Dr Lisa Chan explains how to minimize the effects of rosacea

The debilitating skin condition known as rosacea is most prevalent at this time of year. Although there is no magic formula, Dr. Lisa Chan suggests several ways to minimize its effect.

The summer blues are a real dilemma for people with rosacea, a debilitating skin condition that causes facial redness and blemishes. This is the season when sufferers feel its effects most intensely, with a combination of heat and the requirement to wear face masks making the condition particularly uncomfortable.

The causes of rosacea are poorly understood. People with the condition often experience persistent redness in the center of the face, redness, burning or stinging sensations and dryness of the skin, and it can also affect the eyes and vision of sufferers. Four “S” factors exacerbate rosacea: sunlight, spicy food, stress and alcoholic beverages.

Non-drug rosacea treatments fall into two categories:

  • Avoid rosacea triggers: gentle skin care, avoiding harsh rubbing, frequent moisturizing and sun protection.
  • Pulsed Dye Laser (PDL) and Intense Pulsed Light (IPL) treatments, which work by absorbing light energy into the skin vessels – the small blood vessels in the skin – causing the vessels to heat up and coagulate. This can lead to a reduction in facial redness and vessel damage.

Medication options for rosacea treatment, on the other hand, include topical antibiotics, azelaic acid, brimonidine, the antiparasitic drug ivermectin, and oral medications – oral antibiotics and isotretinoin for the treatment of rosacea. acne.

Oral antibiotics such as tetracycline, doxycycline, and minocycline have long been used to treat and manage rosacea. Thanks to their anti-inflammatory properties, they can be effective in treating papules and pustules on the skin and reducing erythema – rashes caused by injured or inflamed blood capillaries.

However, tetracycline can cause gastrointestinal upset and photosensitivity, and should not be given to children under the age of nine, as it may permanently discolor teeth and reduce bone growth. Side effects of isotretinoin, meanwhile, include dry skin, chapped lips, vision problems, and joint pain. In severe cases, it can cause birth defects, stomach problems, and mental health issues.

In summary, no single therapy in the treatment of rosacea is consistently effective, and the potential side effects of any medication should be carefully considered before being prescribed.

Here are some tips to reduce its cruel impact in summer:

  • Use a misting fan.
  • Wear a hat.
  • Stay out of the sun from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., when ultraviolet light is most intense.
  • Apply sunscreen.
  • Avoid warming up with prolonged exercise, such as swimming or doing aerobics in an air-conditioned space rather than doing intense workouts in a gym.
  • Keep a rosacea diary to monitor seasonal and lifestyle factors that cause your own flare-ups.
  • Be careful with cosmetics and avoid skincare products that agitate your condition.

The truth that sufferers have to face, however, is that rosacea is a chronic condition with no instant magic cure. Patience and compliance remain key to successfully treating rosacea. A combination of good skin care, avoidance of triggers, and carefully evaluated treatments can help reduce flare-ups.

About Sally Dominguez

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