Blepharitis is a common condition of inflammation of the eyelid. It usually occurs on the part of the eyelid where the eyelashes grow and can affect both eyes. Blepharitis can develop at any age, however, is mostly common in individuals over the age of 40.


The symptoms of Blepharitis may include:

  • Red and swollen eyelids
  • Burning/stinging of the eyes
  • Crusting of the eyelids, typically upon awakening
  • Eyelid sticking
  • Itching of the eyelids
  • Eyelids can appear oily
  • Runny eyes
  • Discomfort looking into the light
  • Unusual growth of eyelashes
  • Loss of eyelashes
  • Constant blinking


Blepharitis is typically caused when there is excess growth of bacteria found around the skin, which causes the eyelid’s oil glands to become clogged, in turn causing them to become reddened, itchy and dry.

There are other factors that can be taken into consideration including:

  • Seborrheic dermatitis: a condition where dandruff is present on the scalp and eyebrows
  • Rosacea: a condition that causes redness of the face
  • A Bacterial infection
  • Blockage of the oil glands in the eyelids
  • Lice among eyelashes
  • Allergies or allergic reactions to eye medications, contact lenses or eye makeup


Blepharitis is often difficult to treat and can cause discomfort and sensitivity to light. Complications with Blepharitis may include:

  • Blepharitis can cause abnormal growth of eyelashes or loss of eyelashes in some cases
  • Blepharitis can cause scarring of the eyelids
  • Excess of flaking around the eyelids can cause an accumulation of an oily mucus solution that forms tears and causes irritation and watery eyes
  • Wearing contact lenses can cause discomfort and irritation to the eyes
  • Conjunctivis: Reoccurrence of pink eye
  • Sty: A sty is an infection that causes a painful bump near the edge of the eyelid (usually on the outside of an eyelid)
  • Chalazion: A Chalazion occurs when one of the small oil glands becomes clogged and infected from bacteria, causing a red, swollen eyelid (usually occurs on the inside of an eyelid)
  • A corneal infection may occur from constant itching and irritating of the inflamed eyelids, as well as misdirected eyelashes