At Coastal Dermatology and Medspa, our priority is to deliver quality dermatology care to informed patients in a comfortable and convenient setting.
Rosacea is more than a red face. Though it often starts as a tendency to blush or flush more easily than other people, the redness can slowly spread and become more persistent. People with rosacea may eventually have permanent redness in the center of their face. Visible blood vessels may appear. Skin can thicken. Even the eyes may be affected.
Without treatment, rosacea can worsen and become more difficult to control. The most reliable way to manage this chronic disorder is to see a board-certified dermatologist who can evaluate the condition and develop a treatment program that works best for your individual case. Request a consultation with Dr. Sanjiva Goyal here.
What Causes Rosacea?
Scientists are still trying to distinguish the specific causes of rosacea. Anyone — regardless of age, gender, ethnicity or skin color — can have rosacea, but people with certain risk factors are more likely to get it:
- Fair skin (often with blonde hair and blue eyes)
- Between the ages of 30 and 50
- Northern European or Eastern European ancestry
- Family history of rosacea or severe acne
- Personal history of severe acne (including cysts or nodules)
Women are more likely than men to get rosacea, but men are more likely than women to get severe rosacea. Rosacea appears to run in families, which suggests that people may inherit genes for the condition. Scientists also believe that an immune system overreaction, demodex mites that live on everyone’s skin and a bug that causes intestine infections may be contributing factors.
How Common Is Rosacea?
According to data assembled by the American Academy of Dermatology, rosacea affects 16 million Americans. Despite its prevalence, a National Rosacea Society survey found that 95% of patients knew little or nothing about the condition's signs and symptoms before their diagnosis.
Other surveys from the NRS found that nearly 90% of rosacea patients said the condition lowered their confidence and self-esteem, and 41% reported that they had avoided public contact or canceled social engagements as a result. Fortunately, there is good news: over 70% reported that medical treatment improved their emotional and social well-being.
Do You Have to Treat Rosacea?
There is no known cure for rosacea, but treatment can help you manage it. Many people find that living with rosacea becomes much easier when they take steps to keep the condition under control. They say that they look better, have fewer symptoms and feel more comfortable. They also report improved mental health thanks to a reduction in feelings of depression, anxiety and social isolation.
Treating rosacea is also important because it helps prevent the condition from worsening. If rosacea progresses, it can lead to eye problems, including blurred vision and reduced eyesight. Don’t wait to see a dermatologist until your rosacea becomes unbearable. The earlier you begin treatment, the easier rosacea is to manage.
How Is Rosacea Managed at Home?
Learning how to care for your skin at home is a critical part of rosacea treatment. Many skincare products and habits can irritate skin with rosacea or cause rosacea to flare. Use gentle products with mild ingredients and avoid harshly rubbing or scrubbing your skin.
Be diligent about sun protection. Skin with rosacea is often extra sensitive to the sun, so do your best to apply a broad-spectrum sunscreen with a minimum SPF of 30 daily, seek shade when outdoors, avoid the intense midday sun and wear wide-brimmed hats and other protective clothing.
Identify the triggers that cause your rosacea to flare. Common rosacea triggers include intense hot or cold temperatures, spicy foods, alcohol, fragrance in skincare products and makeup, stress, exercise, hot beverages and certain medications. Once you know your triggers, you can limit your exposure to them.
How Is Rosacea Treated by a Medical Professional?
Your first visit to Coastal Dermatology and Medspa will be a consultation. During this appointment, Dr. Goyal will examine your skin, ask questions about your symptoms and determine whether rosacea is the correct diagnosis. He will also let you know what type of rosacea you have.
Once you have a diagnosis, Dr. Goyal will talk with you about treatment options. Your rosacea treatment plan will likely involve a combination of lifestyle modifications and medical treatments tailored to your specific symptoms.
While your rosacea treatment is in progress, you may return for routine follow-up appointments to ensure you can sustain the improvements in your skin over the long term.
Treating Rosacea With Prescription Topicals
Many patients benefit from topically applied medications to manage the signs and symptoms of rosacea. Topical drugs that reduce redness include brimonidine and oxymetazoline, which work by temporarily constricting blood vessels. Other topical products help control the pimples associated with rosacea. These drugs include metronidazole, ivermectin, azelaic acid and retinoids.
Topical therapy can control rosacea on a long-term basis, typically without loss of effectiveness.
Treating Rosacea With Oral Medication
Oral antibiotics can be helpful in treating rosacea symptoms that are resistant to topical medications. Dermatologists have prescribed tetracycline to patients with rosacea for over 50 years. Other antibiotics, such as doxycycline or erythromycin, can also improve redness and acne-like breakouts associated with rosacea.
Isotretinoin, which is primarily used to treat severe acne, can occasionally be an option for rosacea patients. This is only prescribed for severe rosacea that doesn't respond to other therapies.
Antibiotics are generally only used to get rosacea under control. Once the condition is managed, most patients switch to another treatment to maintain results.
Treating Rosacea With Lasers and Lights
Laser or light therapies can help reduce redness and acne-like breakouts and remove visible blood vessels. Some patients see a considerable clearing of their redness that lasts for years, while others see a smaller, but still impactful, reduction. Most patients need a series of these treatments to achieve optimal results.
Vascular lasers are commonly used to eliminate spider veins and reduce diffuse redness. These lasers emit wavelengths of light that target and heat unwanted blood vessels, causing them to disintegrate.
IPL (intense pulsed light) therapy, also referred to as photorejuvenation or photofacial, uses short waves of intense light to treat the redness and flushing component of rosacea. Sessions are quick with no downtime and minimal side effects.
Clear Your Complexion With Coastal Dermatology and Medspa
At Coastal Dermatology and Medspa, Dr. Goyal and his team understand that rosacea can make you feel less confident in your appearance and have an impact on your emotional well-being. We can work with you to develop an individualized treatment plan to manage the symptoms of rosacea so you can feel at ease in your skin.
Call our Jacksonville office at 904-727-9123 or our location in Ponte Vedra Beach at 904-567-1050 to request a consultation. With patience and the guidance of a board-certified dermatologist, you can get your rosacea under control.