A red face can be an endearing sign of embarrassment, but when it’s a stubborn dermatological problem that worsens over time, the consequences to one’s morale are far from endearing.
Rosacea is a condition entailing the appearance of red areas on the nose, chin and cheeks. This condition most commonly affects women between the ages of 30 and 50, as well as people with fair skin and light-colored eyes.
What causes it? Is there a cure? If so, what? Discover the causes, treatments and ways to prevent rosacea.
What exactly is rosacea?
Rosacea is the final—and most severe—stage of a vascular anomaly that presents itself in the form of a skin condition, specifically, persistent redness. These unsightly blemishes get worse until they develop into permanently dilated blood vessels and red spots that tend to appear on the cheeks and on the wings of the nose. They’re generally accompanied by a sensation of warmth and burning, as well as eye irritation that’s similar to the symptoms of conjunctivitis. Pustules and inflammation may complete this rather unappealing picture.
Rosacea is the second stage of the condition, which begins with simple redness. Redness is always the result of dilated blood vessels, but not to the same extent as full-blown rosacea. However, simple redness caused by normal dilation of the blood vessels underneath the skin could be the first stage.
While this dermatological problem may be hereditary, certain factors, including stress, hormonal changes, temperature fluctuations, exposure to the sun, the use of corticosteroids and the consumption of hot drinks, spices and alcohol, can exacerbate the problem. In short, no one is truly immune.
Nevertheless, there are certain precautions you can take to ward off the appearance of rosacea and prevent it from getting worse. When it comes to possible treatments, one of the most highly recommended cosmetic procedures is intense pulsed light (IPL) therapy.
Treating rosacea with IPL
In the case of facial rosacea (on the nose or cheeks), it’s advisable to consult a dermatologist to find out what treatments are available to you. However, the use of an IPL device is a tried-and-true treatment. The pigments and blood vessels of the skin absorb the light energy produced by the IPL device, transforming that energy into heat. The result is a reduction in dilated blood vessels, leading to decreased redness.
Depending on the person, it will take one or more sessions—generally spaced out over several weeks—for this method to achieve its full effectiveness. Although the side effects (temporary redness, swelling and changes in pigmentation) are relatively minimal and short-lived, it’s crucial to protect your skin from the sun by avoiding direct exposure as much as possible and using a broad-spectrum sunscreen whenever you are outdoors during daylight hours.
What about the results?
They’re truly significant; however, you’ll need regular follow-up treatments—about once a year—to keep this vascular anomaly under control.
Before and after rosacea treatment on the nose
Before and after a single IPL rosacea treatment on the face (nose and cheeks)
Preventing the onset of rosacea
Whether you’re worried about developing this condition or you’re already suffering from the symptoms, you’ll be happy to know that there are certain actions you can take in your daily life to prevent it from appearing or getting worse. These include the following:
- Avoiding prolonged exposure to the sun, especially between the hours of 11:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m.
- Avoiding saunas and hot baths
- Limiting your consumption of hot drinks, alcohol and spicy foods
- Protecting your face in cold weather and washing it with warm water rather than hot water
- Avoiding stressful situations as much as possible
- Refraining from using overly greasy creams
- Informing yourself regarding the vasodilating effects of certain medications
Where to receive treatment for facial rosacea (on the nose and cheeks)
At the Dr. Mario F. Bernier Aesthetic Surgery and Medicine Clinic, we’re particularly renowned for our mastery of IPL photo facial treatments. Our clients value our incomparable expertise and human approach in the often-misunderstood field of cosmetic surgery. You’ll feel reassured and confident, knowing what to expect from your potential cosmetic procedure.
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- Journal des Femmes. Couperose (rosacée) : quels sont les traitements efficaces ? [Rosacea: what are the effective treatments?] 2023.
- Hellocare. Couperose et rosacée, deux stades d’une même maladie de peau [Redness and rosacea, two stages of the same skin condition]. 2022.