What is blepharitis?
Blepharitis is inflammation of the eyelid, which causes a burning sensation, redness, and edema. It can be acute or chronic and must be treated accordingly. Thus, several treatments can be used, ranging from simple artificial tears combined with standard hygiene measures to antibiotics or corticosteroids.
What are the causes of blepharitis?
Blepharitis is an inflammation of the sebaceous glands behind the eyelashes that produce the outer layer of tears. When blepharitis occurs, the oils produced by these glands do not flow freely, and the openings of the glands block.
If the problem is left untreated, these glands can become irritated and even infected. Eyelashes may fall out, and there may be painful swelling of the eyelids or repeated styes. Small dandruff-like fragments can be found at the base of the eyelashes. Many people complain that their eyes burn more in the morning when they get up and their eyelids are stuck together. There are several causes for the inflammation of these glands. Blepharitis often appears in people who tend to have oily skin and dandruff. Age is not associated with the onset of blepharitis.
How to treat blepharitis?
Since blepharitis is a chronic problem, it is incurable. Even though there are over-the-counter treatments, it is recommended that you see your optometrist so that they can diagnose the problem. There are several ways to treat blepharitis. First, clean the dry residue around the lashes at least twice a day with warm compresses (a clean washcloth soaked in hot water) to help keep the lashes clean. This also allows the oily part of the tears to flow more freely.
Commercial eyelid scrubs can also help cleanse better. Scrubs are medicated pads similar to those used to remove makeup from the eyes. Instead of using commercial scrubs, you can dilute a small amount of baby shampoo in a small cup of hot water. Then you apply carefully to the lashes using a cotton ball.
Regardless of the product used, the solution should be gently rinsed off with warm water. Antibiotic ointments applied to the edges of the eyelids can sometimes help manage symptoms of blepharitis. It is also possible to prescribe eye drops and steroid drops. In severe cases, it may be necessary to consider oral antibiotics for treatment.