Rosacea (rose-AY-sha) is a common skin disease, and it often begins with a tendency to blush or flush more easily than other people. The redness can slowly spread beyond the nose and cheeks to the forehead and chin. Sometimes the ears, chest, and back can be red all the time. This skin problem can cause more than redness, and it is important to know the many signs and symptoms. There are four subtypes:
• Erythematotelangiectatic rosacea: Redness, flushing, visible blood vessels.
• Papulopustular rosacea: Red, swelling, and acne-like breakouts.
• Phymatous rosacea: Skin thickens and has a bumpy texture.
• Ocular rosacea: Eyes red and irritated, eyelids can be swollen, may have what looks like a sty. Some people see permanent redness in the center of their face. It is not uncommon for a person to have a mask like redness on the face and the redness may get worse with certain facial treatments.
There are 3 Different Symptoms of Rosacea:
- Spider like blood vessels that creep across the skin of the cheeks
- acne like breakouts
- thickening of the skin, particularly around the nose.
Rosacea can affect more than the skin and eyes. It is a chronic (long-lasting) skin disease, and it can reduce a person’s quality of life. Many people report problems at work, in their marriage, and with meeting new people. Surveys and studies report that living with the redness can cause:
- Feelings of frustration and embarrassment: In surveys conducted by the National Rosacea Society (NRS), 41 percent said it caused them to avoid public contact or cancel social engagements.
- Worry: People worry that it will get worse or cause scars. People worry about side effects from medicine used to treat it.
- Low self-esteem: Surveys conducted by the NRS found that almost 70 percent of people living with rosacea said that the condition lowered their self-confidence and self-esteem.
- Work-related problems: Surveys conducted by the NRS find that when it is severe, 70 percent of people say the disease affects their interactions at work. Nearly 30 percent say that red breakouts cause them to miss work.
- Anxiety and depression: Living with a skin condition that flares unexpectedly can cause people to believe you have a drinking problem. This can cause anxiety and depression.
Treatment ranges from topical medications, oral medications and laser treatments, and can improve the skin's appearance and improve a person’s quality of life. Studies show that when people have fewer visual symptoms, their quality of life improves. Learn more about Rosacea here.