Rosacea Management

By: Vivacare - Dr. Mark Becker

The chronic, relapsing nature of rosacea makes it a particularly vexing disorder to keep under control. Flare-ups, seemingly unpredictable, can be stressful.

Key steps for preventing or minimizing rosacea flare-ups include the following:

  • Identify your rosacea triggers. People with rosacea respond differently (or not at all) to different potential rosacea triggers. It may take some time to determine what your personal triggers are. Many people find it helpful to keep a rosacea diary to track food intake, activities, weather, and other factors that may cause flare-ups. You and your doctor can use the diary to discuss what to do to control your symptoms.
  • Protect your skin from the sun and moisturize during cold and windy weather. Other rosacea skin care tips are important to follow, such as avoiding harsh ingredients in skin care products and choosing make up wisely.
  • Avoid consuming foods and liquids that make you flush. Spicy food is often reported to lead to rosacea flare-ups, but alcoholic beverages and even smoking can cause flushing too. Other possible food triggers include processed food, MSG, cayenne and red pepper, curry, chili powder, vinegar, soy sauce, and dairy products. If you consume something that causes you to flush, note it in your rosacea diary and try to avoid it in the future. Consider non-alcoholic drinks if alcohol makes you flush.
  • Try to manage body heat generated during exercise.
  • Try to control stress by getting sufficient sleep and implementing other relaxation techniques.

Take Your Rosacea Medication

While remembering to take your rosacea medication every day is often no problem during a flare-up, you may be tempted to stop taking it or forget to take it if your symptoms clear up. However, your medication is an important key to getting and keeping your rosacea under control, and if you stop taking it, you could see a return of symptoms. Your doctor may prescribe a medication for many months at a time, making it important to take it as long as directed.

If you find yourself forgetting to take your medication, try these tips:

  • Keep your medication near your toothbrush, so you remember to take it when you brush your teeth.
  • Put a few pills or an extra tube of topical medication in your purse or backpack so you can take it later in the day if you forget before leaving the house.
  • Keep your medication on your nightstand.
  • If you use a computer every day, set up a daily reminder.
  • Ask your spouse, a family member, or a friend to remind you.
  • Set a daily reminder on your watch alarm.