Rosacea causes blood vessels to appear throughout the face visibly and often produces small, pus-filled bumps and exceeding redness. Often mistaken for skin conditions like acne, rosacea is a chronic inflammatory skin condition affecting the lives of 3 million people each year. This life-long condition can only be managed through medications and treatments, but some triggers can cause rosacea to become more severe for some people. Because this condition is hereditary and is typically influenced by our immune systems, many environmental factors could play a role in how your rosacea inflames and swells over time.
What Causes Rosacea Flare-Ups?
Rosacea is known to make the skin extremely sensitive to products, foods, and other environmental factors. People with this condition often experience flareups when they come into contact with these factors, and a rosacea flareup often produces uncomfortable experiences such as stinging, burning, itching, and inflammation. It can be difficult for people who have rosacea to track what causes these triggers, as triggers often differentiate from person to person. In many cases, too many triggers over time can cause the skin to stay redder longer and even stay permanently red. With these repeating flushes of redness and irritation, treatment may also become difficult to perform in some cases.
It’s important to understand what triggers affect your rosacea, as constant experiences with triggers can make treatments unreliable over time. Here are some common rosacea triggers that you can look for to help control your flareups:
- Diet: One of the biggest and most often recorded causes for rosacea flareups is your diet. Studies from the Dermatology Practical & Conceptual Journal cite that the microbiome can profoundly impact rosacea flareups, as the microbes within the digestive system help improve the immune system and the expressions of genes. The intestinal tract has been looked into to be used as a therapy for many skin conditions, including rosacea, although research on these topics is still limited.
- Sunlight: For others, exposure to sunlight over long periods can produce rosacea inflammation. Being outside in the midday sun can produce flushing and redness even for only a few minutes. During these moments, wearing sunscreen at 30 SPF or higher and wearing a wide-brimmed hat can help reduce your symptoms.
- Temperature: Being exposed to too much heat or cold from being outside can also affect your skin, so making sure you are maintaining the best, the most comfortable temperature can help reduce inflammation.
- Makeup: In some cases, products such as foundation, primers, and bronzers can cause your skin to become red due to how makeup often clogs up pores and make the skin pale and dry. If you plan to wear makeup, make sure to visit your dermatologist for better recommendations.
Protect Your Face From Rosacea Flare-Ups
One of the best habits you can do if you have severe symptoms is gathering evidence and keep track of what causes your flareups. If you are not sure of when your experience a trigger, you can keep a journal to track what products you’ve used, what activities you’ve done that day, and have a friend keep an eye on you to see when your rosacea flares up. If you’ve noticed that your symptoms appear more than usual, then it’s time to see a dermatologist for treatment.