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Rosacea is a chronic disease of the skin that causes inflammation, redness, bumps, pimples, and skin thickening. The characteristic skin inflammation of rosacea most often occurs on the face, though it can also occur on other parts of the upper body.
According to the National Rosacea Society, rosacea affects more than 16 million Americans and typically develops between the ages of 30 and 50. With successful treatment, rosacea symptoms can be significantly reduced. If left untreated, the disease can cause lasting damage to the skin.
The exact cause of rosacea is still unknown. According to the American Academy of Dermatology, the following are some of the leading theories on the causes of rosacea:
The following factors can affect your risk of developing rosacea:
Rosacea is diagnosed with a simple examination by a dermatologist. During this examination, the dermatologist will examine all areas of the skin as well as ask for a personal and family medical history to help rule out other causes of the symptoms.
Symptoms of rosacea include:
Though rosacea cannot be cured, most cases of the disease can be controlled with proper treatment. Early detection and treatment is crucial to properly controlling the symptoms, which can worsen overtime and cause permanent damage to the skin if left untreated.
The skin irritation caused by rosacea can be disruptive to daily life. The following tips can help you control your symptoms and make life with rosacea easier:
Rosacea is not a disease that is regularly screened for. If you experience any of the symptoms of rosacea, contact your doctor. He or she will be able to determine the cause of your symptoms.
In many cases, rosacea is not entirely avoidable. However, there are a number of factors that can trigger or worsen rosacea symptoms. If you already suffer from rosacea, limiting your exposure to the following factors can help prevent flare-ups.
According to the National Rosacea Society, the following are the most common rosacea triggers:
Rosacea symptoms are most often treated with topical or oral medications, or a combination of both. Your doctor can help you find the right treatment based on the type and severity of your symptoms.
Treatment for facial redness includes:
Treatment for skin thickening includes:
The following are alternative and complementary treatments for rosacea symptoms. Talk to your doctor before trying any of these methods, as they lack clinical study data and are not FDA approved treatment methods for rosacea.
If you think you are experiencing any of the symptoms of rosacea, schedule an appointment with your doctor or dermatologist.
If you are currently being treated for rosacea and experience any of the following symptoms, call your doctor:
You may want to ask your doctor the following questions about your condition:
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