The Difference Between Rosacea & Eczema

What’s the difference between eczema vs rosacea? We’ll tell you how the two conditions are alike and how they are different. It’s important to know if you have rosacea or eczema, or even some other condition, because not all skin conditions are treated in the same way. In fact, in some cases treatments that help one skin condition can make another skin condition worse. Even though eczema and rosacea sometimes look similar, they are very different conditions.
You can compare eczema vs rosacea in these pictures. Notice the differences as well as the similarities. While both cause reddened skin and may cause acne-like bumps, rosacea isn’t patchy or scaly the way eczema is and eczema doesn’t cause thickened skin, especially around the nose, the way rosacea can. Of course, you might have eczema or rosacea and not look exactly like the people pictured here. Your skin tone, where on your body the condition appears, and other factors can affect the way the conditions look on your body. Keep in mind the fact that some other skin conditions may look similar to these, as well. Talk to your doctor or see a dermatologist, a doctor that specialises in skin disorders, if you have questions about your diagnosis.


Rosacea is a skin disorder that is rarely seen in kids. The majority of people affected by this chronic condition are adults ages 30 to 50. Women are more likely than men to develop it, and fair-skinned, blue-eyed women most of all. Still, children can develop rosacea, although the symptoms are often mistaken for other, more common skin disorders.
Kids with rosacea may appear to blush easily. In more severe cases, rough, red patches of skin may appear on the face, neck and scalp. Pimple-like bumps may also occur. The skin on the face may become very dry or even swell up. Rosacea can also affect the eyes, which is especially serious in children and is called ocular rosacea. Occular rosacea can be severe in children and is often under-diagnosed.This can lead to serious complications if the rosacea has moved to the eyes. In fact, 30 percent of children diagnosed with occular rosacea already had experienced decreased vision. If your child has consistently red, irritated, itchy eyes, develops bumps on the eyelids, and has a family history of rosacea, see a doctor immediately and ask to be tested for occular rosacea.
Rosacea can’t be prevented, but it can be treated. Children with rosacea on their faces should use sunblock to help prevent skin irritation. Older children can use acne medications, which sometimes helps reduce the severity of the symptoms. Topical antibiotics can help reduce the chance of infection in serious cases. Occular rosacea is treated with tetracycline in children over the age of seven (some doctors wait until a child is 10 or even 12), but because this medication can interfere with bone growth, younger children are usually given erythromycin or azithromycin. Warm compresses on the eyes can reduce pain and itching. Some children are placed on oral antibiotics if an infection occurs in the eye.


Eczema usually begins in childhood and adults often do have eczema, but most have had the condition since early to middle childhood. In babies it tends to show up on the cheeks and scalp, but it may spread to the arms, legs, chest, or other parts of the body. After a child’s first year, it’s most likely to show up on the insides of the elbows, the backs of the knees, the wrists, and the ankles, but it can also appear elsewhere.
Symptoms of eczema include red or brown patches on the skin, small bumps that leak fluid and sometimes scab over, severe itching, and cracked or scaly skin. Symptoms of rosacea include a reddened face, small pus-filled bumps that resemble acne, itching or irritated skin, skin that is tender to the touch, and dry, irritated eyes. Eczema most often occurs on the arms, hands, legs and feet, though it can occur elsewhere. Symptoms of eczema are often made worse by things like rapid changes in temperature, stress, contact with wool clothing or blankets, and the use of harsh soaps or detergents.
Moisturisers with ceramides is the best option. These are available over the counter and by prescription. Otherwise, a good moisturiser, fragrance-free cream, or ointment such as petroleum jelly, when used several times daily, will help your baby’s skin retain its natural moisture.
A lukewarm bath. This hydrates and cools the skin. It may also ease itching. Make sure the water isn’t too hot! Keep the bath short — no more than 10 minutes. To soothe itchiness even more, you could try adding oatmeal soaking products to your baby’s tub.
Use mild, unscented body and laundry soaps. Perfumed, deodorant, and anti-bacterial soaps can be rough on a baby’s sensitive skin.
Some over-the-counter products, such as hydrocortisone creams and ointments, target itching and inflammation. Check the instructions and don’t use them too long, or they can thin the skin in the affected area.
Want to know how you can give your baby the best body massage ever? Read more here.
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