The eyelids with their eyelashes and glands (sebaceous and sweat) and the lachrymal sac are structures protecting the eye, which are part of the area known as the periocular area. There are various ophthalmological conditions affecting this periocular area. In order to treat it correctly, it is essential to perform specific eye hygiene measures with products that do not cause irritation or allergy, and which promote healing.
An inflamed, reddened and irritated eyelid, especially in the part where the eyelashes start, should make us suspect that there is a blepharitis issue.
There are several causes that may be related to the appearance of blepharitis. Skin type, seborrhea, uncorrected refractive defects, a hypersecretion of the eyelid glands, and external stimuli such as dust, smoke, or air conditioning are factors that frequently contribute to the persistence of this type of chronic eyelid inflammation.
Symptoms of blepharitis
The most characteristic symptom of blepharitis is eyelid inflammation and redness, which is often accompanied by itching and burning in the affected area.
This disease can also be accompanied by the presence of other symptoms such as the appearance of dandruff on the eyelashes or crusting, tearing and a gritty sensation when blinking.
With blepharitis, removing excess flaking and organic remains and reducing the inflammation and irritation is necessary.
How to prevent blepharitis.
A good eye hygiene routine is an essential part of blepharitis treatment.
- Eyelid and eyelash hygiene should be performed daily and as many times as necessary.
- Specific products should be used for eye cleansing. Washing with water and salt or chamomile is not recommended under any circumstances.
- When cleansing eyelids and eyelashes, different single-use wipes or gauzes should be used for each eye.
- Gently rub along the entire upper and lower eyelid, from the inside outwards, as well as the lashes.
- In addition to cleansing the eyelids and eyelashes daily, applying hot compresses on the eyelids may be useful in some cases, to help with drainage and the release of fat accumulated in the meibomian glands.
Forcibly blinking and massaging the eyelids are measures, besides hygiene, that can also contribute to improving the symptoms of blepharitis. To massage the eyelids, the simplest technique is to press the upper eyelids lightly with your fingertips in a downwards motion, and in an upwards motion for the lower eyelids.
On the other hand, to prevent possible complications from blepharitis, it is important to consider the following preventive measures:
- If the eyelids are itchy, you should not rub your eyes with your hands, as they can be a source of infection and transfer it from one eye to another.
- If blepharitis has caused the eyelashes to fall out, there are creams that help to regenerate them.
- The inflammation of the eyelids can be caused by different cosmetic substances that, when in contact with the eye, can cause an allergic reaction. To minimise this risk, it is important to use specific make-up and cosmetics for sensitive eyes.
If blepharitis is accompanied by a bacterial infection, it will be necessary to see a specialist to assess treatment with a cream or oral antibiotics.