Rosacea- What Is It?
Rosacea is a common but little-known disorder. Rosacea can be controlled, managed and improved with proper treatment methods, however there is no specific or long term cure.
The first step in determining what treatment will work is to understand this skin condition and outbreak triggers.
It is inflammation of the skin, resulting in facial redness, vasculation of blood vessels, swelling and papules. Symptoms can vary in intensity when exacerbated. Recent research has shown an increase of specific inflammatory cells, triggering a chain of chemical responses within the skin, including the release of certain enzymes (MMPs). These MMPs cause a decline in collagen and cause inflammatory damage, which results in what is called “acne rosacea”.
Other inflammatory mediators that further exacerbate the symptoms of rosacea are reactive oxygen species (ROS) and nitric oxide (NO). Rosacea sufferers have a reduced capacity to fight the effects of ROS. Additionally, sun exposure is known to induce the release of ROS which subsequently activates MMPs. The role of NO involves vascular changes and is partially responsible for the swelling and redness, worsening with increased sun exposure as an increase of NO has been linked with UVB rays.
Who Does Rosacea Affect?
There are various ‘opinions’ around about Rosacea. Despite how common the skin condition is, we unfortunately don’t know a lot it, what is clinically documented is;
- Roacea affects around 10% of the Australian population, both men and woman
- The condition is often hereditary, usually effecting people after the age of 30 and is generally found on Caucasian skins
- The condition often appears first on either the hose, chin or cheeks, but commonly affects all areas once established.
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How Can Rosacea Be Treated?
Unfortunately, there is no scientifically proven treatment method to cure Rosacea. There is various treatments available that will dramatically improve the condition and often keep it at bay for several years, but as all skins are different and each case unique, treatment options vary.
Most believe Rosacea and Sensitive skin requires non-active products because of their tendency to over-react. The important distinction is that these skin types need non-irritating, active ingredients to remodel their damaged skin in a way that promotes healing.
It is critical to use ingredients that remodel, repair and calm so that skin health is restored. Rosacea reflects two coexisting conditions; an increase in skin’s blood supply, attempting to repair itself and thinning from the excessive inflammation, resulting in visible capillaries.
Physical sunscreens with titanium dioxide or zinc oxide tend to irritate skin less than chemical sunscreens, that are absorbed by the body and skin and increasing the potential for skin irritation and exacerbation of rosacea.
IPL Skin Rejuvenation
Virtually all individuals who get Laser/IPL treatment for Rosacea see some form of improvement dependent on many things – skin type, how advanced the Rosacea is and of course, the skill and experience of the clinician performing the laser treatment. Laser/IPL treatment rapidly reduces or eliminates the redness of the skin caused by Rosacea.
IPL treats the persistent redness and dilated blood vessels of the skin, as well as the thickening of the nose and cheeks, that can manifest as part of Rosacea. Effective IPL often takes approximately 4 treatments, spaced apart every 2 weeks. It is often necessary to engage in lifelong follow-up treatments to keep flare-ups down.
Medical Skin Needling
Causing a controlled trauma to the skin stimulates the skins natural repair mechanisms which results in the function returning to ‘normal’ thus the appearance of rosacea is eliminated. Medical Skin Needling is the recommended treatment for people who cannot receive IPL treatments.
LED Light Therapy
Many rosacea sufferers find that treatment with all-red LED provides relief from their rosacea symptoms. Studies have shown that red and near-infrared range, from LED lamps and from low-level lasers, has an anti-inflammatory effect. Studies have shown that LED technology inhibits enzymes that breakdown collagen also minimising the increased symptoms of inflammation by reducing a communicative cell protein (TNF tumour necrosis factor).
Also since rosacea sufferers have a reduced capacity to fight the effects of ROS, increasing levels of superoxide dismutase (SOD) (an enzyme that repairs cells and reduces damage), allowing the clearance of ROS, helps to prevent, or even reduce some of the damaging effects ROS has on rosacea affected skin.
Vitamin A helps maintain skin health. A deficiency of B vitamins is common rosacea sufferers, thus can be beneficial. Riboflavin promotes elimination of cellular waste. Vitamin B12 is essential for cell replication production and repair. Vitamin C is required for formation of connective tissue between skin cells. Zinc helps heal skin and Copper is needed for long-term use of Zinc. Copper also acts as an anti-inflammatory agent needed to activate superoxide dismutase (SOD). Essential fatty acids (flaxseed oil/Omega 3 & 6 etc) reduce inflammation and can speed healing of skin lesions.
Generally, People Suffering From Rosacea Are Advised To
- Avoid stress and heavy physical exercise,
- keep the skin well moisturised and avoid anything that dehydrates the skin or that raises core body temperature
- Avoid the following in excess:
o alcohol consumption,
o hot spicy foods,
o Very hot showers- or at least avoid very hot water on the face.
o Regular exposure to chlorinated water
o Highly fragranced or perfumed skincare products, due to their high alcohol content.
A treatment at The Skin And Laser Clinic Sydney begins with a thorough Consultation. All new patients are required to have a consultation prior to commencing any treatment. Consultations are free of charge and obligation free. We listen to your concerns, assess your skin and evaluate your medical history before advising on the best and most affordable treatment plan to suit your needs.
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19/23 Norton Street, Leichhardt NSW 2040
0416 779 989