Blepharitis is an eye condition that is characterized by the inflammation of the eye lids. The swelling usually occurs right where the eyelashes grow on the eyelid. The main cause for Blepharitis can be attributed to a malfunction in the oil glands located at the base of the lashes. This malfunction causes the eyelids to inflame, which is then later followed by persistent itching and irritation.
Some of the other common symptoms of the condition include reddish discoloration in the eyes, watery eyes, burning sensation near the inflamed eyelid, greasy looking eyelids, skin flaking near the eyelids, sticky eyelids, crusted eyelids, increased sensitivity to light, frequent blinking of the eyelids, misdirected growth of eyelashes and even loss of lashes etc.
Home Remedies For Blepharitis
Even though Blepharitis does not cause any serious or permanent damage to the eyes, it is mostly a chronic condition that keeps recurring without proper care. In addition to medications prescribed for the treatment of the condition, there are certain home remedies that would reduce its symptoms to a great extent. Given below are some of the most recommended home remedies for Blepharitis.
In case you get Blepharitis due to the presence of lice, use petroleum jelly to thwart the condition and its symptoms. Dab a good amount of petroleum jelly at the base of the inflamed eyelids, and along the eyelashes to get rid of the lice first (the lice would get suffocated in the jelly).
Wash the inflamed eyelids with lukewarm water afterwards until the petroleum jelly is completely rinsed off. Keep repeating this remedy at least once a day to get rid of the lice infesting your eyelashes and prevent them from recurring. This in turn would treat Blepharitis and its symptoms effectively.
Regular shampoo would be too concentrated and can possibly irritate the eyelids. You can opt for baby shampoo instead which is comparatively gentler on the skin. Add a few drops of baby shampoo in a small cup and add double the amount of water to dilute it. Dip a washcloth into the diluted shampoo solution and clean the inflamed eyelids with it. Rinse your eyes in warm water afterwards.
Alternatively, you can use a cotton bud to clean your eyelids with baby shampoo as well. Boil some water in a vessel. Add a few drops of the baby shampoo to a small cup and swish the ends of the cotton bud in it. Now place the bud inside the water and leave the solution for about 30 minutes.
Soak both ends of another cotton bud in this solution and gently rub the eyelids with it, making sure you cover the eyelids right up to the lashes. Wash your eyes with lukewarm water afterwards. Repeat this procedure at least twice a day to bring down the swelling, itching and irritation to a great extent.
Note: If your eyes start paining or itching the moment you apply the diluted baby shampoo on them, stop immediately.
Castor Oil is also considered to be a very effective home remedy for Blepharitis in individuals. Applying castor oil regularly to the affected eyelids can bring down the pain, itching, irritation and inflammation to a great extent.
Accordingly, soak the ends of a cotton bud in castor oil and rub them gently along the inflamed eyelids. Repeat the procedure for about 10-15 minutes at least twice a day for extended relief from the symptoms of Blepharitis, including irritation, swelling and tearing etc.
Cleaning The Eyes Regularly
If you are suffering from Blepharitis, you need to clean your eyes regularly and keep them clean for extended periods. An appropriate way to clean the eyes involves placing a warm compress (usually a towel dipped in hot water) on the inflamed eyelid for about 20 minutes. The warmth would loosen the crusts formed on your eyelids overnight.
This is then followed by soaking a towel in warm water and gently rubbing away the scaly patches and oil residues deposited at the base of the eyelashes. In the case where the inflammation is located very close to the eyelashes, you would need to gently pull back the eyelid wash the affected area with the cloth. Be very gentle as you clean your eyes this way as even the slightest of mistakes could damage the cornea.
Placing warm tea bags over the inflamed eyelids can bring down the irritation and swelling caused by Blepharitis to a great extent. Wash the affected eyelids with a warm water and a gentle soap.
Now boil a tea bag in water for about 15 minutes and let it cool down. Place the warm tea bag over the inflamed eyelids to reduce the swelling and loosen the crust formed on the eyelashes.
Dandruff Free Shampoos
Conditions like dandruff, eczema and dermatitis etc. can also cause Blepharitis in certain cases. As such, taking care of the underlying condition would automatically treat Blepharitis and its symptoms. Accordingly, opt for a good quality dandruff free shampoo to get rid of the dandruff in your hair. With time and regular use, the shampoo would get rid of the dandruff, thereby bringing down the symptoms of Blepharitis to a great extent in addition to preventing recurrences.
Tea Tree Oil
Essential and aromatic oils have healing properties that can help reduce the itching, irritation and inflammation caused by Blepharitis. You would need to dilute tree tea oil before using it as it can sting the skin. Blend a few drops of tea tree oil with a few drops of vegetable oil.
Dab a cotton bud into the resultant mix and rub it gently across the inflamed eyelids (pull the eyelids away from the eyes gently as you do so). Be careful not to touch the eyes as it may cause a stinging sensation. Wash your eyelids with lukewarm water after about 20 minutes. Repeat this procedure at least twice a day to get rid of Blepharitis and its symptoms effectively.
Heavy layers of makeup can aggravate the oil glands near the base of the lashes and would cause Blepharitis in addition to worsening an existing condition. It can also make it harder for you to clean the area. So avoid wearing makeup (even organic makeup) until the condition is completely cured.