Teresa Davisson, like many rosacea patients, never even considered the possibility that she might have rosacea when she experienced her first flare-up as she approached her fortieth birthday.
"I thought it was just an allergic reaction to the lotion I was using, so I switched to another lotion, and my skin cleared up," said the 51-year-old medical biller from Indiana. "Unfortunately, six months later the pimples were back, and I had a blush that wouldn't fade."
Teresa visited two different doctors before she was diagnosed with rosacea. The dermatologist prescribed an oral medication as well as two topical products. She also spent time learning more about rosacea and discovered the importance of recognizing and avoiding lifestyle and environmental triggers. As a result, she avoided the sun as much as possible and lowered the temperature of her hot baths.
Her skin improved, and hoping she could control the rosacea on her own, Teresa stopped visiting her dermatologist. Within months, her condition worsened to the point that she was even having problems with her eyes.
During this hiatus, however, Teresa's insurance changed and she was forced to find a new dermatologist. He prescribed a topical therapy that she says made all the difference in the world for her individual case.
"My skin has improved so much that I don't even need to use makeup to cover any signs of rosacea," Teresa said.
She also uses common sense to help prevent a flare-up. "I don't let my rosacea keep me inside, but I know that I need to cool off once I'm inside if I've been out in the heat," she said. "I'll come in and splash cold water on my face."
In addition, Teresa said she puts sunscreen on her face every day and never goes outside without her hat. And although she said stress is one of her most difficult personal triggers, Teresa said she has become successful at calming herself down in stressful situations in order to ward off a flare-up.
"When dealing with life and rosacea, I just remind myself to breathe deeply," Teresa said.