Lid Cleansing Treatment
During your eye exam, Dr. Lee will evaluate the amount of debris on the lids and how your oil glands appear to be functioning. She will discuss your symptoms, risk factors and your daily activities that contribute to any discomfort of the eyes to determine the best treatment plan for you.
The Lid Cleansing itself is a very quick and painless procedure. Dr. Lee will instill one drop of topical anesthetic in each eye to make you more comfortable as she cleans the eyelids. It takes 8-10 minutes total for the procedure and there is no down time after the treatment. A soft disposable tip is soaked in the lid cleaning solution, and then attached to the device that gently cleans while massages the upper and lower lid margins. The procedure is on the outside of the eyelids, and nothing involves cleaning underneath or inside of the eyelid margin. The procedure is entirely safe when performed by a qualified medical professional.
Immediately after the treatment, you can resume wearing your contacts and engage in normal activities. Dr. Lee recommends staying make up free the day of the treatment for best results. Depending on the severity of your lid condition, she may recommend lid scrubs and a heat mask at home to prolong the benefits of the treatment. However, after your Lid Cleansing in office, most patients find they don’t require frequent home maintenance. After a few days you may start to notice your eyelids feel less heavy, appear less “puffy” or find you have less “crustiness” or itchiness of the eyelids. The removal of the debris can last up to 4-6 months. You may only require one cleansing annually. However, if you are severely symptomatic you should undergo repeat treatment to maintain healthy lids.
Blepharitis is a condition referring to inflammation of the eyelids. It can contribute to a multitude of symptoms including dryness, irritation, puffy lids, crusty lids, red eyes, light sensitivity, watering of the eyes, intolerance to contact lenses, a sensation that something is in the eye, or even a fluctuation in vision. In general, blepharitis will not cause vision loss but if untreated it can become a chronic condition that can lead to more serious complications of the eye itself, resulting in persistent discomfort of the eyes and severely affect vision.
It is not a contagious condition that will pass from person to person, and it is currently believed that there are multiple factors that lead to the inflammation of the lids. While there is not one answer as to why patients get this condition, it is known that an overgrowth of certain bacteria is found along the lid margin in patients with blepharitis. These same patients may also have a hypersensitive immune response to the bacteria contributing to the changes in the lid margin or a dysfunction in the oil glands that release the protective layer of the tear film. More healthcare providers are finding that blepharitis is one of the most common ocular conditions that presents in office because of the wide range of symptoms patients can experience.
The chronic nature of blepharitis can make it difficult to manage for both patients and the doctor. With the aging population, the constant use of digital devices, and increased prevalence in contact lens wear, patients are in need of regular maintenance of lid hygiene to help prevent discomfort and dryness. With increased age, the physiology of the eyelids change, in turn, increasing the risk of oil gland dysfunction along the eyelid margin and the risk of dry eye symptoms.