Rosacea is a common, non-contagious inflammatory skin condition which is found on the face and appears as red, flushed skin. It is often mistaken for Eczema, Acne, or a skin allergy. Overtime, redness can get worse and bumps or tiny pus-filled pimples, and enlarged blood vessels can appear. Symptoms may vary from one person to another and there is no predicting severity. Researchers continue to pursue the causes and cure for Rosacea as it is quite a complex condition and is broken down into four subtypes;
- Erythematotelangiectatic Rosacea-Persistent redness and visible blood vessels
- Papulopustular Rosacea- Same as above but with tiny acne-like bumps
- Phymatous Rosacea- Same as above but with thickened skin causing an enlargement of the nose
- Ocular Rosacea- Same as above with eye irritations such as dry eye, tearing and burning.
Rosacea does not improve or resolve on its own, and untreated rosacea can worsen over time.
The Nardella Clinic of Calgary offers a variety of naturopathic treatment options that can help treat the symptoms of Rosacea. There are believed to be five key triggers of Rosacea:
1. Demodex Mites
2. Blood Vessel abnormalities
3. Helicobacter Pylori
4. Small Inestinal Bacterial Growth
5. Leaky Gut syndrome
Dermodectic Mites are microscopic creatures that inhabit the pores of the skin. They are not visible to the naked eye and live harmlessly on most people. Rosacea sufferers have a higher density of these mites on their skin that those without Rosacea. It is believed this higher density of mites may lead to or worsen the condition. In order to treat Demodectic Rosacea, one must manage the Mite population on the skin and also soothe the inflammation caused. Specific active topical products, natural anti-inflammatories, and ultrasonic treatments such as the Dermasound are often suggested to help control these Mites or inflammation. Blood vessel abnormalities in the blood vessels of the face play a role in the development of Rosacea as it causes persistent redness and enlarged blood vessels. What causes the blood vessels to inflame and swell is unkown. Calgary Nardella Clinic offers a specific Intense Pulsed Light treatment called Photorejuvenation (PhotoFacial) to help calm or block these enlarged blood vessels.
Helicobacter Pylori (Hp) is a common bacterial infection that affects the lining of the stomach and causes inflammation and stomach ulcers. Hp may also lead to an increase of Nitrous Oxide (NO) in the blood and tissue which, along with the inflammatory symptoms, is believed to cause a range of other conditions, including Rosacea. The bacteria may also prompt a protein known as bradykinnin to develop which may trigger the expansion of blood vessels (a common characteristic of Rosacea). Oral antibiotics, natural supplement, and colonics are often suggested for Hp infections.
Small Intestinal Bacterial Overgrowth (SIBO) are known to cause some cases of Rosacea. SIBO develops when there is a growth of excess of bacteria in the small intestine (in a healthy digestive system there is only a small amount of bacteria present). This causes inflammation and damage to the intestinal wall which prompts other conditions such as Rosacea to develop. Diet alteration, herbal remedies, digestive enzymes, and probiotics are typically suggested for SIBO.
Leaky Gut Syndrome (LGS) is a common condition that occurs when the digestive tract walls become too penetrable, thus allowing toxins, allergens and food molecules to pass out of the gut into the rest of the body. The immune system identifies these as ‘invaders’ and responds to them as it normally would to a unwanted virus, for example. As the leakages occur with each meal, this leads to an overactive immune response which leads to inflammation and further conditions, such as Rosacea. With treatment, initial emphasis should be placed on healing the damaged digestive tract and soothing the inflammation caused. We recommend identifying any possible food allergies and make a required nutritional change. Probiotics and natural supplements are also recommended.
Skin health tips for rosacea
- Choose products that are non-drying, free of alcohol
- Use a mild cleanser and do not rub or scrub skin
- Make a habit of using sunscreen
- Moisturize your skin, especially during the colder months when the air is dry
Sun Damage – Reversing the Effects of Aging
Today, we live in a world that is hypersensitive to the dangers of the sun. The debate rages between getting sun exposure for Vitamin D synthesis and avoiding the sun to minimize cancer risk. Not so long ago, there was no thought that the sun’s rays could be harmful, and a golden tan was the epitome of beauty. We would lay out for hours at a time, slathered in baby oil, walking the fine line between burning to a crisp and glowing radiantly. Little did we know that the years spent basking in the sun would leave us weathered and leathery, resembling Magda from There’s Something About Mary!
Besides the cancer causing dangers of sun overexposure, a more visible sign of sun damage starts becoming apparent in our 30’s, accelerating our aging appearance far past our actual years. Termed “Photoaging”, the sun destroys collagen, giving our skin a crepe like texture with deep wrinkles that don’t follow natural expression lines. Red capillaries show through the thinning skin on our cheeks. The colour we once coveted now becomes blotchy as “age spots” or “liver spots” start showing up, a sign that our skin has tried to protect itself to keep from burning. Dead skin cells build up as free radical oxidation destroys our skins ability to renew itself efficiently.
At The Nardella Clinic in Calgary, attention is brought to the building blocks of our skin, to renew and enhance the natural processes which have been broken down by sun overexposure. A home skin care routine is established to form the basis of all clinic treatments. Alphahydroxy Acids (AHA’s), Vitamins A and C, antioxidants and omega 3 fatty acids are the cornerstone ingredients in providing healthy nutrition to the skin as we worked to rebuild collagen and elastin, remove hyperpigmentation and reestablish a good skin cell renewal balance.
Monthly DermaSound skin treatments remove the dead skin cells and penetrated much needed nutrition deep to the newly emerging skin cells. The skin’s renewal rate is increased and rebalanced with the addition of AHA chemical peels to the DermaSound, which also acted to remove pigmentation from the skin.
The Photofacial laser treatments are commonly recommended to alternate with the DermaSounds to enhance the removal of pigment from the skin, and Refirme stimulated the production of much needed collagen and elastin to tighten lax skin along the jaw line, neck and eyes. The addition of Revanesse Pure injections provide the skin with hylauronic acid, the building block of collagen and elastin’ and our body’s natural water hydrator.
Aging is normal, and we can embrace it. However, tanning accelerates the photoaging process, and can be prevented and reversed.