Blepharitis, which is eyelid inflammation, is not a serious condition, but it is common. About 40-50% of people who visit an ophthalmologist or optometrist have some form of blepharitis.
The other thing you should know about blepharitis is that while it’s unsightly, it’s thankfully not contagious. People with blepharitis usually have red, inflamed bumps and crust on their eyelids on one or both eyes.
Beyond what blepharitis does to your appearance, the expert ophthalmologists and optometrists at ABC Children’s Eye Specialists PC would like you to know the following facts about this condition.
There are two types of blepharitis
Anterior blepharitis affects the front edge of your eyelashes, and posterior blepharitis affects the inner corners of your eyelids. Anterior blepharitis is usually caused by bacteria or dandruff from your scalp or eyebrows.
Posterior blepharitis often develops when your oil-producing glands at the base of your eyelashes become clogged, sending bacteria into your eyes.
Symptoms of blepharitis
Blepharitis can affect one eye, but it usually affects both eyes. It can also affect people of all ages. Symptoms include:
- Feeling of grittiness
- Burning sensations
- Crusty eyelids
- Blurry vision
- Extra tears or dry eyes
Blepharitis treatment options
Treatment options are focused on reducing symptoms and cleaning the bacteria out of your eyes. Warm compresses, cleaning your eyelids gently, and lubricating eye drops can help.
Your doctor may prescribe an antibiotic ointment or medication for more severe cases, to help relieve irritation. Older children should refrain from wearing eye makeup or contacts while the blepharitis clears up.
Keeping your eyes and hair clean can help prevent a blepharitis outbreak. Using anti-dandruff shampoo can prevent dandruff flakes from irritating your eye. Wash your eyes gently and regularly.
Unfortunately, while it’s simple to relieve the symptoms, blepharitis rarely goes away completely. Recurrences are common. Often, blepharitis is considered a chronic condition.
It’s irritating but not damaging
Although recurring cases of blepharitis are uncomfortable, they don’t damage your eyes or vision. It’s essential to see your eye doctor if you think you or your child has blepharitis. Together with your doctor, you can create a plan to reduce symptoms and prevent recurrences.
Again, while blepharitis is more irritating than damaging, it can lead to related eye conditions. Conversely, these eye conditions can also lead to blepharitis. These conditions include a stye, which is red bump on the eyelid; a chalazion, an advanced stye; or abnormal tear film production.
Is your child’s eye red, itchy, and crusty? Call ABC Children’s Eye Specialists PC at our three offices in Phoenix and Mesa, Arizona, to get a proper diagnosis and, most importantly, an effective treatment plan. You can also send a message to the team here on our website.