 30s. Those with lighter complexions are also more prone to getting rosacea.
Based on some of the symptoms, such as pimple-like bumps, many people wonder if rosacea is a type of acne. Unlike acne, rosacea isn’t caused by oil overproduction or clogged pores. That said, some people can experience both rosacea and acne at the same time.
What does rosacea look like? Usually, rosacea resembles a red rash. Signs of rosacea include bumps, inflammation, swelling, and/or a burning sensation. In rare cases, the skin on the nose thickens, causing it to appear bulbous. Some people with rosacea may also experience red, swollen eyelids or fine, red vascular lines.
There are four different types of rosacea skin, each with its own distinct characteristics:
We all have tiny blood vessels under our skin’s surface that are part of our vascular system. With rosacea, the blood vessels overcompensate when reacting to different triggers, which can vary from cold weather or sun exposure to spicy food or one too many cocktails at happy hour. These triggers cause excess flushing and a rosacea breakout.
Like acne, rosacea has no cure and, as a result, can be frustrating. But getting a diagnosis and an effective treatment from a dermatologist can go a long way toward controlling the condition and providing a sense of relief.
Avoiding triggers like the sun, spicy foods, and alcohol is one of the best ways to help with flare-ups. What triggers one person might not trigger another, so it can take a bit of trial and error to discover what’s causing your rosacea and how best to manage the condition.
Luckily, some general rosacea skincare tips can help you manage your condition: