Blepharitis is an inflammation of the eyelids and affects one in three people in the UK (NHS Choices UK, 2015). It can make eyelids red and eyelashes crusty and make your eyes feel irritated or crusty. Symptoms tend to be worse in the morning, when you wake up you may find your lids are stuck together. The cause of blepharitis is not known in most cases but, although it is not an infection, it can be caused by a reaction to the bacteria that live naturally on the eyelid skin.
Blepharitis can develop at any age but is more common in people aged over 50. It is not usually serious, but can produce a lot of symptoms and can make people unable to wear contact lenses comfortably.
Many people with blepharitis also have dry eyes, a condition where the eyes do not produce enough tears or dry out too quickly.
‘I examine a number of patients with blepharitis and have seen good results when patients use warm compresses followed by a regular lid cleaning routine using cooled boiled water to which is added a teaspoon of Johnsons baby shampoo. This solution is then applied to the roots of the lashes with a cotton bud.”