Blepharitis Treatment Update
The big emphasis of this years Academy meeting was on the fact that cleaner eyelids play a role in EVERYTHING from dry eyes to meibomian gland dysfunction to blepharitis to demodex. We heard multiple times that eyelid hygiene should be emphasized by eye care practitioners as much as brushing your teeth is emphasized by dentists, and this regimen should be started in childhood.
This was a pretty amazing statement and a testament to what we talk about all the time. Clean your eyelids and feel much better. The reason for this is that bacteria and biofilm build-up on your eyelids, and this leads to a plethora of problems including:
- Demodex, which live on your oil, skin cells, and, yes, biofilm.
- MGD, because bacterial biofilm on your eyelids is going to clog your meibomian glands.
- Blepharitis, because an increase in bacteria leads to even more biofilm, which leads to inflammation of your eyelids.
- Dry eyes, because without your meibomian glands and other glands of your eyelids working well, this creates less oily tears for your eyes (which means more discomfort and irritation).
The eyelid cleanser of choice that was talked about the most was hypochlorous acid eyelid cleanser. As anything gains in popularity, so does the competition. Here are a list of the hypochlorous acid eyelid cleansers that we saw at the Academy meeting:
This, of course, is our own brand of hypochlorous acid, but we were mentioned a few times at lectures. We are one of the most accessible hypochlorous acid eyelid cleansers on the market and make it easy for our patients to obtain and use it. It's as simply as spraying it onto your closed eyelids, rubbing it in, and letting it dry!
This one is available through your eye doctor and is one of the newer prescription or physician-dispensed formulas on the market (similar to Avenova). The formula looks to be around $150/month via the pharmacy (according to GoodRx.com) and may run about $40-50/month if you get it through a doctor who carries it in their office.
We've talked a lot about Avenova on our blog and in our videos because it is a great hypochlorous acid cleanser! However, the price can be prohibitive if your doctor does not dispense it in their office. According to GoodRx.com, you're still going to pay around $300/month without insurance at the pharmacy. Learn more about Avenova here.
- Over-The-Counter Ocusoft Hypochlor
Ocusoft is a well-known company that makes a hypochlorous acid cleanser, and this one is very commonly recommended by eye doctors. Is it the best one? We believe there are purer formulas on the market and formulas that have less potential to irritate the eyes.
- Over-The-Counter Zenoptiq Gel
We actually like this one because it's different than a spray we normally see (although they do have a spray formulation as well). This formula is a hypochlorous acid gel, so instead of spraying it onto your closed eyelids, you'll wet a cotton round with it before rubbing into your eyelids and lashes. Both formulations run about $30.