Getting control of your rosacea symptoms may not only consist of avoiding food and beverage triggers, using sunscreen, and using topical medicated creams, extreme emotions may also be a trigger for some people with rosacea.
Just “not feeling” stress, anxiety, or embarrassment is much easier said than done. But, there may be ways for you to help reign these emotions in or take steps to reduce their effects on your rosacea.
Below, we will cover just which strong emotions can elicit a flushing response, the reason behind how your emotions can trigger rosacea symptoms, and a few tips that may help you better control emotional rosacea flare-ups.
Many strong emotions can be the triggering event of a rosacea flare-up.
In a survey conducted by the national rosacea society (NRS) in 748 rosacea patients, 69% of responders said that they have a stress-related rosacea flare-up at least once a month. And only 5% of responders said that they have never had a stress-related rosacea flare-up.
General emotional stress was cited as the most commonly reported emotion to trigger a rosacea flare-up at 95%, although it is not the only potential emotional culprit.
76% of survey responders also cited Anxiety as a trigger, worry was mentioned for 63%, frustration was reported in 52%, anger for 49%, embarrassment for 40%, fear in 27%, excitement in 23%, grief for 20%, indecision in 14%, and guilt for 13%.
As you can see, these are all normally pretty strong emotions, and we consider most of them to be decidedly negative, except for excitement which is normally a positive experience.
These stressful or intense emotions tend to stimulate your sympathetic nervous system, also sometimes referred to as your “fight or flight” system.
When the sympathetic nervous system is kicked into gear, your body pumps epinephrine (also sometimes called adrenaline) into your bloodstream. Down the line, this system also triggers the release of cortisol, also known as the “stress hormone”.
Together, this epinephrine flood causes the heart to beat faster and stronger, increases blood pressure, and dilates the vessels in skeletal muscles. For those with rosacea, having this system on long-term can precipitate a rosacea flare. It is also possible that those with rosacea have dysregulation in regards to the counter parasympathetic (“rest and digest”) system, which is normally responsible for the release of chemical messengers for relaxation and rest.
In addition to these potential mechanisms, long-term stress can trigger more inflammation, which is already a known issue for those dealing with rosacea.
You can’t avoid all stressful situations or emotions, and they are a normal part of life. But, you can take steps to better control how they affect you and have tools at the ready to calm yourself down.
Below are a few tips that you can use to help reduce chronic stress or calm yourself down during a highly stressful situation.
1. Get plenty of rest: Being properly rested can help insulate you from stressful situations, making you feel better equipped to handle anything.
2. Practice deep breathing techniques: Deep breathing can help stimulate the parasympathetic system and help keep you calmer during stressful times.
3. Maintain a regular exercise routine: Regular exercise can help heighten your stress tolerance and boost your overall mood, making things seem much more manageable.
4. Try yoga or meditation: Yoga and meditation are great ways to keep yourself calm and centered throughout your day, no matter what pops up. Try out some free guided meditation or yoga sessions online to see if it helps you keep your stress levels in check.
5. Do the little things that calm you and make you happy: If you are dealing with some stressful situations, be sure to take a little time to do the things that you love and that make you happy. This could be taking the time to cozy up and read, going for a walk in your favorite local park, calling your friends and family for a chat, and just generally taking some self-care time.
6. Learn to say no: If you can feel yourself becoming overwhelmed, remember that it is ok to say no. If you cannot fit another thing on your plate without ramping up your stress levels, be honest with others and pass on unnecessary obligations.
7. Remind yourself that this rosacea flare will pass: Rosacea flares in themselves can be stressful, and stress can make rosacea worse, potentially causing a never-ending stress/rosacea spiral. Stop this cycle by reminding yourself that your rosacea flare will likely pass, and try not to stress out about your skin.
Here at Strut, we try to take even more stress out of rosacea treatments by offering prescription rosacea creams online through our secure telemedicine portal.
Our rosacea formulas are customized to your exact symptoms, and since they are uniquely compounded, they can contain multiple active ingredients like Azelaic Acid, Oxymetazoline, Metronidazole, and Ivermectin (depending on what suits you).
If you are interested in seeing if our Strut Rosacea Formulas may be a good fit for your skincare needs, you can have a free online questionnaire and image-based telemedicine consultation with our U.S. licensed doctors in just 10-15 minutes.
If one of our medications is appropriate for you, your order will be shipped from a U.S. licensed compounding pharmacy to your front door with our free shipping.
If you have any questions during your treatment, our staff and doctors are standing by for free unlimited follow-ups.