Do you ever experience eyelid itching, grittiness, or crusting? How about red, swollen eyes, or light sensitivity? Are you having trouble wearing contact lenses comfortably? If so, you might have an eyelid disease called blepharitis!
Blepharitis is a broad term that describes the swelling (or inflammation) of your eyelids and is actually quite common. Unfortunately, a lack of eyelid hygiene is one of the most common reasons for eye irritation, inflammation, dry eye, and blepharitis. This eyelid condition is hard to manage on a regular daily basis and can also complicate the outcome of cataract surgery, LASIK, or PRK.
Fortunately, there is good news! There are currently a lot of great eyelid products on the market for the treatment of blepharitis. In no particular order, here are a few of the best over the counter (OTC) and prescription eyelid products available for the treatment and management of blepharitis!
OcuSoft eyelid wipes come in Original, Plus, and Baby formulations. All 3 products are individually packaged and contain pre-moistened wipes with antimicrobial properties that effectively kill 7 strains of bacteria. In addition, they break down oils and wipe away other eye irritants, such as pollen.
Ocusoft does not require a prescription and there is no rinsing necessary with the Plus and Baby formulations. Because of their effectiveness and OTC availability, these formulations are usually recommended for the daily maintenance of blepharitis.
On the other hand, Ocusoft also carries a formulation for Demodex called Oust. If your eye care provider has determined that the condition of your blepharitis is caused by an abundance of eyelid mites, then this Demodex formulation is a product that they might recommend. Oust is a gentle foaming spray surfactant with tea tree oil derivatives that is proven to eradicate adult mites.
Lastly, Ocusoft HypoChlor is a spray that is used on a cotton pad that contains the ingredient 0.02% hypochlorous acid. This powerful medication is indicated for daily use to treat more severe cases of blepharitis. In my experience, one downside of this medication is that patients complain about the chlorinated smell of the product.
Many traditional cleansers are created from man-made chemicals. To solve this problem, Cliradex towelettes are a more natural way to keep your eyelids and skin adnexa clean and healthy. These towelettes are preservative-free with a higher concentration of 4-Terpineol, which is the isolated active ingredient of tea tree oil.
While Cliradex wipes have a more potent formulation, a milder concentration has been made in a foaming pump (Cliradex Light) due to complaints of the “menthol-like” sensation from tea tree oil. There is a formulation of Cliradex with an even higher concentration for in-office use only. Lastly, due to its anti-inflammatory properties, this treatment also has a mutually beneficial relationship with patients suffering from rosacea.
Touted as an eye doctor created and formulated line, We Love Eyes is an organic makeup remover and cleanser in one that comes in oil or gentle foaming solutions. The composition of the solutions are pure jojoba, grapeseed, and tea tree oils – that’s it!
As an added bonus on the makeup side of this product, it also removes stubborn waterproof makeup that is a common culprit for unnecessary styes. Due to its anti-inflammatory properties, this treatment also has a mutually beneficial relationship with patients suffering from rosacea.
Price out We Love Eyes on Amazon.
Recently available OTC, Blink Lid Wipes are conveniently pre-moistened wipes with no rinsing or prescription necessary. Indicated for mild to moderate dry eye or blepharitis, this is a great maintenance tool for blepharitis patients.
A key ingredient that keeps the surface of your eyes moisturized and soothed is chamomile. Used in conjunction with Blink Tears, the hyaluronic acid component of this product helps stabilize the surface of your eyes.
Price out Blink Lid Wipes on Amazon.
Avenova is a specially formulated anti-microbial gentle spray solution of Neutrox (pure hypochlorous acid, 0.01% as a preservative) in saline. This solution is a good way to decrease your bacterial load without contributing to the ever-growing issue of antibiotic-resistant strains.
It’s important to note that acute inflammation is not as controlled with hypochlorous acid alone. Also, this solution has a 3-year shelf life and a 30-day expiration period once opened. Avenova is available by prescription only and can be purchased at most pharmacies.
How to use these products
Directions for use of the products above are pretty straightforward.
- Always wipe in a gentle fashion horizontally across your eyelids with a focus on your eyelash base.
- Sweep from the inner corners of your eyelids (by your nose) to the outward corners towards (towards your ears cheek).
- Follow with a quick rinse, if indicated.
- Lastly, always use a fresh towelette (great for on the go and traveling!) or clean cotton pad as indicated.
Interested in learning more about your treatment options for blepharitis? Make sure to schedule an appointment with your local eye care professional today!