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Rosacea is a common skin condition causing redness or flushness of the face. Patients often interpret the signs for sunburn at first. The average person takes years to get a proper diagnosis. Over 16 million Americans suffer from rosacea, with millions more possibly undiagnosed. What are the signs to look for?
Although anyone can get rosacea, the condition appears most commonly in men and women over the age of 30. Rosacea can look like a sunburn at first. Patches of flushed skin appear on the cheeks, nose, or forehead. The patches appear and disappear almost without warning, becoming larger and appearing for longer over time.
If ignored, pus-filled bumps appear on the cheeks, nose, face, and forehead. Rosacea can even affect the eyes. Rosacea sufferers also often mistake the itchy eyes and cheeks for an allergic reaction. Because symptoms are subtle at first, knowing the warning signs can be difficult. Take a trip to the dermatologist for the following clues.
The first sign of rosacea is tiny blood vessels appearing on the cheeks. Blood vessels are hard to see at first. Over time, the vessels become more prominent and stick around longer. A flushed face with visible red blood vessels should be a cause for alarm. Are the signs coming and going quickly without warning? Then head to the dermatologist.
Early signs of rosacea bring tiny pimples on the cheeks and forehead. The first instinct? Reaching for a bit of acne cream. But if the skin is not usually acne-prone, consider an assessment for rosacea. Assess current medication to determine if acne is a side effect. If all is clear and the acne brings scratching and irritation, see a doctor quickly.
No explanation for burning or itchy eyes? Symptoms of rosacea include dry, irritated eyes. The eyes will often even look like there are tiny blood vessels running through. If dry eyes were never an issue in the past, check for the additional warning signs of rosacea.
High-stress situations cause rosacea flare-ups. Experienced a few sticky situations recently? Are friends and family commenting about a flushed face? Review when the redness happened, the circumstances, and the length of time. The signs could point to rosacea flare-ups.
Is the nose rosy red and sensitive to the touch? A swollen nose is a possible sign of rosacea. If the sore nose comes with red cheeks or forehead, talk with a dermatologist. In advanced stages of this condition, the tissue on the nose becomes thicker, especially in men.
Signs are small and appear trivial at first. Take the signs of rosacea seriously. Many Americans are unaware of rosacea and interpret the signs as stress. If the symptoms mentioned show up frequently, see a dermatologist. Rosacea has no cure and the effects can even be psychological. However, the quicker a dermatologist gets involved, the more manageable symptoms are. Dermatologists can provide medication and recommend lifestyle changes to keep rosacea in check.