Q. Does each flare-up increase my chances of permanent facial redness?
A. Although rosacea may tend to worsen with each flare-up, facial redness may not be permanent with proper treatment and care. Compliance with medical therapy your dermatologist has prescribed is of key importance in minimizing redness. Avoiding lifestyle and environmental factors that trigger flushing may also be of significant help, and the National Rosacea Society offers a free "Rosacea Diary" booklet to help you identify such factors that may affect your individual case. In severe cases, therapy with lasers or intense pulsed light may be an option for reducing vasculature and associated visible blood vessels or redness.
Beyond medical therapy, cosmetics may be used to cover the appearance of redness. These may include green-tinted prefoundations to mask general redness followed by a color-corrective skin-tone foundation. However, it is critical to steer clear of ingredients that may sting, burn or cause other irritation.
Q. I saw four dermatologists before being diagnosed because the doctors thought I was too young to have rosacea. Is it that rare for someone in their early 20s to have rosacea?
A. While the greatest numbers of rosacea patients are first diagnosed after the age of 30, a sizeable percentage may develop rosacea at a younger age. In a National Rosacea Society survey of 1,391 rosacea patients, 17 percent of the respondents said the onset of their rosacea occurred prior to age 30. Although rare, reports in medical journals have also noted cases of rosacea among children.
Anyone who suspects they may have rosacea should see a dermatologist for diagnosis and appropriate therapy. Be sure to alert the doctor to any symptoms that are not visible or present during the time of your visit.