It is thought that Rosacea afflicts at least 30% of the Caucasian population, there are still only a handful of treatments for rosacea, and most of those are only by prescription. Some of the topical applications are MetroGel, MetroCream, MetroLotion, and Noritate (i.e., perhaps the creams you found). The active ingredient in each of these is metronidazole, which is considered the primary treatment for this disease. Occasionally, azelaic acid and oral antibiotics are also
an option. Because one must experiment until one finds what works best, all these should considered when developing a plan for treating Rosacea. And if someone must take an antibiotic, one needs to be careful because of the risk of a microbe adapting to an antibiotic after prolonged use (ie the specific antibiotic will not be effective to deal with other infections that one encounter).
Cosmetic skin-care products can help mitigate rosacea exacerbations, but there are no cosmetic product that can have an effect on the microbe that cause this skin disorder.
You have to ask yourself what does it look like: Someone will have red, flushed cheeks; swollen oil glands; dry flaky skin often with an oily layer underneath; overly sensitive skin that reacts to everything; and red pimple-like lumps is a description of what rosacea can look like. It can be a combination of symptoms, or just one. Regardless, if left untreated, rosacea almost always gets worse and it just doesn’t feel pretty when you have it.
Rosacea can start slowly, with red flushing across the cheeks that develops over time including more and more symptoms. The condition almost always becomes worse without treatment and there simply is no cure. Even more troubling is that the dry, flaky skin responds minimally or not at all to moisturizers, and the acne-like bumps and whiteheads may not respond to typical acne treatments. Not to mention the fact that the irritation on the face can be exacerbated by topical cortisone creams.
So where do you begin? The only place to start is by consulting a dermatologist or physician who has experience with this disorder, because rosacea is often misdiagnosed. Next, make sure the products you are using aren’t making matters worse, and then look at your lifestyle, because what you do can cause flare-ups.
The list below is what the experts suggest and I have my comments in some in italics:
- CA– USES AND TREATMENTS: No one really knows what causes rosacea but it is suspected that some kind of microbe under the skin is responsible. Killing this microbe seems to be the best way to improve the appearance of skin and keep matters from getting worse. Only a handful of treatments for rosacea exist, and they are all available by prescription only. There are five topicals: MetroLotion, MetroGel, MetroCream, Noritate, and Azelaic acid. In some studies, the success rate of these medications, when they were combined with an oral antibiotic, was close to 80%. (When considering an oral antibiotic you must consider the risk of your body adapting to it after prolonged usage. That means it won’t be effective later to help deal with other serious infections).
- GENTLE SKIN-CARE PRODUCTS: The National Rosacea Society surveyed 1,000 of their members, who identified alcohol, witch hazel, fragrance, menthol, peppermint, and eucalyptus as contributing to flare ups. It isn’t always easy to identify those substances on a label when they are listed under the Latin names that are required by the FDA for ingredient labels. Moreover, there are many fragrance and other irritating skin-care ingredients out there. What we have are pretty gentle skin care products.
- SALICYLIC ACID TREATMENT: Salicylic acid is an exfoliant that helps to remove the built-up layers of dry flaky skin on the face, and because salicylic acid is related to aspirin (both are salicylates) it can also have anti-inflammatory properties on the skin, reducing redness and swelling. It stands to reason if this is all true then, there are benefits of using a gentle toner or moisturizer that contains salicylic acid (BHA) in a pH of 3 to 4. This may help because of Salicylic Acid’ properties being so close to aspirin….Don’t know for sure. I just know that climate control helps too.
- LIFESTYLE FACTORS TO AVOID: Several lifestyle factors can make rosacea worse. These include hot liquids, spicy foods, exposure to extreme temperatures (including cooking over a hot stove), alcohol consumption, sunlight, stress, saunas, hot tubs, smoking, rubbing or massaging the skin, irritating cosmetics, and anything else that over-stimulates the skin and blood vessels. Again, everyone is an experiment.
- OTHER IRRITANTS TO AVOID: Rosacea can also be exacerbated by AHAs (though not for everyone), Retin-A, Renova, Differin, exfoliants of any kind, including scrubs and washcloths, and clay-based facial masks. The fewer products you use, the happier your rosacea-afflicted skin will be.
Back to my comments.I would suggest taking our ingredient list to the physician and ask them…if there is anything in their opinion that may cause them to flare up.
From my experience with my clients, they seem to handle Climate Control very well. They are all on the Normal – Dry skin care and one of them has been able to get rid of all the drugs and expensive stuff her physician has prescribed (Pretty cool).
I have no idea about if they handle our Normal to Oily Skin Care because all of my customers have normal to dry skin. I have found that some are ok with anything pigmented, but I have one customer that flares up badly with anything pigmented…..that being foundation, eyeshadows, blushes and the like. Remember… Everyone is an experiment. I’d try our climate control first…..it seems to calm the cells and see how you do, then add in a moisturizer….see how you do, and go so forth….just as you would do with someone that has sensitive skin or allergies. You always want to build slowly for tolerance sake, build one product at a time because…and if you do too many things at one time, you will not understand what is the cause if something goes wrong.
Hope this gives a little better insight to my clients with Rosacea.
Carol Clifton – Senegence