I frequently recommend cleaning the eyelids with dilute baby shampoo. When I bring this up with patients, I often get a quizzical look from them. Baby shampoo for adults? It works well around the eyes because of the “no-tears” feature. You don’t get the stinging in your eyes like with regular soap.
Why would I recommend baby shampoo? The main reason is for blepharitis. This is a very common chronic low-grade eyelid infection. The symptoms include red eyes in the morning, excessive tearing early in the day, a slight discharge and/or a gravely feeling in the eyes.
The baby shampoo decreases the bacterium from around your eyes. There are many small openings into the eyelid around the eyes that can easily become infected by common bacteria that exists elsewhere on your skin. Baby shampoo also helps decrease eye allergy symptoms by removing pollen or other irritants from contact with your eyes.
What you do is dilute the shampoo as you would for washing your hands with liquid soap. You can use your finger tips, a wash cloth, cotton tip or small cotton pad. You clean around the eyes right up to the edges of the eyelids and then rinse with warm water. Most people do this once or twice a day.
If you have the symptoms noted above, give baby shampoo eyelid scrubs a try. You will probably be surprised at how such a simple remedy improves your eye comfort.
Dr. Martha Jay is a Board Certified Ophthalmologist specializing in medical and surgical eye care. She welcomes patients of all ages into her practice and accepts most insurance plans including Medicare Assignment. She received her ophthalmology training at Northwestern University in Chicago.
For more information or to schedule an appointment, call 262-241-1919.
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