How Do You Explain Rosacea to Others?

Posted: 01/16/2017

conversation about rosaceaUnless a person has rosacea or knows someone who does, they may not be familiar with this chronic skin disorder that affects so many. Often rosacea sufferers are subject to misconceptions because of its effect on their appearance, and the fear or anticipation of false assumptions by others can cause worry, discomfort, and even modified behavior. Whether responding to incorrect comments or dispelling the potential for false impressions, it might be a good idea to initiate a conversation about your condition when meeting new people. Below are some possible jumping-off points.

  • I tend to avoid drinking alcohol because I have a skin condition that makes me blush and break out. Alcohol can trigger my symptoms.

  • I’m always careful in the sun because the redness will last much longer on my face. I have rosacea, a common skin disease, and sun exposure triggers my symptoms.

  • Wind and cold weather are not my friend. My face is particularly sensitive because I have a skin condition called rosacea. Strong wind and cold weather tend to irritate most people’s skin, but my face can remain red and inflamed for a long time afterward.

  • You might think I’m blushing, but don’t worry, I’m not embarrassed. I actually have a skin condition called rosacea. It’s very common and affects an estimated 16 million Americans, but many don’t know they have it.

  • No, I didn’t just finish exercising. I actually have a skin condition that makes my face red.

Other things you can mention include:

An estimated 16 million Americans have rosacea and most don’t know they have it.

Don’t worry, rosacea is not contagious.

Often my skin can become inflamed and it looks like I’m having an acne breakout, but rosacea is not connected to hygiene.

Though alcohol can trigger my flushing and other symptoms, the condition is not caused by drinking.

There isn’t a cure for rosacea, so I just have to manage it the best I can through medication and trigger avoidance.

I sometimes avoid wearing makeup because that can irritate my skin further. It’s not like I really need blush anyway!

It’s hard to do heavy exercise with rosacea, unless I want to be red faced for a whole day.

No one seems to know about rosacea, but it’s really common. W.C. Fields, Renee Zellweger, Amy Schumer, and even Rembrandt had rosacea.

Sometimes it looks like I have dry skin, but rosacea is not caused by dryness. I wish I could just moisturize, but that won’t solve my facial redness.

Social Media Editor: Emma Terhaar

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National Rosacea Society
196 James St.
Barrington, IL 60010

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The National Rosacea Society is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization whose mission is to improve the lives of people with rosacea by raising awareness, providing public health information and supporting medical research on this widespread but little-known disorder. The information the Society provides should not be considered medical advice, nor is it intended to replace

consultation with a qualified physician. The Society does not evaluate, endorse or recommend any particular medications, products, equipment or treatments. Rosacea may vary substantially from one patient to another, and treatment must be tailored by a physician for each individual case. For more information, visit About Us.