1) <b>Avoid triggers</b>
Identify your triggers and keep a diary to help identify those which affect you. The following triggers were identified in a study of over 3,000 rosacea sufferers who were affected by food and drink:–
Wine was found to be ‘irritating to their condition’ by virtually 1 in every 2 sufferers
Alcohol was a trigger for slightly over 1 in 3 of sufferers
Cayenne pepper affected slightly over 1 in 3 of sufferers
Hot coffee affected around 1 in 3 of sufferers
Red pepper was a trigger for around 1 in 3 of sufferers
Chocolate affected around 1 in 3 of sufferers
Tomatoes affected around 1 in 3 of sufferers
Hot tea was a trigger for approx 1 in 3 of sufferers
Citrus fruits affected around 1 in 4 of sufferers
Black pepper affected around 1 in 5 of sufferers
White pepper was a trigger for approx 1 in 10 of sufferers
Paprika affected around 1 in 10 of sufferers
Aspartame (a sugar replacement) is reported to cause noticeable flushing in quite a few sufferers.
<b>Vegetables</b> such as spinach, eggplant and avocados affected less than 1 in 20.
<b>Fruit Triggers</b>. The following fruits more likely to be triggers, citrus fruits (and juices), bananas, red plums, raisins and figs. It has been identified that melon, peach, kiwi, banana and apple were responsible for over 70% of allergic reactions in adults with rosacea fruit allergy. Clarification of the statistic, this is over 70% of adults with ‘rosacea fruit allergy’, and not over 70% of adults with rosacea.
Diet should be tailored to your own specific requirements. When trigger foods are identified, they can be replaced with other foods that have the same nutritional value.
Ideally choose foods that ‘are close to nature’, i.e. unprocessed or have had minimal processing, they should also be free from artificial colouring and flavouring.
Eating the correct foods reduces or eliminates flushing and strengthens the small blood vessels that are the cause of redness. It is not unusual that underlying digestive problems need to be rectified; a website that has information on rosacea diet is NutritionalEssence.com
3) <b>IPL Treatment (possibly combined with hair removal for acne rosacea)</b>
4) <b>Skin care products.</b>
For most rosacea patients these are not a treatment as they do not cure rosacea. However conventional soaps and shampoos may make rosacea worse. Using rosacea skin and care products reduces the effects of rosacea in a percentage of sufferers. It is suggested that companies that sell a sample starter kits for a reasonable price are tried first (typically from $20.00)
5) <b>Controlling rosacea with medication</b>
Medication should be used a last resort if all else has failed; once started it is hard to stop. There can be side effects if the medication is taken over a long time span. The UK ‘NHS’ website says that ‘over-the-counter’ medicines are not effective rosacea treatments and can sometimes make it worse.
<b>Treatments that are NOT recommended</b>
i) Cosmetics that are not actual treatments and are on ‘pay per click’ sites when the search words ‘rosacea treatment’ are used. If you click on a link and find the site belongs to a cosmetic company, look at it carefully and see if the cosmetics do treat rosacea or are simply cosmetics that do not irritate a sensitive skin or are described as ‘anti redness solutions’.
ii) E-books that you pay for; do not buy books sold in electronic form that are not in high street bookstores, where you can browse before buy. If you do pay for an e-book be prepared to ask for a refund, e.g. if the text spaced out to make more pages and if it does not tell you anything that you cannot find on the internet. Genuine e-books to help rosacea sufferers not ask for money; a recommended one has been researched by Lisa Borg Dip BCNH and can be obtained (free) from the Pulselightclinic website.
The best treatment for a long term solution, (and therefore the most cost effective) is considered to be the holistic approach involving 1) avoiding triggers, 2) diet, and ideally working with a rosacea dietary specialist, 3) IPL treatment from a specialist rosacea treatment clinic.
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