Is it Rosacea?

canstockphoto40922798My recent blogs have been all about Skincare & Essential Oils. I found so much information, that I am continuing this month with a blog about Rosacea… 

This chronic skin condition affects women more than men, & is usually diagnosed between the ages of 30 – 50. Rosacea can be recognized by ongoing facial blushing across the cheeks & on the chin. Your skin may get dry or flaky, feel itchy, or sting. The symptoms of Rosacea have been broken up into 4 sub-categories; they are:

  1. Erythematelangiectatic Rosacea: flushing of the skin, visible or enlarged blood vessels
  2. Papulopustular Rosacea: Swelling & redness of the skin, acne-like breakouts (pimples and/or bumps on the skin, but not black or whiteheads).
  3. Phymatous Rosacea: a thickening or a rough, bumpy texture of the skin; (Men typically get this type of Rosacea, which also may include an enlargement of the nose, a condition known as rhinophyma.)  
  4. Ocular Rosacea: irritated or gritty eyes; eyelids may get red or swollen.

Causes of Rosacea:

The causes of Rosacea are not exactly known. While research is ongoing, what they have found were some common factors that many Rosacea sufferers share.

  • Genetics may be a factor. Some think that Rosacea may run in families.
  • The Rosacea may be caused by an over-reaction of the body’s immune system.
  • The microscopic “Demodex” mite that commonly lives on the skin may be a factor. Studies have shown that some Rosacea patients have a larger than the normal number of this mite on their skin.
  • The body’s reaction & ability to process to a protein called Cathelicidin, may cause the redness of the skin & “determine whether a person gets Rosacea.”  

Common Triggers: Our daily lifestyle choices may also trigger a Rosacea flare-up. These triggers can vary from person to person. These triggers are:

  • Weather conditions like cold & dry winters or hot, dry summers. Sun exposure is also a factor, causing irritation or redness… *** Protect your skin from extreme weather. Apply appropriate lotions to help with dryness & irritation; Sunscreens to protect your skin are highly recommended
  •  Stress may trigger some people’s Rosacea flare ups.  *** Managing your stress is so important in all aspects of our life. Check out my blog on Stress & Self-Care for more info.
  • Extreme exercise along with a lot of sweating may irritate the skin. *** Try less intense forms of exercise. Also, have a cool shower to reduce your temperature & wash the sweat off of your face & body as soon as possible after a workout. 
  • Your Diet may trigger Rosacea; this includes hot caffeinated drinks, spicy food & alcohol especially red wine. *** Keep a food diary to track of your diet, & your triggers. Then modify your diet as needed. This is an important step because everyone’s triggers are different.
  • Make-Up & Skincare may cause Rosacea flare ups. *** Check out the ingredients in your products & avoid abrasive exfoliators. Unfortunately, it is usually by trial & error to find the right products for you. (And you will need to be flexible because your skin triggers can change

When it comes to skincare you may also want to consider using Essential Oils that canstockphoto22894795have been diluted in a Carrier Oil. Like I mentioned in my blogs:  ” Love the “Skin” you’re in…” and  “Love your Skin Part 2 – Carrier Oil.”  Essential & Carrier Oils have different properties that are helpful for different types of skin & skin conditions, which also include Rosacea.

Continue reading “Is it Rosacea?”

Back to School…

First Posted September 2016

canstockphoto1593771With the beginning of September, comes all sorts of changes. Our holidays are over and our free time is somewhat limited. If you have children, you are probably finding that as their schedules start to fill up, yours does too. It is really important to allow for some downtime as well as some flexibility in your schedule to prevent burn out. During these busy months leading up to the holidays, try diffusing essential oils in your home to enhance your family’s well-being as well as your own self – care. (There are essential oils that are more appropriate if you have younger children, but you still have a lot to choose from).

Diffusing Essential Oils is helpful for stress, focus, relaxation, as well as seasonal congestion, colds, and allergies. Blends that have antiviral and antibacterial properties. would be a good choice for the start of the school year as well as the cold season. You can also use essential oil blends that are more calming especially if your child is feeling a little anxious about starting or going back to school.Try more relaxing essential oils for your bedtime routines. A better night sleep is always a good thing as it helps boost the immune system. I prefer to use an ultrasonic diffuser because most have timers and the added safety feature of turning off when the water level gets too low. When you are diffusing essential oils:

  • try 3 – 4 drops of your blend and diffuse for 15 – 30 min, to see how you like the scent, but more importantly, to see how you and your child feel.
  • When using your diffuser, Author Robert Tisserand (2014) says,  “Don’t diffuse for long periods of time, 30 – 60 minutes is good for adults”. For young children ages 2 & up diffuse for 15 – 30 min for specific reasons, like congestion or sleep issues. Check the timer setting on your diffuser to find the best one for you, your family and your environment.

