Blepharitis is a very common eye condition that affects lots of people in the UK – but it’s also one that many individuals know very little about.
Because we want our patients to be as informed as possible about their eye health, we’re running through the basics of blepharitis, from its first symptoms right through to treatment and aftercare.
Should you ever suffer from this irritating condition, you’ll be able to give us a call right away so we can get it under control and give you back clear, comfortable vision.
What is blepharitis?
Blepharitis is an uncomfortable inflammatory eye condition, which causes the eyelids to become red and swollen.
Its most obvious symptoms are:
- Itchy red eyelids
- Stickiness near eyelashes
- Greasy or crusty eyes
- Flaking skin around the eyes
- Sensitivity to light
- Gritty, stinging or burning feeling in and around the eyes
- Loss of eyelashes or eyelashes growing in unusually
One of the things that makes blepharitis so uncomfortable for the sufferer is that symptoms tend to be worse in the morning. Although they’ll progressively ease off as the day goes on, waking up with irritated or sore eyes isn’t pleasant.
What causes blepharitis?
Although blepharitis is incredibly common, it doesn’t seem to be caused by one identifiable factor.
Rather, there are a variety of factors thought to contribute to the condition, including:
- The eyelids contain several small Meibomian glands, which can easily be blocked by flaky or greasy skin
- Staphylococcus bacteria is always present on the skin but can sometimes cause low-grade infections or reactions on the eyelids
- Other conditions, like rosacea or seborrheic dermatitis, that upset the skin’s oil production
- Hayfever and allergies to things like contact lenses or makeup
How is blepharitis treated?
Blepharitis is persistent and stubborn so requires ongoing treatment to reduce its symptoms and side effects.
Normally, regularly cleansing the eye area (taking special care to gently remove cosmetic products) can help minimise blepharitis and prevent it from occurring again.
In more severe cases, prescriptions for antibiotics or steroids will be necessary to bring the inflammation down.
Because of the chronic nature of blepharitis, it’s essential you seek help and follow the advice of our optometrists to keep its irritating and painful symptoms under control.
If you’re concerned that you may be suffering from blepharitis, please make an appointment with one of our experienced opticians.
Call us on 01892 458901 and a friendly member of the team will book you in for an eye health check-up or click here to send us a message and we will get back to you.