The Most Up-to-Date Treatment Options for Rosacea
As we learn more about rosacea, a common skin condition that causes chronic red flushing, the ways in which we approach its treatment continue to advance. Although the exact causes of this condition are still unknown, we do know that genetics, environmental triggers, inflammation, and even certain microscopic organisms can all contribute to rosacea. Additionally, this condition has been linked with an increased risk for various underlying health concerns, including heart disease, diabetes, and gastrointestinal disease (National Rosacea Society).
Fortunately, there are a number of ways that you can better manage both superficial and underlying symptoms. Take a look at some of the most effective tips and treatment options for anyone struggling with rosacea.
1. Avoid Triggers
Rosacea symptoms tend to appear in flares, which are often triggered by certain environmental conditions. You can help to reduce the number and severity of flare-ups you have by avoiding the triggers that cause them. According to the National Rosacea Society, some of the most common rosacea triggers include:
- Sun exposure
- Dramatic temperature changes
- Intense exercise
- Spicy foods
- Hot beverages like coffee, tea, and hot chocolate
- Changes in hormone levels
2. Eat Anti-Inflammatory Foods
Since rosacea is linked with chronic inflammation, adjusting your diet to include plenty of anti-inflammatory food can help to minimize redness and flushing. Foods like salmon, flaxseed oil, nuts, seeds, and fresh fruits and vegetables are great items to add to your regular diet (Everyday Health).
In addition, try to avoid foods and drinks that can worsen your symptoms, including spicy foods, coffee, alcohol, eggplant, and tomatoes. You can find a detailed list of foods to avoid on the National Rosacea Society’s website.
Soolantra® (1% ivermectin) is a topical treatment option for rosacea. It works by helping to calm inflammation, as well as acting as an anti-parasitic agent against the Demodex mite that is believed to be linked with rosacea symptoms. Even though this microscopic mite is present on everyone’s skin, whether you have rosacea or not, Demodex tends to be present in higher numbers on skin with rosacea.
Rhofade™ (1% oxymetazoline hydrochloride) is one of the newest prescription rosacea treatments currently available. It works by shrinking the blood vessels that cause facial flushing and redness to minimize these symptoms. Clinical trials for Rhofade™ found that these results can last up to 12 hours, so you only need to apply this cream once in the morning in order to achieve all-day relief from redness.
Metrogel® (1% metronidazole) is a prescription topical antibiotic with anti-inflammatory properties to help treat bumps and blemishes associated with rosacea. This product contains a combination of three science-backed ingredients to help enhance the absorption rate of the active ingredient, while simultaneously helping your skin to seal in moisture.
Oracea® (doxycycline) is an oral antibiotic that has been shown to effectively treat the small pustules, or bumps, that often accompany the facial redness associated with rosacea. It is important to note, though, that this treatment has not been shown to reduce signs of redness or flushing.
7. See Your Dermatologist
Because rosacea can be such a complex condition to treat, your best bet is to discuss the various treatment options with your dermatologist, who can provide an accurate diagnosis and prescribe the most appropriate medications for your situation. Since many of the treatments listed above do require a prescription, the first step to better managing your rosacea symptoms is to schedule an appointment with your dermatologist.
If you don’t currently have a dermatologist, you can find an STS-approved derm in your area by clicking here. For more information about rosacea, its triggers, and how to treat it, take a look at our past blog posts on dealing with rosacea in warm weather, ocular rosacea, and the four subtypes of rosacea.
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.