Managing your Own Dry Eye and Blepharitis
Self managing your dry eye is reasonable if it is mild, short-term and occurs in particular environments or situations. Beyond that, you should discuss it with your optometrist, ophthalmologist or GP. If you are not having success with your dry eye management, we would welcome you to Alleve Eye Clinic for assessment.
The majority (80%) of Dry Eye is evaporative, and it makes sense to approach your dry eye as if it were.
Try the following strategies:
Improve Oil Gland Functioning
Once per day, apply a heat pack to your closed eyes for 6 minutes. This should be at a comfortable temperature, but above body temperature. This will help liquefy the oil in your lids' Meibomian glands. While the lids are still warm, press your lids firmly between a clean finger and your eye, in about 5 locations along the lid, for 10 seconds per position. This helps express the oil out of the glands, and helps the glands to start functioning better.
Decrease Lid Margin Inflammation
After the warm compresses/gland expressions, clean your eyelid margins, especially around the base of your eyelashes. This helps to remove irritants, bacteria and the food the bacteria eat. It is best to use a specialised cleaner for this, such as Sterilid or Systane Lid Wipes.
Supplement Your Tear Film
Use an artificial tear that supplements the oil layer, such as Systane Balance, upon waking, before bed, then 3 times across the day. You can use drops more often if your symptoms demand it.
Avoid eye drops that contain preservatives, if possible. Avoid eye drops that constrict blood vessels.
Improve Your Environment
Avoid draughts around your face. Consider a humidifier if you are often in airconditioning.
Wear sunglasses or spectacles that fit close to your eyes and wrap around to the side of your eyes, to reduce wind and to trap moisture.
Be conscious of your blink rate when you are concentrating. This is particularly important if you are reading or using a computer/tablet/smartphone.