This has been a two year saga for me. At first it started as a small patch on the side of my face that wouldn't go away - I thought it was a reaction to a new eye cream. I went back to my old one and waited months for the patch to clear up. No luck. Fast forward a year and the patch grew to the other side of my face and eventually my forehead. I was baffled: how all of a sudden did I have all of this acne???
Sure, I could have gone to the dermatologist but I knew the results already: she'd throw me on some drugs and call it a day. I decided to try to figure out the root cause and eliminate it. After doing some reading, I came across lots of articles suggesting that dairy can cause acne and knowing my diet was fairly heavy on dairy (half and half in my coffee, obsessed with greek yogurt and of course butter and/or cheese with dinner...) I decided to try eliminating it and see what happened -- this is where things got interesting.
I started on the morning of February 1, 2019 and by the next morning there was already a SIGNIFICANT change in my skin. In ONE DAY!!! The whole side of my face cleared up. I couldn't believe it. Empowered by my quick success, I decided that I was done with dairy if it would fix my skin. Although it was a lot more difficult than I had originally thought it would be, I powered on and months later my skin was better but still not perfect and now I was stressed about my eating. I needed a new course of action.
I have always had very sensitive skin so I decided to go to an allergist - maybe I had developed a reaction to something in my products. The allergist confirmed this could be highly likely and we did a patch test. All negative. Out of options, I decided to finally go to a dermatologist.
Within 10 seconds she diagnosed me with acne rosacea, told me to read about all the triggers (dairy was one of them), and told me that I was welcome to try and solve this issue without antibiotics but if I waited too long the only way to remove the rosacea from my skin might be lasers. Ugh. I begrudgingly gave in to the antibiotics. She told me it could take them up to two months (!!!!!) to resolve the issue. I knew then and there that there was no way I'd put myself on antibiotics for that long. There had to be a better way.
I had already found LED light therapy and done the one month protocol which got rid of the worst parts (see below) so I decided to try the antibiotic for a few weeks and see if I could get everything to finally go away. I only used the LED now on wrinkle mode (red light dominant) because I figured the antibiotic was working. It wasn't. After a few weeks I saw no discernable change from when I was doing the acne LED treatments so I stopped using the antibiotic and went back to using the LED on acne mode only if I felt a flare-up coming.
I am still learning to manage my rosacea. Sometimes I will eat something that will trigger it or maybe I'll eat too much of something that is OK only in small quantities. There is a lot of trial and error but my skin is infinitely better using light therapy. I honestly don't know what I would have done without it - I am sure I would have been stuck on drugs from the dermatologist, bouncing from one to the next trying to find one that would work for me.
Here is the before and after so you can see what my rosacea used to look like. The "before" is untreated and consuming very limited amounts of dairy. The "after" was taken the morning after my fourth LED treatment (I did the 12 sessions of the 1 month protocol in 12 days - I wanted results FAST!) still consuming limited dairy.
This picture is from today after eating large quantities of dairy products every day for four days straight. (When I say large, I mean having at least one serving of dairy with every single meal as opposed to maybe eating it at one meal normally.) For these four days, I did an LED session on acne mode each day - this picture was taken before my last LED session on day four.
Just to be clear, everyone is different and everyone's case is different. This is my story and what worked for me. Our LED panel is not FDA approved to treat rosacea.
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