Suspect You Have Rosacea? 3 Types Of The Disorder And Redness Reducing Tips

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Rosacea can be a confusing skin disorder, because there are several types that all have slightly different symptoms. It often goes undiagnosed, because many people think that their faces have to be red all the time for them to truly have rosacea. The truth is that many rosacea sufferers only have occasional "flares" of the skin disorder and others have signs that look more like acne. Read on to learn about the three types of rosacea, their symptoms, and some tips for reducing redness.

The Three Types of Rosacea

While there are three main types of rosacea of the skin, called sub-types, don't worry if your symptoms don't fall into just one category. Many sufferers have symptoms of one or more sub-types, and that is normal.

Rosacea types include:

  1. Vascular Rosacea. This is the mildest form of the disorder, and it is also called pre-rosacea. Signs include a consistent redness in your skin or episodes of redness that seem to occur randomly.
  2. Inflammatory Rosacea: This is the type of rosacea that is mistaken most frequently for adult acne, because it causes skin bumps that may look similar to acne blemishes along with general redness.
  3. Advanced Rosacea: Also called phymatous rosacea, this type can develop once the disorder has progressed and is not controlled with medication. It is diagnosed when areas of skin begin thickening, especially the skin on the nose.

There is technically a fourth type of rosacea, but it affects only the eyes and is called ocular rosacea. It can occur along with rosacea and often occurs before rosacea skin symptoms begin developing.

Controlling Redness and Other Symptoms

The first and most important step to controlling your rosacea is to obtain an official diagnosis from a dermatologist. He or she can prescribe medications that are not available over the counter to help control redness and pustules. If you go without a proper diagnosis, you will never truly be sure what the cause of your skin problems are and may treat them with products that only make them worse.

Once you obtain a diagnosis and your dermatologist determines if you need prescription rosacea medication, such as metronidazole, antibiotics, or azelaic acid, here are some home-care tips to help lessen the redness and inflammation in your skin:

1. Find your triggers. Once you determine what your personal rosacea triggers are, you can take steps to avoid them whenever possible. The most common triggers include sun exposure, stress, heat, wind, and alcohol consumption. Wearing a mineral-based, broad-spectrum sunscreen can help your skin stay calm when you are out in the sun, which is the number-one rosacea trigger for many sufferers.

2. Try green tea skin-care products. Green tea has been proven to help reduce redness in rosacea sufferers, and many green tea skin-care products are affordable and easy to use. If you don't like heavy creams, you can find lightweight serums that contain green tea extract and even very light skin toners.

3. Skip the irritating exfoliants. Since rosacea stems from skin inflammation, you want to avoid anything that stimulates your skin too much, including harsh exfoliating scrubs. Also, be careful when trying products that contain glycolic acid and/or salicylic acid. Some rosacea sufferers have great success with them while others find that they are too harsh for their skin.

4. Avoid other irritants. Other common skin irritants you must avoid when you have rosacea include sodium lauryl sulfate, fragrance of any kind, and most essential oils. Remember that even natural products can be harsh, and essential oils contain volatile compounds that can be too rough on your delicate skin type.

If you suspect that you have rosacea, then visit a dermatologist for a diagnosis. You can start treatment to reduce skin redness and any other symptoms you have and follow these additional redness-reducing tips.