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itchy red swollen eyelids,,,not Blepharitis - please help me!!!!
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itchy red swollen eyelids,,,not Blepharitis - please help me!!!!

here i go....so for the last 6 months i have had itchy eyelids...my eye doctor told me it was due to mild allergies and prescribed eye drops which didnt help in the least so i turned to over the counter allergy medicine which hasn't helped either (so i dont think it's allergies) and in the last 3 weeks not only are my eyelids itchy but when i wake up in the morning my upper eye lids are bright red and swelled up so bad that its embarassing!!!! i have switched makeup brands, stopped wearing makeup all together, changed pillowcases religiously, done the compresses, used mild baby shampoo on my eyes to clean them now, i take my vitamins, gone to the dermatologist who again prescribed more allergy medication (hasnt worked) went to an Ophthalmologist who said he didnt think it wasnt blepharitis but really wasnt sure what was going on so he prescribed me bousch & lombs neomycin and polymyxin b sulfates and dexamethasone ophthalmic ointment USP to apply to my eyelids which if anything in the last 4 days of using it has actually caused the swelled upper part of my eyelids to burn...typically the swelling goes down thru the day but by the time night hits theyre back to being all swelled up again...im 25 and done as much research as i can...this is literally killing me...(and i hate not wearing makeup!!!) please oh please if you have any ideas of what i may be doing wrong or what i can do to help my poor eyes let me know!!! anything will help at this point!
thanks
~~k~~
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Might consider stopping the neomycin as 10% of people taking it develop allergies to it.

Might consider just using the dexamathason for a 7-10 days.

I'm assuming you do not wear contacts. If you do the contacts are the cause 99% of the time.

There are many things that you could be allergic to that could cause this including cosmetics, hair coloring, nail polish, food allergies, perfumes, etc.

If you get no relief consider seeing a cornea/external disease ophthalmologist. You can use the Find An Eye MD feature at www.aao.org to find one near you. Let us know if you determine a cause.

JCH III MD
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I have the same problem as this red swollen itchy eyelids.  Don't have allergies like this.  I do wear contacts--why would they cause this?  I haven't been wearing the contacts for days now....
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Because when a person wears contact lens and has problems with redness, irriation, watering, sensitivity to light, foreign body sensation, discharge 90% plus its the contacts that is causing the problem.

JCH III MD
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i wish i had an answer to my original question on this page...who knows what was wrong with my poor eyes....so after seeing the eye doc. i got that weird prescription filled and never used it...i kept washing my eyelids with the baby soap morning and night, changed my pillowcases ALL THE TIME and changed my contact cleanser to the clear care solution (the kind that bubbles up) ----since then my red swollen eyes have gone back to normal (thank goodness!!!) but now i have fine lines alllllll around my eyes where they had swelled so bad in the weeks before...it's better than what i originally had but my eyelids (and under my eyes) have aged 10 years in the last 2 months from this...anybody know a good wrinkle cream?! ha....so i never found out what was wrong...possibly an allergy to something..!? good luck.....
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My 5 yr old son wakes with red swollen eyes some mornings.  The swelling subsides during the day, but turn into dry flaky red and itchy eyelids.  Some days it is so bad that he can't open his eyes -on these days he ends up with what looks like bruising, or black eyes as the swelling subsides.  The rash responds well to protopic, but I have no idea what he might be reacting to in the first place -I've tried eliminating milk, then eggs, wheat, nuts...  No marked difference with any of these eliminations.  Any suggestions?
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Food allergies are very unlikely. You should take your son to an ophthalmologist Eye MD physician, perhaps a pediatric one if available, for a proper diagnosis and treatment.

You can find one at www.aao.org using the Find An Eye MD feature.

