If you look like you're constantly blushing, chances are you may have a very common condition called "Rosacea."
Rosacea gives the appearance of persistent "flushed" cheeks or sunburn. It usually affects the center of the face, but can also affect the chin, forehead, ears, chest, and back. Over time, the redness becomes ruddier and visible blood vessels may appear.
Rosacea is a chronic condition that can be very disruptive. An estimated 14 million Americans are affected by at least one symptom of
Rosacea and many more are not aware that they have the condition.
Because the cause of Rosacea is not well understood, prevention of this problem is also not well understood. Rosacea may be inherited and therefore it may not be easy to prevent. However, people who have just started having
Rosacea, or who have a family history of Rosacea, should avoid any foods, drinks, or other irritants (such as sunburn) that cause facial flushing. Frequent facial flushing may cause
Rosacea to appear for the first time or to worsen.
Food & other Rosacea Triggers to AVOID
Some of the most common
- spicy foods
- heated beverages
- sun exposure
- hot or cold weather
- hot baths
- emotional stress
- heavy exercise
- certain skin care products
Rosacea family tree or... Is Rosacea
Although no scientific research has been performed on Rosacea and heredity,
there is evidence that suggests Rosacea may be inherited. According to the
National Rosacea Society nearly 40 percent of Rosacea patients surveyed said
they could name a relative who had similar symptoms.
In addition, there are strong signs that ethnicity is a factor in one's
potential to develop Rosacea. In a separate survey by the Society, 33 percent of
respondents reported having at least one parent of Irish heritage, and 27
percent had a parent of English descent. Other ethnic groups with elevated rates
of Rosacea include individuals
of Scandinavian, Scottish, Welsh or eastern European descent.
Causes of Rosacea
Sometimes, spicy foods or extreme temperature changes can aggravate or trigger
Rosacea. The actual cause of Rosacea is still not
scientifically known, however, the following are theories related to Rosacea:
The sebaceous glands have more sebum than normal, which
builds up on the skin and forms a flaky film (similar to cradle cap on
Rosacea might be related to how often and how intensely
people blush. When you blush, a large amount of blood flows through vessels
quickly, which causes those vessels to expand quickly to handle the flow. When
this occurs, the skin’s immune system tries to control this inflammation by
sending more blood supply to the area which can then cause broken blood
- Rosacea might be related to the bacteria known as
“Helicobacter Pylori.” This bacteria is known to be in the plaque residue
found on teeth but also has been found in the stomach where it might be the
cause of ulcers.
Symptoms of Rosacea
As the condition progresses, small pimples, which resemble
acne can develop, although the actual comedones (white or blackheads) do not
form. Other potential signs of Rosacea are burning or stinging of the face
accompanied by itching or a feeling of tightness.
Eye irritation gives the eyes the appearance of being
bloodshot or watery, a condition known as ocular Rosacea. Rosacea
should be treated, because as it worsens, the skin may thicken and enlarge from
excess tissue, most commonly on the nose. This more severe condition of Rosacea
is called “rhinophyma.”
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