For Everyday & the Cold Season…
best breezyOne of my favorite blends is my Breezy Diffuser Blend. It’s a good choice for everyday use during the cold season, especially if you have younger children. Try it first thing in the morning to wake everyone up or after school, when kids are doing their homework.  (I wouldn’t use this one at bedtime as it is a more stimulating blend.) You could also try Lemon, Grapefruit, Lavender or Palmarosa essential oils for younger children.
***For older children (9 & up) or adults you can try my Inhale blend; Purify,  or Life Support Diffuser Blends, both have stronger scents, so depending on your scent preference and the situation, you have a few choices. You can also try Niaouli, Tea Tree, Thyme, and/or one of the Eucalyptus varieties for older children or adults. Just check the contraindications before use.

Relaxing & Bedtime Routines…
canstockphoto8095059With back to school, little ones can get anxious and not sleep very well. Those little worries can seem awfully big to someone just starting school or having to make new friends. Try Lavender, Mandarin, or Roman Chamomile for younger children. Adults and older children can also use these essential oils as well as Bergamot, Cedarwood, Clary Sage, Patchouli, Sweet Marjoram, Vetiver and Ylang Ylang. Just check the contraindications before use. Continue reading “Back to School…”

Moments of Reflection & Change…

First Posted September 2015

Change is a measure of time and, in the autumn, time seems speeded up. What was is not and never again will be; what is is change. – Edwin Teale

Leaves have been falling in my garden for awhile now, and you can feel the changes astersin the air. The asters are blooming; The wind is crisp in the evening, the Sun is lower in the sky, & sunsets are starting to come earlier as we move towards the Autumnal Equinox on September 23.
The Autumnal Equinox or Mabon as it is now known is considered to be the second harvest festival. In ancient times, our ancestors would be celebrating the harvest, it was a time of prosperity; the fruition of months of hard work. The celebration would be similar to our Thanksgiving. A time to thank the God and the Goddess for all of the blessings that they had received.
I like to honor the equinoxes. I find that these quieter moments are more meaningful as I reflect on the changes that are happening in my life. My way of honoring these moments usually involves essential oils. Either using them in my diffuser while I meditate or creating a new blend. The process of creating a blend is different every single time. Sometimes it’s more intuitive, and sometimes it’s more research based depending on what the diffuser blend is to be used for.The oils that I chose to use for my Autumn Equinox diffuser blend were definitely a combination of research as well as some inspiration.There are oils that honored the harvest, like Rosemary and Basil as well as oils that honored the return to the earth, an ending of a cycle, like Myrrh and Patchouli. For balance, I had to use my beloved Clary Sage. But my first choice was always Cypress. Continue reading “Moments of Reflection & Change…”

Inhalation & your “Healing Heart”

First Posted September 2014
Inhalation and diffusing blends are wonderful things… Just a hint of a scent can make us reca100_6334ll a memory or an emotion before we are even aware of it. The sense of smell is the only one of the five senses that is linked directly to the limbic portion of the brain, which controls our emotions.

It depends on the day, or the hour, which of my diffuser blends is my favorite. If I’m tired, I want an uplifting blend in the morning & a relaxing blend later in the day and so on…. Out of all of my blends, the De-Stressing blends are my go-to blends. I tend to come back to them time & time again, but for different reasons.

Healing Heart was the first blend that I ever made. It was done in about 20 minutes & I haven’t changed the recipe at all. I just knew how I wanted it to smell. I found that it was comforting if I was stressed or anxious, helped me sleep at night but was still fresh enough that I don’t get tired of it. I’m not a huge floral person, but I love the combination of Rose Geranium, Grapefruit & Lemongrass essential oil.

  •  Rose Geranium is a calming, comforting and balancing essential oil that is good for your heart chakra as you go thru all the changes in your life. It also balances hormones in the body, particularly for women. While there are some similarities, I find that I actually like the scent of Rose Geranium better than Rose essential oil. I think that it is the spicy undertones that I like.
  •  Grapefruit is a sunny, uplifting essential oil that really freshens up your blend & can lift your spirits if you are feeling low. I find Grapefruit essential oil good to use in your diffuser if you have a headache due to fatigue. (At least it is for me; remember that everyone reacts differently to the scents of essential oils).
  •  And what can I say about Lemongrass? For years, I couldn’t stand the smell. But now, I can’t get enough of it. It is so crisp & fresh. Lemongrass is useful during emotional transitions and being open to them. I find that I have the urge to add Lemongrass to everything I blend, but so far I’ve been able to restrain myself.

My Blog is for information only & is not meant to replace medical advice.
Essential Oils are not for ingestion & should always be diluted before topical use.

References:

  • Battaglia Salvatore. The Complete Guide to Aromatherapy. 2nd edition, The International Centre of Holistic Aromatherapy, Australia, 2003
  • Davis Patricia.  Aromatherapy an A-Z. New revised edition, Vermilion, an imprint of Edbury Publishing, a Random House Company, 2005
  • Lawless. Julia. The Encyclopedia of Essential Oils, Thorsons, 2002