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While many adults still look forward to summer as eagerly as schoolchildren, new survey results show that increased exposure to sun and hot weather can wreak havoc on those with rosacea, a widespread, red-faced skin disorder now estimated to affect more than 16 million Americans. The survey also found that a variety of common heat sources can affect the condition year-round.
In a recent survey of 431 rosacea patients conducted by the National Rosacea Society (NRS), 80% of the respondents said they had suffered a flare-up of symptoms as a result of being out in the sun, and 80% said their condition was aggravated by hot weather. Excessive indoor heat was a trigger for 56% of those surveyed, while 55% said heavy exercise had set off a rosacea flare-up.
Fifty-four percent said a hot bath had induced an outbreak of rosacea signs and symptoms, and 42% said heated beverages had done the same. Heavy clothing had triggered a flare-up for 32%, and 26% cited menopausal hot flashes.
“Although medical therapy is available to help control this widespread and chronic disorder, it is also important for rosacea patients to identify and minimize any environmental or lifestyle factors that may trigger or aggravate their symptoms,” said Dr. Joseph Bikowski, clinical associate professor of dermatology at Ohio State University. He said he advises patients to keep a diary to determine what factors might be affecting their individual cases.
In addition to common heat triggers, survey respondents reported a host of other sources of heat that had aggravated their individual conditions, including fireplaces and bonfires, high-intensity lamps, steam baths, saunas and cooking over a hot stove.