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This is a work in progress.
Cognitive Behavioral Therapy
Psychiatrist should have a strong interest or expertise in treating phobias particularly social phobia or anxiety disorder.
SSRI’s commonly used for treating Social Anxiety Disorder (SAD)
-sertraline (Zoloft) only SSRI that has been researched for blushing
SNSRI’s also used in treating SAD
Beta Blockers - commonly used by people when speaking in front of large groups or other anxiety producing events.
(We have read CEO’s and actors have been using this for years with great success)
WE DO NOT ENDORSE ANY PHARMECEUTICALS. We provide this information simply as a service to others who may not be aware of treatment options available. All medications should be taken under the supervision of a physician. Many medications interact with others you may be taking, so make sure to tell your physician every medication you are currently taking.
Endoscopic Thoracic Sympathectomy (ETS Surgery)
This surgery should be considered a last resort and not everyone is a candidate. Surgery as a treatment should always be considered carefully as there are always side affects. While we have heard that the surgery has become less invasive over recent years, thereby reducing some risks associated, there are still side effects reported by most patients. Some side effects are minor, compared to chronic/pathological blushing, but others are significant such as increased sweating in the torso.
We have listed several doctors that we felt had the most experience or whom had performed surgery on people who had emailed us and they recommended them. There, of course, are many others around the country. If you are looking for an ETS Surgeon, you may have to look under Hyperhidrosis (excessive sweating) as this surgery is done more commonly for that condition. The risks are said to be slightly higher for ETS for blushing, so make sure your choice of surgeon has performed the surgery on patients for blushing.
WE DO NOT ENDORSE ANY SURGEON. We are not medical professionals. We simply provide this information as a service to others who may not be aware of treatment options available. Please do your research before undertaking treatment.
David H. Nielson, MD
Information on treatment possibilities
Dr. Lyall Gorenstein
Alternative or Complimentary Treatments
Information provided in this section has not been researched or been proven to be effective. We provide this as a service so that you may know what others have used and claim to have had some success with.
A good starting point would be to research dietary, herbal or supplement choices that support a healthy nervous system, as there is a link between chronic blushing and an overactive sympathetic nervous system. Understand that even herbal treatments and other supplements can be harmful, particularly when combined with pharmaceuticals. Take under the direction of a doctor.
- Herbal Medicines
- Dietary Choices
We received one claim by a chronic blushing sufferer that magnesium supplements helped reduce his blushing symptoms. We cannot substantiate this claim. We have provided a link on the links tab to some research that claims that many people are deficient in magnesium for various reasons. Magnesium is responsible for hundreds of bodily functions including nervous system health. Note that you should see a doctor to determine if you are deficient and make sure it is safe for you before undertaking supplementation of magnesium. It is possible to overdose on magnesium with possibly dangerous consequences.
WE ARE NOT DOCTORS. WE PROVIDE THIS INFORMATION AS A GUIDE TO HELP YOU OR YOUR LOVED ONES MORE READILY UNDERSTAND CHRONIC BLUSHING AND CURRENTLY AVAILABLE OPTIONS TO TREAT. WE ARE NOT A RESEARCH FACILITY AND THEREFORE DO NOT HAVE IMMEDIATE ACCESS TO ALL AVAILABLE INFORMATION ON THIS CONDITION. WE PROVIDE THIS INFORMATION NOT AS A DEFINITIVE SOURCE OF ALL INFORMATION ON THE TOPIC, BUT RATHER A SOURCE TO HELP YOU BEGIN YOUR RESEARCH. WE DO NOT PROMOTE ANY TREATMENT OPTIONS BUT RATHER SHARE INFORMATION WE HAVE BEEN PROVIDED. WE CANNOT VERIFY THE EFFECTIVENESS OR RISKS OF TREATMENT OPTIONS. THIS IS UP TO YOU.
Before seeking treatment for your blushing:
It is important to understand that all people who blush frequently and are negatively affected by blushing episodes are not necessarily Chronic/Pathological Blushers. In order to treat your blushing, you must first honestly analyze your situation to determine the root cause of your blushing. You need to determine if your blushing can be treated psychologically, physiologically or both.
Did you have anxiety in social situations prior to blushing becoming an issue?
If so, you may have Social Anxiety Disorder SAD. This may be your root cause for blushing. Seek treatment with a psychiatrist that specializes in SAD. See links to better understand SAD.
Is your social anxiety due to a fear of blushing (erythrophobia) alone?
If so, you should seek treatment from a psychiatrist that specializes in phobias. Also, you should see below. Your fear may have developed because you are physiologically prone to blush. If you believe this may be the case, see below.
Were you a socially comfortable person that began blushing around puberty? Do you have Raynauds (fingers that turn white in cold or mildly cold temperatures)? Do you have hyper-hydrosis, sweating excessively on hands or other parts of body?
If any of the above are true, you may be genetically predisposed to blush due to an overactive sympathetic nervous system. In this case, physiological treatment options include medication; SSRI’s and/or beta-blockers or ETS surgery. Psychiatry is also indicated due to the psychological damage this condition can cause.
Possible Treatment Options:
SOCIAL ANXIETY DISORDER (SAD)
1. Cognitive Behavioral Therapy
3. Anti-Anxiety medications and/or Beta Blockers
CHRONIC BLUSHING with Raynauds or Hyper-hidrosis
1. Cognitive Behavioral Therapy
3. Anti-Anxiety / Anti-Depression Medications (SSRI’s) and/or Beta Blockers
4. ETS surgery