Blepharitis is a condition that causes soreness, redness and
inflammation of the eyelid margins. It can start in early
childhood or later in life and has a tendency to recur intermittently.
For most patients it is bothersome but not serious.
How do I know I have blepharitis?
Blepharitis usually causes the eyes to feel sore, itchy and
generally uncomfortable. The area around the eyelashes may
appear red and inflamed and you may be able to see small flakes
of debris around the base of the eyelashes. The eyes may feel
dry and sometimes the vision can be a little blurred because
of the irritation.
Some patients find that their eyelids may be a little stuck
together in the morning and need to bathe them to get them
How is blepharitis treated?
In most cases the symptoms will improve significantly with
the following simple measures :
• Cleaning the eyelids gently with a solution of cool
boiled water with a little baby shampoo or sodium bicarbonate
• Gentle lid massage with a warm hand towel
• Applying antibiotic ointment to the eyelids
• Using artificial tear drops
The lid cleaning should be continued on a long-term basis
to prevent the symptoms returning
In more resistant cases a short course of oral antibiotics
may be required.