Rosacea is a common skin condition that affects 1 in 10 people in the UK and contrary to popular belief, it isn’t caused by drinking a bottle of wine very night, it doesn’t only affect women over 60 and nor is it only characterised by redness or swollen veins.
In order to separate the fact from the fiction, Dr Anjali Mahto Consultant Dermatologist & British Skin Foundation spokesperson clears up some of the rosacea myths.
MYTH 1: ROSACEA ONLY AFFECTS HEAVY DRINKERS
Despite the common rosacea heavy drinker stereotype, rosacea is actually most common between the ages of 30-60 years in fair-skinned individuals affecting women more than men. Alcohol can trigger flare ups in some people but it doesn’t cause the skin condition.
MYTH 2: ROSACEA’S ONLY SYMPTOMS ARE RED CHEEKS OR A RED NOSE
Other symptoms of rosacea can be spots, flushing, visible blood vessels and occasional burning or stinging sensation or skin sensitivity. The skin, particularly of the nose, may thicken with time. Approximately 50% of people with Rosacea suffer with Ocular Rosacea which affects the eyes causing irritation, styes or swollen eyelids.
MYTH 3: ONLY OLDER PEOPLE SUFFER FROM ROSACEA
Rosacea is more common after the age of 30. Usually the symptoms are intermittent but over the years skin changes such as redness may become fixed until they are present all the time.
MYTH 4: ROSACEA IS CAUSED BY POOR HYGIENE
Rosacea is a chronic, inflammatory skin disorder predominantly affecting the face. Rosacea can occur due to a number of different factors; eating spicy food and drinking red wine can trigger a flushing response as well as UV light and wind which act as reddening triggers. It is not caused by poor hygiene.
MYTH 5: ROSACEA IS THE SAME AS ACNE
Rosacea was previously known as ‘acne rosacea’, however, acne and rosacea are two different unrelated skin conditions.
MYTH 6: ROSACEA IS CONTAGIOUS
Rosacea is not considered contagious or infectious. You will not catch it from coming into contact with someone else that has it. Rosacea, can however, run in families.
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