Blepharitis

·        Blepharitis is inflammation of the eyelid’s oil glands and skin.

·        Using a microscope, your doctor can see swollen oil glands in the eyelid margins.  

·        There is no known cause.

·        It is very common, especially in people with a skin condition called rosacea.

·        It is chronic – there is no cure, but the condition can be controlled very well.

·        It usually takes several weeks of treatment before you will start to feel better.

·        EyeDropAlarm is a free app created by Dr. Shah to remind you to do your treatment.  Download it from www.eyedropalarm.com.  Look for “Lid compresses” or “Lid scrubs” in the app’s database.

 

Warm Compresses

·        Take a washcloth and soak it in warm water.  Place the warm washcloth on top both of your eyelids with your eyes closed for 5 minutes.  Do this in the morning and at bedtime.  Once you feel better, reduce the compresses to once at bedtime to control the blepharitis.

·        If the washcloth gets cool during the 5 minutes, soak it again in warm water and put it back on top of both eyelids.  One option is to wrap the washcloth around a warm microwaveable heat gel pack so that it stays warm for the entire 5 minutes.

·        Another option is to fill a sock with dry, uncooked rice grains.  Tie a knot at the end of the sock.  Put the sock in the microwave to warm it and then place it on the eyelids.

·        If your eyes feel irritated, you can use artificial tears to lubricate the eyes as needed.  Systane Balance Lubricant Eye Drops (Restorative Formula) is one type of artificial tear specifically designed for blepharitis.

 

Lid Scrubs

·        ­If warm compresses alone are not controlling your symptoms, you should add daily lid scrubs to your treatment using over-the-counter cleansing pads or spray.

·        Suggested brands

o   Ocusoft Lid Scrub

o   Blink Lid Wipes

o   Thera Tears SteriLid 

o   Cliradex    (available at www.cliradex.com)

 

Severe or Persistent Symptoms

·        An antibiotic ointment at bedtime can sometimes help.

·        Other medications that may help include a tablet called Doxycycline to be taken once a day and Restasis or Xiidra eyedrops.