How to Enjoy Summer Fun while Managing Rosacea
For the millions of Americans with rosacea, the warmer summer months can be a challenge, as the sun, warm temperatures, and even some popular summer foods can be triggers for rosacea symptoms. If you’re having trouble managing these symptoms, which typically present as red, flushed skin and small pimple-like bumps, here are a few tips you can keep in mind to help you enjoy summer fun while maintaining clear, healthy-looking skin.
Be Diligent about Sunscreen Use
It’s important for everyone, no matter their skin type or tone, to wear sunscreen. However, it is especially important for those with rosacea to be diligent about sun protection, especially in the hot summer months. According to the National Rosacea Society, about 61% of rosacea sufferers report sun exposure as their number-one trigger for flare-ups, so be sure to wear SPF of at least 15 every single day, and reapply it every two hours or after swimming. Rosacea sufferers often have burning or stinging after applying sunscreen. This is due to the chemical sunscreens. Avobenzone is the sunscreen ingredient that causes burning of the eyes and face in most rosacea patients. It is better to choose a physical sunscreen. Most of my rosacea patients prefer a tinted physical sunscreen to cover their pink skin. Protect your face from the sun as much as you can by standing in the shade when possible. It is also a good idea to wear a sunhat or other type of hat with a visor to help keep your face shaded from the sun.
Over half of those with rosacea find that hot weather is also a tripwire for red flushing of the skin (National Rosacea Society). To help combat this, take steps to stay cool when spending time outdoors in warm weather. Bring a spray bottle filled with cool water to spritz on your skin when you begin to feel hot and flushed. You can also bring along plenty of cool nonalcoholic drinks to sip on, or even chew on ice. If you plan to be outside in hot weather for a long period of time, bring an umbrella for shade or take a break in a cool, shady area throughout the day to help keep your skin calm and clear. Avoid steam rooms and saunas and do not let them steam your face if you get a facial.
Exercise During Cooler Times of Day
Exercise is another common cause of red, flushed skin, so if this is a trigger for you, it can be a good idea to save your workout for the early morning or late evening if you plan to exercise outside. The sun’s rays are at their strongest during the hours of about 10am to 4pm every day, so scheduling your workout to avoid these times can help to keep your body and skin cool. Whether exercising indoors or outdoors, you should be prepared with a cool, wet towel or washcloth to put around your neck or on your forehead if you feel yourself becoming flushed and hot. You can also try working out in shorter intervals throughout the day instead of one longer workout.
Watch Out for Summer Foods that May Trigger Rosacea Flare-Ups
Many people are surprised to find that some popular summer foods like spicy barbeque, tomatoes, and citrus fruits can lead to a flare-up of rosacea. If you discover that these foods tend to be triggers for you, try to avoid them whenever possible. Alcohol is also a common rosacea trigger. If you want to enjoy a glass of wine or a beer, talk to your doctor about the most effective medications that can help to calm your symptoms so that they don’t get in the way of your life.
Talk to Your Doctor about New Treatment Options
Beginning on May 1, 2017, RHOFADE™, a new topical prescription rosacea treatment, will be available through your doctor. Clinical trials for RHOFADE™ showed that most participants saw a two-grade improvement in redness, flushing, and other symptoms associated with rosacea. Further, these helpful effects can last up to 12 hours, so you don’t have to worry about reapplying RHOFADE™ throughout the day (Allergan™). RHOFADE™ can be an appropriate treatment option for nearly anyone struggling to manage symptoms of rosacea. For more information, talk to your doctor, or visit www.RHOFADE.com. To learn more about rosacea and it symptoms, watch the Skin Type Solutions® video.
Dr. Leslie Baumann, M.D. and her team at Baumann Cosmetic Dermatology believe in proof, not promises. World-recognized for both cosmetic and general dermatology, our treatment strategies rely exclusively on evidence-based, scientifically verified products and procedures that promote skin health and a natural appearance. We combine effective medical procedures with individualized instruction on proper skincare, nutrition, supplementation and lifestyle in order to maximize the health of the skin and body as a whole while minimizing the effects of aging. For more, visit Dr. Baumann’s blog for daily updates Monday through Friday, or inquire about an appointment through Derm.net.