Eyelid Disorders – What are they?

Our eyelids are very delicate and fragile. They are the thinnest skin in our body that protects and helps our eyes. By blinking and closing the eye, it helps removing dirt, replenishes moisture, and protects the eyes from any injuries.

Eyelid Disorders are abnormal conditions that affect the eyelid. They range from benign, self-resolving processes to malignant, which are possibly metastasis, infection, tumor and inflammation. Luckily, these disorders do not affect vision and also they are not life threatening. Frequent rubbing of the eye and constant blinking can cause irritation that results to bacterial invasion into the eyelids.

Here is a list of some common eyelid disorders with their management:

1. Blepharitis – This is the most common eyelid disorder that is a chronic condition. It is caused by unhygienic lifestyle and bacterial invasion. Symptoms include watery eyes, a burning sensation or feeling of foreign particle present in the eye, redness, and itchy eyelids. They can be treated with antibiotic ointments, hot compresses, and washing the eyelids with moist washcloth.

2. Hordeolum – Also known also as sty, this is a minor bacterial infection that occurs in the sebaceous glands that are located in the edge of the eyelid. It can be caused by bacterial invasion or heavy make up on the eye. Watery eye, redness and itchy eye, and pain around the eye are the common symptoms of this condition. They can be treated with topical antibiotics and hot compress for 10-15 minutes.

3. Chalazion – This is a chronic subcutaneous nodule within the eyelid that results from the obstruction of meibomian gland. A small lump is seen in the eye which is treated by warm compress about 15 minutes, four times a day. Aside from that topical antibiotics are also used and if medical treatment is no use, incision and drainage is performed.

4. Entropion – This occurs when the eyelid fold inward that causes irritation, white mucus discharges, and redness. It commonly occurs in elderly as a result of age-related changes. Treatment includes artificial tear drops and lubricating eye ointment until surgery can be performed.

5. Ectropion – This occurs when the eyelid turn outward caused by weakened muscles of the eye and facial paralysis. This condition causes redness in the eye, irritation, and tearing. Lubricating the eye with tear drops, ointment and surgery can treat this condition. The American Society of Ophthalmic Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery recommends surgical intervention since it is effective and it allows the eyelid to function well.

6. Eyelid Edema – Also called eye swelling, it is caused by insect bite, allergic reactions, chemicals, plants, and even makeup. Bacterial infection can also be a cause for this condition. If treatment is not done on time, it may result to vision disturbance.

With eyelid disorders, it is very important to practice good hygiene. Regular eyelid washing helps prevent the eyelid problems. Aside from that, refraining from rubbing and touching the eye and eyelids are also important. Using hypoallergenic makeups and avoiding allergens may also help in preventing eyelid disorders. And lastly, wear ultraviolet screen eyeglasses to help protect your eyes.

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