Do You Really Have Adult Acne?

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Acne is the most common skin disorder in the United States, affecting an estimated 40 million to 50 million people across the country. While the problem is usually associated with puberty, patients of all ages experience the condition, with some adults developing the problem as late as their 50s. If you still have acne as an adult, you have likely considered scheduling an appointment at a local dermatologist clinic to discuss the best adult acne treatments. However, acne dermatologists say that their adult patients may be experiencing another condition entirely. Do you really have adult acne, or could you have rosacea? Read on to learn more about this common condition and think about scheduling an appointment with an acne dermatologist for an official diagnosis.

What is Rosacea?
Rosacea is a skin condition that causes redness and pimples in the central region of the face. As many as 14 million Americans have this problem, many of them women from the ages of 30 to 50. Rosacea is especially prevalent in fair-skinned people, especially those of Celtic or Scandinavian descent who had other skin problems in adolescence. The condition often runs in families and is seen frequently in people who blush or flush easily.

What Causes Rosacea?
Acne dermatologists can’t definitively identify what causes rosacea, but many agree that the condition is likely connected to temperature. The skin’s natural bacteria thrives when the skin is warm, and because people with rosacea flush frequently, these germs have regular access to this beneficial temperature. The symptoms are therefore believed to be a reaction to the bacteria. In comparison, acne forms when the skin becomes clogged, trapping the bacteria and the skin’s natural oils, which might explain why both conditions feature breakouts.

Treating Rosacea
Patients who believe that they have rosacea are advised to begin by making a few healthy changes to their skincare regimen: for example, washing skin regularly with a gentle cleanser and cold water and following up with a moisturizer might help. Patients should also consider taking steps to reduce their body temperature by drinking cool beverages, using a cool towel on their face after a workout, and avoiding certain foods and other triggers that might cause flushing. If these steps have no effect, patients should then visit an acne dermatologist or other skin specialist to discuss topical treatments, antibiotics and other drugs used to address the condition.

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