The Home Eye SpaExcerpt from Chapter 8
With your home environment adjusted as well as possible to bolster your eye comfort, not detract from it, you'll be well positioned to get the most out of the Home Eye Spa procedure. Originally, I designed the procedure for patients suffering from blepharitis, meibomian gland dysfunction, and rosacea, but it works for anyone who suffers from dry eye, whether it’s caused by these or any other conditions. What’s more, it’s an extremely effective preventive for all these disorders, and it’s beneficial for the health of your eyes in general. Here’s what it’s about:
Remember the meibomian glands you were introduced to back in Chapter 1? There are some 50 of them along the margins of both the top and bottom eyelids.With every blink of your eye, these glands pump oily, lipid-like secretions onto the top of your tear film. This oil coats the tear film, serving as its top protective layer and preventing it from evaporating.
Until and unless the meibomian glands get clogged up. When that happens, the tear film of course evaporates more rapidly, and the result is dryness, burning, irritation-;all the disorders of tear-film dysfunction.
We call the condition blepharitis, which simply means eyelid inflammation. Blepharitis is a common cause of dry eye, although it is possible to have dry eye without blepharitis-and blepharitis treatments may not be necessary in that case. It manifests itself in all the kinds of symptoms we've recorded in this book, symptoms that are very familiar to just about everyone over the age of 40: redness, difficulty wearing contact lenses, dryness or tearing, intermittently blurry vision, bags under the eyes, crusty eyes in the morning.The very fact that these are pretty ordinary irritations means that people tend not to pay too much attention to them at first, with the unhappy result that the condition continues to worsen, becoming harder and harder to treat.
In addition, as you know, skin conditions like rosacea, as well as dandruff, psoriasis, eczema, and so forth, can exacerbate the condition and irritate the blepharitis even further. Often, patients will focus on the skin condition and forget about the eye disorder—which again just lets the condition worsen over time. One thing patients with skin conditions should certainly be aware of is to avoid alcohol-based or heavily fragrant skin products. Look for hypo-allergenic products instead.
There is no cure for blepharitis, but it can be easily managed by the basic
Home Eye Spa treatment. In fact, I recommend the basic treatment for everyone
25 and older, because treating the skin conditions can mitigate the worst effects
of dry eye later in life. There's nothing sadder than to see a 70-year-old patient
who has been suffering the symptoms of blepharitis for decades without knowing
it. It is much harder to treat this person-and it will take much longer for him
to feel relief-than if he had been following the basic Home Eye Spa treatment
Bottom line? Try to make the treatment as regular a part of your
personal care regimen as flossing your teeth, or giving yourself
an exfoliating facial, or doing your nails—three times a week if