Rosacea is a long-term skin condition that can be controlled to some extent but can’t be completely cured. In 2011, one study found that almost half of UK adults reported symptoms of rosacea to their doctor and although it normally occurs after the age of 30, Dr Tabi Leslie, London dermatologist and spokesperson for the British Skin Foundation, says that there has been a rise in younger patients.
Celebrities with rosacea include Cynthia Nixon, Sam Smith and Prince William and the chronic skin condition affects almost half of us – often getting worse in winter – but what exactly is it?
Musician, Sam Smith told US Weekly that he too suffers with rosacea while it has been rumored that Cameron Diaz and Renee Zellweger have it too. Prince William could have inherited the condition from his late Mother, Princess Diana.
Typically, rosacea affects the face and can be characterized by flare-ups and redness on the cheeks, nose, chin and forehead. If left untreated, bumps and pimples can develop, and in severe cases, the nose may grow swollen and bulbous.
What causes rosacea?
Although it is common that rosacea runs in families, Dr Tabi confirms that a genetic link hasn’t been established and instead, rosacea is much more associated with environmental and lifestyle factors.
Lex Gillies blamed her flare ups on her party lifestyle while she was at university, but soon she realised that they would occur daily, while Cynthia Nixon noted that her triggers were exercise, red wine and spicy food.
‘We’re not sure why, but rosacea is made worse by red wine, spirits, caffeinated drinks and spicy foods,’ says Dr Tabi, ‘all of those are on the increase along with increased exposure to other rosacea triggers such as sunlight.’
How can I treat it?
Currently there is no permanent cure for rosacea, but there are plenty of ways you can keep it under control.
If you find that you’re flushing a lot or your skin is staying red between flushing episodes then your GP can prescribe an anti-inflammatory ointment called azelaic acid or antibiotics called tratracyclines that work in lower doses to reduce the inflammation.
Additionally, a new drug called bromonidine was licensed earlier this year and it is the first prescription treatment that targets skin redness of rosacea. It restricts the dilation of blood vessels that cause redness and the effects last 12 hours.
Laser treatments are also available to help control rosacea. They work as the light travels through the skin and is converted in to heat, clotting the blood and destroying visible blood vessels. If laser treatments and medication aren’t the route you want to take to help your rosacea, then there are cosmetic treatments you can try.
Source: 5 celebrities you didn’t know have rosacea plus 5 products to help – Healthista