Rosacea Review - Newsletter of the National Rosacea SocietyRosacea Review - Newsletter of the National Rosacea Society

Q&A: Exercise & Itchy Eyelids

Q.  I enjoy lifting weights, but whenever I put my body under physical stress my symptoms get worse.  What type of physical exercise is optimal and at what intensity? 

A.  Any physical exercise that greatly increases your core body temperature may result in flushing and a flare-up of rosacea symptoms, so low- to medium-intensity exercise is probably your best bet.  You might be able to reduce the intensity of your current exercise routine with these techniques:

•  Instead of scheduling one long weight-lifting session, break it into two shorter sessions, morning and evening. 

•  Position a fan next to your weight bench to help cool your skin.

•  Moisten a bandana, put it in the freezer for 15 minutes prior to your workout and then tie it loosely around your neck during your workout.

•  Keep a glass of ice chips on hand to suck on if you feel yourself starting to overheat.

In any case, continuing to take your medication as prescribed can only bolster any modifications you make.

Q.  Some mornings I wake up with itchy, swollen eyelids.  Do you have an idea what may be causing this?

A.  It could be an allergic reaction of some sort, perhaps from a new pillow or a different laundry detergent or fabric softener.  Or, it could be the beginnings subtype 4 (ocular) rosacea, which often develops after the onset of other rosacea signs and symptoms.  

Severe cases can result in vision loss, so it is important to see your doctor if your symptoms continue.