Ailment: Blepharitis (red eyelid margins)
Remedy: Antibacterial cleaner
You can buy proprietary eyelid cleaners over the counter. They come in a small can with a press top. Shake the can and press the top to get a small handful of foam. Gently use clean fingers to rub the foam into the edges of the eyelids when you are in the shower. Leave for a minute before rinsing off. These cleaners have anti-bacterial and sometimes anti-fungal properties. Unfortunately they usually contain a long list of chemical ingredients.
Comment posted by Sammy of Nashville, TN, USA on 2 November 2018 at 15:13 5095
I have mites in my eyelashes causing red swollen eyelids (blepharitis). The mites can be painlessly wiped away with a cotton pad wet with eyewash solution. Check the ingredients - you want the kind containing a small amount of boric acid. I use the Kroger generic brand. Your eyes nose and ears can all be connected with tiny tubes who knew? Yes I found some in my nose. My eye-ear-nose-throat doctor approved my use of Kroger brand eye wash in a Neti pot. I diluted it 50-50 with water.
Cliradex eye wipes were recommended to me by an eyelash-eyelid specialist, and they gave me good results. I wipe my lash areas on both eyes, then use the rest of the tiny towelette to wipe the rest of my face. Went to the movies. Returned home and saw these little dried up lines at the edges of my eyelashes. Dead and dried demodex! Only available online not cheap $40 for 24 wipes, so I cut the pads in half and crimp the remaining portion of towelette for use later. I use it twice a day. I also put castor oil on my lashes and in my eyes an hour or two after the Cliradex to ensure they won’t go walking on my face. I’ve only been using Cliradex a week but they recommend 120 days. It contains the active ingredient in tea tree oil but doesn’t burn as much. Don’t get it on your eye, though!
Getting doctors to listen. I started trying to collect samples to show doctors. It’s not easy but you have to try. I started putting them in little plastic salad dressing containers with rubbing alcohol. I bought a pocket microscope with light online for $20 and some blue plastic surgical gloves and I took these with my samples to the doctor. Take care to pick them up without squishing them. You can dip a blue plastic gloved finger into your sample container of rubbing alcohol and pull out a demodex mite on the glove which can be then easily viewed under a microscope right there on the blue glove. First doctor before I brought samples thought I needed psychological meds, but I went to a different doctor and I bring samples and a microscope and they listen to me. This was how I got my referral to an eyelash and eyelid specialist! I didn’t know there was such a thing.
Comment posted by Brandiwine40 of Smyrna, Tennessee , USA on 2 November 2017 at 10:35 4813
I've discovered that antibacterial liquid soap has improved my blepharitis. I started with a flare up on Sunday, October 29th, started using the antibacterial soap with a lukewarm wash cloth and two days later the pain is quickly disappearing.
Comment posted by Lauren of Long Island, New York, USA on 31 August 2015 at 13:5 3614
Wet Ones Antibacterial Hand Wipes cured my blepharitis. There are 24 wipes in the box and the active ingredient is Benzethonium Chloride 0.3%, which is an anti-bacterial product used on the skin to fight bacteria. A box of individually wrapped Antibacterial Hand Wipes is $2.28 at the supermarket.
Here is how I use the Antibacterial Wipes:
Clean a pair of scissors with alcohol and the outside of the single hand wipe packet with alcohol as well. Do not take the hand wipe out of the packet. Cut one packet into 8 pieces and leave the outside packet material on the "mini-wipes" to keep them moist. Put the "mini-wipes" into a small sealable snack bag, seal the bag with the back of a fingernail to make sure it is sealed well. It is very easy to open this bag and use the "mini-wipes" over many days - they keep very moist.
I do the following routine first thing in the morning and last thing at night. If I have time in the middle of the day, will also do it then as well, but usually it is just two times a day. The lady who originally wrote about this method did it 4 times a day and then cut down to 3 times a day, then 2 times a day over a period of three months. I just couldn't keep to that schedule, so am doing the routine 2 times a day. I have currently completed one month of this routine and the itchy eyes, redness, tearing, and crusty eyelids are gone! I will continue this cleaning routine for at least two more months. The steaming is so relaxing, so I may continue with that forever!
Wash whole face with your regular mild soap and rinse off. Dry face.
"Steam" eyes with a heating pad - you can either use one that is made for the eyes or use something you have already. I warm up a fabric bag of beans in the microwave that my sister gave me. Once the bag is heated, I wrap a wet washcloth around the heated bag and lay down for 5-10 minutes with the warm washcloth gizmo on my eyes - it is a nice relaxing way to start and end my day. It also loosens up any gunk on the eyelashes and eyes in the morning.
After steaming my eyes, I close my eyes and wash my eyelids with a dab of tea tree oil soap on a washcloth, rubbing the soap on my eyelashes and eyelids, maybe 10 back and forth swipes. I rinse my eyes with warm water so that no soap suds remain. Dry face with a clean cloth.
(I use a Tea Tree Oil Body Wash, very inexpensive at $3.47 for 24 ounces at the largest store around that starts with a "W", but there are many Tea Tree Oil soaps out there).
I wipe my eyelashes with a "mini-wipe" section, brushing the eyelid margins and eyelashes well, left and right, then up and down. You will eventually find out the best way for you to wipe your own eyelashes. After finishing with the eyelashes, I use the "mini-wipe" on my eyebrows (because I'm going to throw the used wipe away anyway and the eyebrows can harbor bacteria / mites as well as eyelashes). I do not rinse my eyes with water after using the "mini-wipe". Some people who have tender skin can rinse with water after waiting 10 minutes. The 10 minute time is so that they antibacterial ingredient has time to fight the bacteria / mites on the eyelashes. When you do this routine correctly, the antibacterial ingredient should not get IN your eyes, it will just be on your eyelashes and the base of the eyelashes. This is where bacteria harbors. If some of the antibacterial ingredient gets in your eyes and it burns, just splash your eyes with water. As you do this daily, you will get more adept at using the "mini-wipes" and it will seem very easy to do.
I do this routine two to three times a day, depending on what is going on in my life. No matter what, I start my day doing this and also the last thing at night. My eyes feel amazing and the excess tearing, itching, and redness cleared up after a week of using the antibacterial wipes. This is SO MUCH BETTER than taking antibiotics, going off them, having the blepharitis come back, then suffering for a while, going back to the eye doctor, then going back on antibiotics!
Before I found the information on using the antibacterial wipes, I spend lots of money on doctors appointments and prescriptions, and I still had blepharitis.
The "mini-wipes" routine costs about $6 to try for 3 months, a small price to pay for beautifully clean eyes. A box of antibacterial wipes costs $2.28 and will make 192 "mini-wipes", plus the $3.47 for the tea tree oil soap. You don't have to buy a special heating pad, but if you do, that is less than $9.
I hope that this information helps someone else that is suffering as much as I was with blepharitis.
Comment posted by Linda of Kansas City, MO, USA on 12 October 2013 at 5:46 1459
There is a new treatment out there called Blephex. My eye doctor cleaned my eyelids and lashes with a handheld spinning device. I was very skeptical at first but it really works, I felt an immediate relief. He dipped the instrument in a solution that included macadamia oil which is suppose to be less irritating to the eye than the tea tree oil. I will be coming back every 6 months to repeat the blephex procedure in order to to stay free from demodex infestation.
Comment posted by David of Perth, WA, Australia on 30 March 2010 at 22:54 20
I tried a container of proprietary eyelid cleaner. Used it every day or two, and it lasted a couple of months. It was quite effective at cleaning, and there was a very slight improvement in the redness of my eyes. However, I was worried about the list of chemicals in the ingredients on the can.