Fond early memories of holidays and family celebrations remain vivid in Ruth Arons' mind, as does going back to those times to pinpoint her first flushing symptoms as a young child. The coming and going of these symptoms continued throughout her teens and well into early married life.
"I remember going to dances with my husband and then out for pizza, and the flushing on my face and ears would be startling," she recalled. "It would be especially bad if I had a taste of wine."
Finally in 1986, when she was in her mid-50s, she had a major flare-up with bumps (papules) and pimples (pustules), as well as facial skin that became very dry and flaky and took on a reddish-gray hue rather than its normal pale ivory color.
"I went to a dermatologist because there was nothing I could do to stop it -- soap made it worse, I couldn't use perfume and I had pimples galore," Ruth said. "Of course I was shocked to hear the diagnosis was rosacea, but I decided to follow my doctor's orders and learn all I could about the disorder."
Because she is allergic to antibiotics, her doctor prescribed a topical medication and suggested that she watch her diet and monitor environmental factors to determine her rosacea triggers. Following her doctor's orders has brought her rosacea under control -- as well as the return of her beautiful ivory skin.
Following a strict diet, wearing hats in the sun and scarves in the cold to keep triggers at bay, as well as faithfully applying her topical medication have been successful for Ruth. Her advice to others with rosacea: "Know your triggers, follow doctor's orders and live your life fully."
At 74 years young, that formula has served her well for nearly two decades.