If you’ve ever experienced blepharitis, you know how irritating this eye condition can be. Blepharitis is characterized by inflamed eyelids and dandruff-like scales on a person’s eyelashes. Although the condition usually cannot be treated permanently and typically reappears, it is still important to know what you can do when it flares up. According to the American Optometric Association, the key is to be vigilant about keeping your eyelids clean and free of crust. Crusts can be loosened and removed through warm compresses or gentle scrubbing with baby shampoo.
To use a warm compress, all you need is a washcloth. Dampen the cloth with warm water and gently press it over your eye for five minutes. You can repeat this process as needed throughout the day to help loosen the crusty materials. To scrub your eyes, mix warm water with a small amount of baby shampoo and use a clean washcloth to rub the mixture across your eyelashes and the edge of your eyelid. You can also use a special lid scrub solution given by your optometrist. After gently scrubbing your lashes, rinse well with clean water. The most important thing is to be careful to only use clean materials around your eye. Do not reuse washcloths or share makeup or other eye products with anyone else.
Additional suggestions for treating blepharitis include:
- Massaging the eyelids to unblock affected glands
- Using artificial tears
- Washing your hair with anti-dandruff shampoo
- Temporarily avoiding makeup, since it can compromise the hygiene of your eye area
- Temporarily avoiding contact lenses to avoid further irritation
It is important that you schedule an appointment with an optometrist on your True Care Advantage plan to develop a customized treatment plan for you. He or she can help you get your blepharitis under control and restore your quality of life.