Q: Why are my cheeks always red even when I don’t go in the sun? Rita, Warsaw
A. Rita, I’m sorry to hear you’re dealing with this frustrating problem. Without seeing you in person, it is difficult to say with 100 percent certainty what you are struggling with, but it definitely sounds like you may have rosacea. Rosacea affects 14 million people in the United States, according to the National Institute of Health. If you want an example of what it looks like, look at Prince Harry, former President Bill Clinton, Renee Zellweger and comedian WC Fields, who had a very severe case as evident by his bulbous nose.
Rosacea often looks like you have been running and your cheeks are flush, but you actually haven’t been running at all. It typically appears in the center of your face such as the nose, cheeks, chin and forehead and is most common in women with fair skin between the ages of 30 and 60. In some cases, the skin is also bumpy and acne-like. While the cause of rosacea is still unclear, we do know certain triggers for the disease including: heat, alcohol, stress, sun, wind, cold, spicy food and exercise.
While there is no cure for this disease, Rita, there are several treatment options available that will significantly manage the condition including medical skin care, laser treatments and in some cases chemical peels. By using these treatments in conjunction, this can make it easier for rosacea sufferers to cope with their disease and gain more self-esteem. According to studies conducted by the National Rosacea Society, 70 percent of rosacea sufferers say that the condition affects their interactions at work while 30 percent say they miss work because of flare-ups.
The Laser Genesis procedure utilizes non-invasive laser technology to safely, discretely and effectively diffuse excessive redness and help manage large pores. Patients can expect to see subtle yet consistent results after each treatment, without unwanted side effects such as bruising or excessive skin irritation. Chemical peels with salicylic acid can also help to control rosacea because it acts as an anti-inflammatory agent.
Rita, I recommend you consult with a medical professional to get a proper diagnosis. From there, you can begin treating this condition so you no longer have to struggle or feel embarrassed. April is rosacea awareness month, so it is the perfect time to take charge of your skin to look and feel your best.
Jennifer Kauffman is a Board Certified Nurse Practitioner, practicing in Warsaw. She is a sought after speaker at medical conferences such as the American Academy of Plastic Surgeons. Jennifer is a member of American Academy of Nurse Practitioners and Coalition of Advance Practice Nurses of Indiana. She received her Nursing and Nurse Practitioner degrees from Goshen College, and Indiana Wesleyan University. Jennifer is a Clinical Instructor nationally to physicians and nurses on Botox, fillers and sclerotherapy.
Do you have a question for Jennifer, about this article or another cosmetic skin care issue? Please call Vein Institute & Medi Spa at 574-267-1900 to have your questions answered and considered for future columns. Questions can also be submitted online at www.veinmedicalspa.com