Blepharitis can be an embarrassing and sometimes painful disease. So, what are some blepharitis natural treatments? First, let's better understand blepharitis.
An inflammation of the eyelids, it can affect both these and the area where your eyelashes grow. It tends to occur when the tiny oil glands at the base of the eyelashes become clogged, and can lead to irritation and sore, red eyes. It can be caused by various diseases and conditions.
Although a chronic condition which some sufferers bemoan as impossible to treat, blepharitis is difficult to get rid of but can be dealt with, meaning that it’s important not to become disheartened and think that you’ll have to live with it forever.
Nor will it cause any permanent damage to your eyesight, or spread to anyone else, despite some common misconceptions.
Although some people may need to resort to seeing a doctor, most of the time blepharitis can be alleviated simply by following the self-care measures listed below.
Strictly adhering to a good hygiene routine is one of the most effective ways to combat blepharitis, which is why we suggest cleaning your eyes daily, especially during flare-ups. When the condition is at its worst, here is the routine we recommend.
Begin by applying a warm compress over your closed eyes, leaving it in place for several minutes. This should help to loosen any crusty deposits that have built up. Once done, immediately apply warm water and a few drops of baby shampoo to a washcloth. Use this to remove any oily debris or scales at the base of your eyelashes. A different cloth should be used for each eye.
In some instances, the above simply won’t be sufficient, and you’ll have to be more deliberate about what you’re doing. You may have to gently pull your eyelid up and away from your eye, rubbing the base of the lashes with a washcloth.
Finally, use warm water to rinse your eyelids, before lightly patting dry with a clean towel.
This process should be performed two to four times a day when your condition is at its worst, and then once or twice daily once the blepharitis is under control.
We understand that the pressures of society can make many women feel uncomfortable without makeup, but if possible, we suggest that you stop using eye makeup during periods of inflammation.
The reasons for this are two-fold: firstly, it can make it more difficult to keep your eyelids clean and free of debris, and secondly, it can reintroduce bacteria to the area, and in the most extreme cases, cause an allergic reaction.
If you need something stronger than warm water and laying off the eye makeup, but don’t want to resort to medication, castor oil is also worth trying. One of the most effective natural remedies for blepharitis, it has both anti-inflammatory and anti-oxidant properties.
Using a dropper bottle or cotton swab, apply one to two drops to your eyelids, and blink several times to spread it around. Put a sleep mask on overnight to stop you from rubbing the oil off (this should be disinfected every day during flare-ups), and it should soon clear up. Continue to do this even once it has gone and the condition should stay away permanently.
Manuka honey is another natural remedy that you may want to experiment with. A powerful antibacterial agent, it helps to both fight infections and retain moisture, making it an ideal antidote to blepharitis.
To treat your condition, apply the honey to the affected area, leaving it in place for 10 minutes or so before washing it off. If you prefer, you can leave a small amount on overnight, although you might find that you rub this off as you sleep. You’ll usually begin to see a positive resolution to the problem within 48 hours.
Alternatively, you may want to try treating the condition from the inside out by increasing your omega 3 intake. Ideal for keeping your skin soft and healthy, a diet that is rich in it can help to prevent your eyelids from drying out, as well as reducing inflammation.
It has also been suggested that this can help to keep your Meibomian glands moist, preventing clogging in the future.
If these remedies fail to help, it may be time to consult your doctor.