If your face looks like you're blushing and you get bumps that are a bit like acne, you might have a skin condition called rosacea.

Causes of Rosacea

Doctors don’t know exactly what causes rosacea. A few things that may play a role are:

Your genes

Rosacea often runs in families.

Blood vessel trouble

The redness on your skin might be due to problems with blood vessels in your face. Sun damage could cause them to get wider, which makes it easier for other people to see them.


They’re tiny insects. A type called Demodex folliculorum normally lives on your skin and usually isn’t harmful. Some people, though, have a heightened sensitivity to the mites, or more of these bugs than usual.. Too many mites could irritate your skin.


A type called H. pylori normally lives in your gut. Some studies suggest this germ can raise the amount of a digestive hormone called gastrin, which might cause your skin to look flushed.

Some things about you may make you more likely to get rosacea. For instance, your chances of getting the skin condition go up if you:

  • Have light skin, blonde hair, and blue eyes

  • Are between ages 30 and 50

  • Are a woman

  • Have family members with rosacea

  • Had severe acne

  • Smoke

Symptoms of Rosacea

The biggest thing you’ll notice is redness on your cheeks, nose, chin, and forehead. Less often, the color can appear on your neck, head, ears, or chest.

After a while, broken blood vessels might show through your skin, which can thicken and swell up. Up to half of people with rosacea also get eye problems like redness, swelling, and pain.

Other symptoms you may get are:

  • Stinging and burning of your skin

  • Patches of rough, dry skin

  • A swollen, bulb-shaped nose

  • Larger pores

  • Broken blood vessels on your eyelids

  • Bumps on your eyelids

  • Problems with seeing

Diagnosis of Rosacea

  • Rosacea is diagnosed by examining the skin on your face.

  • The presence of enlarged blood vessels will distinguish it from other skin disorders.

  • Early diagnosis and treatment is important to control rosacea and prevent its progression.

Treatment of Rosacea

  • There is no cure for rosacea. The primary goal of treatment is to control the redness, inflammation, and skin eruptions.

  • The biggest key to controlling rosacea is to avoid triggers factors that cause the skin to flush.

  • Common triggers include sun exposure, very hot or very cold weather, alcohol, very hot foods, spicy foods, intense exercise, and stress.

  • In addition, menopause and some drugs may cause flushing. To help identify your triggers, keep a diary of when symptoms appear, what you were doing, the environmental conditions, and what you think may have brought on your symptoms.

  • Discuss this with your doctor.

  • Proper skin care can also help.

  • Use very mild skin cleansers and high-quality, oil-free cosmetics and moisturizers to help prevent irritation.

  • Also, use a sunscreen with broad spectrum coverage (SPF 30 or higher for UVB protection and zinc oxide, titanium dioxide, or avobenzone for UVA protection) to help prevent symptoms triggered by sunlight.

In addition, dermatologists commonly prescribe topical creams, lotions, ointments, gels, foams, or pads, such as:

  • Azelaic acid (Azelex and Finacea)

  • Brimonidine (Mirvaso)

  • Clindamycin (Cleocin, Clindagel, and ClindaMax)

  • Erythromycin (Erygel)

  • Ivermectin (Soolantra)

  • Metronidazole (MetroCream or MetroGel)

  • Oxymetazoline (Rhofade)

  • Sodium sulfacetamide and sulfur (Avar, Sulfacet, Clenia and Plexion)

diseases treatments health rosacea prevention integumentary-system disorders

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