Reducing chronic facial blushing

While many people experience blushing when embarrassed or overheated, for some people the condition can become a chronic source of stress and can lead to them not participating fully in normal life events. Here are some of the options if you are a severe blusher. 


Most people have certain triggers which make their blushing worse, including stress, exercise and alcohol. It can often help to reduce exposure to these causes, such as only exercising by yourself or in a cold environment such as a swimming pool. Often, counselling can help with stress, and many people find relaxation exercises can also help. 

For some patients, the embarrassment of blushing can create a vicious cycle where they become stressed that they may start blushing at an important occasion such a job interview, public speaking or during a wedding. This can make them more likely to blush in this circumstance, so counselling can be an important tool in managing blushing. 


Many users also like to try and disguise their blushing through cosmetics and high necked shirts or scarves. However, this can be tricky depending on your job role and the overall climate that you live in. 


There are several medications which can help with blushing such as beta blockers, which act to reduce blood pressure. These can have some serious effects on the user's overall vascular condition, so it's important to only take these under the supervisions of a vascular specialist. Some specialists also recommend trying botox injections, which can limit facial blushing and can last for up to six months. These also limit overall muscle movement and texture in the face which may or may not be desirable. 


In cases of severe facial blushing, particularly when accompanied by sweating, the surgeon may recommend a sympathectomy where the sympathetic nerves that control the supply of blood to the area are ablated (removed by a laser). This means that the body cannot trigger blushing in the area that is operated on (generally the face and neck). This is generally successful but is only recommended in cases where other nonsurgical techniques have been tried and have not been successful in reducing the blushing. 

If you have severe facial blushing, you should make an appointment to discuss this with your doctor, who can refer you to specialists such as a vascular surgeon. There is a range of treatments available, so there is no need to suffer in silence.