4 Common Skin Conditions

While you might blush less readily than you did when you were younger, it's likely your face is rosier than you might like, thanks to assorted afflictions of aging skin. A visit to a dermatologist will help you figure out—and treat—the cause of skin redness.

Here are some solutions for four of the most common types of florid facial woes.

  1. Broken capillaries—These can be caused by sun damage or repeated bouts of windburn. A new prescription preparation called Mirvaso gel is thought to help by constricting blood vessels for up to 12 hours, but laser treatment, which seals the vessels, offers a permanent solution (although in some cases, vessels may reopen over time). Prevent further vessel damage by using a broad-spectrum sunscreen with an SPF of 30 that contains zinc oxide or titanium dioxide.
  2. Rosacea—No one really knows what causes this condition, but it's believed to be genetic. Rosacea manifests as broken blood vessels, red bumps and pimples, usually occurring on the center of the face, and often on the chin, nose and forehead as well.
    • Spicy food,
    • alcohol,
    • extremes of temperature,
    • hot baths,
    • strenuous exercise,
    • ultraviolet light,
    • hot beverages and
    • caffeine can all exacerbate rosacea.
    Medication options include topical and oral antibiotics. Laser Genesis treatments are effective—but pricey—and require six sessions performed two to four weeks apart. (Typical cost is $500 per treatment).
  3. General blotchiness—Years of exposure to sun can lead to permanently dilated blood vessels, resulting in patches of redness. For a temporary solution, try one of the numerous over-the-counter creams on the market that contain caffeine or green tea, which constrict blood vessels. CoolGlide laser treatments, which seal individual blood vessels, offer a permanent solution. Anywhere from one to three treatments, done four weeks apart, may be necessary. Typical cost $750 per treatment. Another option is intense pulsed light (IPL), in which light is applied to the surface of the skin in precise pulses. On average, four to six treatments are recommended, scheduled at three-week intervals. The typical cost is $750 per treatment.
  4. Product-induced redness—While products with retinol, salicylic acid and alphahydroxy acids can help improve the clarity and texture of the skin, they can also be irritating if overused. Make sure to follow directions when using creams, lotions and masks containing acids. Use only mild facial cleansers, such as those that have ceramides or glycerin in them.

From our sister publication REMEDY'S Healthy Living Spring 2014; Our Beauty Expert, Debra Jaliman, M.D., is a top New York City dermatologist and the author of Skin Rules (St. Martin's Press, 2012)

Publication Review By: the Editorial Staff at Healthcommunities.com

Published: 10 Feb 2014

Last Modified: 10 Feb 2014