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Eyelid Hygiene: Why It Matters

People frequently take their eyelid hygiene casually. Many eye issues, however, are caused directly or indirectly by filthy eyelids. As a result, eye doctors may advise their patients to take care of their eyelids. Continue reading to learn the dos and don'ts of eyelid hygiene.

What’s the Primary Function of Your Eyelids?

Your eyelids shield your eyes from particles and dirt, while also blocking light to help you fall asleep. In addition, they help keep the cornea moist.

When you close your eyes, the eyelids spread tear film, a lubricant and antibacterial secretion generated by the lacrimal glands, throughout the surface of the cornea, preventing it from drying out.

Here’s a lesser-known fact:

Because they are constructed of numerous layer of tissues, ligaments, nerves, blood arteries, and fat, your eyelids have the thinnest skin on your body. Because of this complexity, as well as their frequent exposure to the environment, they are prone to a variety of ailments.

What Are the Common Complications?

Eyelid problems can lead to a variety of difficulties, including:

Dry Eye Syndrome

Dry eye syndrome happens when your eyes are unable to generate sufficient tears, which are a combination of water, fatty oils, and mucus that help maintain your eyes nice and clear while also fighting infection. Inflammation at the borders of your eyelashes, which prevents oil glands from producing oil into tears, is one possible cause of insufficient tear production.

You may encounter the following symptoms if you do not cry enough:

  1. Sensitivity to light

  2. Vision impairment

  3. Watery, red eyes

  4. Having trouble using contact lenses or nighttime driving

If the underlying reason of your dry eye is irritated eyelids, your doctor may prescribe prescription eye drops or ointment.

Quick Tip:

Dry eyes can also result because of not blinking adequately, which can occur when staring at a computer screen for an extended period of time. Remember that your eyelids are in charge of distributing tear film across your cornea. To keep your cornea from drying up, opt for the 20-20-20 rule: glance away from your gadget and focus on something at least 20 feet away for at least 20 seconds after every 20 minutes.


Microscopic particles, such as dandruff flakes from your hair and brows, eyelash mites and lice, and crusts along your eyelids, can block the oil glands close to the base of your eyelashes, causing inflammation of your eyelids. Blepharitis can also be caused by a bacteria infection or even other skin disorders such as rosacea.

Symptoms include:

  1. Swollen or oily eyelids

  2. Eyelashes that are falling, crusty, or misdirected

  3. Skin flaking around the eyes

  4. Watery, red eyes

  5. Blinking frequently

Fortunately, easy medication can often alleviate the discomfort. To minimize irritation, just clean your eyes and apply a warm compress to your eyelids. If the symptoms persist after cleaning and disinfecting the affected area, you should contact a doctor as soon as you can. Because blepharitis can be linked to other skin disorders, you should get a thorough eye check to rule out other probable reasons.

Quick Facts: What are Eyelash Mites?

Eyelid infections can be caused by Demodex mites or eyelash mites. As unpleasant as it sounds, almost everybody has Demodex mites. These small mites live in your pores and feed on skin cells, yet they can also be found on your eyebrows. A few mites should not cause any trouble, but when there are too many, complications may occur.

Symptoms include:

  1. Itching in your eyebrows and the skin's surrounding areas

  2. You have a stinging sensation in your eyes.

  3. Other skin conditions flare-ups

Remember that because these mites are minute, the only way to figure out if they are the source of eyelid infections or any skin condition is to consult an optician.


A sty is a complication that can develop from blepharitis. It's a red, stinging, pus-filled mass on the edge of your eyelid, though it can also appear on the inside part of your eyelid.

Other symptoms might include:

  1. Painful eyelids

  2. Swelling on the eyelids

  3. Tearing

You shouldn't be too concerned; most styes will go away in a few days. In the meanwhile, you can reduce any discomfort by applying a warm towel for five to ten minutes multiple times per day.

Treatment and Prevention: Eyelid Hygiene

Eyelid cleanliness is an important element of managing and preventing eyelid infections. However, you must exercise extreme caution when washing your eyes. Remember that the skin on your upper and lower eyelids is incredibly delicate and sensitive.

Treating Eyelid Infections

A warm compress should nearly always be used to treat eyelid infections. Heat increases blood flow to a wounded or inflamed area of your body, which relieves pain and discomfort. It can help dissolve clogged debris near your eyelids' oil glands.

To prepare a warm compress:

  • Wash your hands thoroughly.

  • Using warm, not hot, water, dampen a cloth.

  • Place the cloth over your lids for a couple minutes and close your eyes. If you're suffering from an eyelid infection, your doctor will advise you on how long you should keep the compress on your eyes.

  • Before opening your eyes, gently brush the cloth along the borders of your eyelids, being careful not to press too firmly.

Everyday Cleaning

Remember that your eyelids are thin and delicate, so only use a mild cleanser to clean them and the sensitive skin around your eyes.

  • Moisten a cloth with a moderate cleaning solution after washing your hands.

  • Gently wipe your eyelashes and eyelids

  • Before opening your eyes, gently brush the washcloth along the borders of your eyelids, being careful not to press too firmly.

  • Rinse using warm water.

  • Repeat the process with a new cloth for the second eye.

A Quick Tip About Make-Up Brushes

If you wear makeup on a daily basis, eye professionals recommend checking your makeup drawer every six months and changing all cosmetic products, particularly makeup brushes and mascara. When a product is unsealed, it is exposed to the outside environment and is likely to become contaminated with germs and even eyelash mites.

Of course, replacing your makeup products every six months can be expensive. That is why you should purchase in smaller quantities or in sample volumes. This reduces contamination, as well as the danger of skin and eyelid infections.

The Importance of Eye Exams

We strongly advise getting a regular eye exam to rule out any underlying eye issues, such as eyelid abnormalities. The risk of developing vision-related problems rises with age. Early detection and treatment can help you avoid complications and maintain your vision and your overall well-being.



This information is for educational purposes only and is not intended to replace the advice of your doctor. Candorvision disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.

The information contained on this website does not establish, nor does it imply, doctor-patient relationship. Candorvision does not offer this information for diagnostic purposes. A diagnosis must not be assumed based on the information provided.


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