All You Need to Know about Blepharitis

Blepharitis is the medical term for inflammation of the eyelids, which causes redness, itching, crusting on eyelashes and inflamed eyelids. Chronic blepharitis can lead to dry eyes, watery eyes, eye irritation and even blurring of vision. Blepharitis is a common eyelid disorder that is not contagious and can affect people of all ages.

The various causes of blepharitis include:

  1. Blocked oil glands on the eyelid (Meibomian gland dysfunction)
  2. Other underlying skin conditions (seborrheic dermatitis, rosacea, eczema)
  3. Mites infestation (Demodex blepharitis)
  4. Bacterial infection

How is blepharitis treated?

Blepharitis is typically a chronic condition and may be a recurring problem.

Medications such as eye drops or eye ointments are prescribed by your eye doctor to fight off any bacterial or mite infection and reduce inflammation. In office treatments such as intense pulsed light (IPL), low level light therapy (LLLT), and diligent warm compresses at home are helpful for people with meibomian gland dysfunction causing blepharitis or dry eyes.

The best way to avoid blepharitis and prevent recurrence is to practise consistent good lid hygiene. Be sure to remove all eye makeup residue and clean your eyelids daily with eyelid cleansing foam or scrub to prevent the build-up of bacteria and mites on the eyelid margin.

A Step-by-step Guide on Proper Warm Compress for Blepharitis / MGD

  1. Boil water and let it cool down to about 50 degrees celsius
  2. Soak a face towel into the water and wring it dry
  3. Fold and bundle the face towel into a small rectangle appropriate to cover both eyes
  4. Close both eyes and place the towel over 
  5. Let it sit for about 5 to 10mins 
  6. Repeat this twice a day for minimum 4 weeks for maximum effect

If you are using a heated eye mask, make sure to wash the cover before every use.

Another alternative is to use a disposable heated eye mask.

  1. Activate the heating component from the mask
  2. Close both eyes and place eye mask over 
  3. Leave it on for 10mins
  4. Repeat this twice a day for minimum 4 weeks for maximum effect

Remember that compliance to continuous good lid hygiene is key to success to eradicate blepharitis or dry eyes caused by meibomian gland dysfunction.




Ophthalmologist and Eye Specialist Singapore


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