JCH III MD
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I have a similar prob as well.  My right eyelid gets itchy at night (weird), right in the area of my lashes.  I scratch and by morning its huge and red, sometimes painful.  My left eye is very different.  It is not as sensitive.  Gets itchy higher, not as much or as often and never swells.  After the "itch, scratch and swelling episode" the swelling goes away and I am left with VERY dry skin.  I apply lotions at night and after a day or two, I am left with wrinkles!
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I, as well, have googled "red, swollen itchy eyelids" because I am suffering the same problem. But my eyelids are swollen around my eyebrow area... NOT near my lashes. It's like the fatty part over your brow bone. When I wake up it's sometimes so swollen I can't fully see. I also have a small rash on the side of my face, below my temple, about the size of a dime. Could it be eczema? The inflamation (inflammation) reduces during the day but by morning I wake up with the puffy tightness again. I haven't changed make up, lotion, detergent or anything like that. And I don't wear contacts either. And the itching drives me crazy! My health insurance doen't cover dermatology :( so I'm trying to solve the mystery myself. Any help would be WONDERFUL!!!!

Thanks in Advance!
Brooke
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It could be from your eyelids and you might have blepharoconjunctivitis and secondary lid swelling. Your problem cannot be diagnosed in a forum such as this and you should make an appointment to see an Eye MD ophthalmologist-physician. Find one at www.aao.org

JCH III MD
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I have the exact same thing and went to see an eye doctor. He gave me prescription eye drops that don't work. I'm planning on seeing an allergist and a derm to find out what is going on.
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Did any of you have any joy? I have the same problem
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I have swollen eye lids in the morning.  I 've tried warm compresses and restasis but this doesn't seem to help.  I am a contact lens wearer. I have started to limit the amount of time I wear the lenses but I have seen no improvement
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Has anybody found cure yet? I've had same problem since Christmas - thought at first it was because we were having painting done and I was allergic - but this finished ages ago. This flares up every few days and is particularly bad on lids - bright red then also moved to under eyes. Doctor prescribed hydrocortisone cream but I don't like to use it too often and also clarityn but these haven't worked. Haven't used make up or eye cream since before Christmas only E45 on eyes and simple eye wipes. Also have red rash on both sides of neck - don't know if this is connected?
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I had no idea so many have the same problem. My problem started 7 months ago. Red burning skin around my eyes. At times, eyelid and upper eye area swelling. Sometimes just very dark red skin around my eyes. I have gone to 2 internal med specialists, 2 opthamolagists and 1 dermatolagist. Been treated for blepharitis, seborrheic dermatitis, and allergies. Whenever I start another treatment I have a short period of relief. It always comes back...longest time without symptoms 10 days. Like eveyone else, I have thrown all makeup, lotions, and soaps away. Washed sheets, pillow cases, and put pillow in the dryer. This has become debilitating and I am becoming depressed. I have a high profile job and don't want to be seen because I look like I have some awful disease. Can anyone suggest a next step? Surely somebody knows what this is and how it can be treated.
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I've had blepharitis for 15 years and the only people that talked any sense were Sunderland eye hospital
You may solve it (or make it easier, it's never solved)by bathing your eyes 4 times a day in salty water. Baby shampoo made mine worse.
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I forgot to mention because the eye consultant at Shotley Bridge Hospital was clueless and arrogant, my eyes got so bad that by the time i got to Sunderland eye hospital they also had to put me on antibiotics. Seems odd but i had to take these once a day for months.
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The newest and most successful product to keep blepharitis under control is TherTears SterLid which both removeds the oil and debris but also is antibacterial. It is over the counter, available on the internet. (disclaimer-I have no financial interest in this product). Works better than baby shampoo.

JCH IIIMD
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I am 26 and have the same eye lid swelling that ALWAYS occurs in the morning upon waking up.  Mine do not itch though and everyone else seems to have the swollen redness along with the itching.  It always involves my top and lower eyelids and always both eyes.  I too have been to dermatologists and allergists (was prescribed allergy meds but he reallly could not tell me anything other than to keep a log of what happened or what I ate or came into contact with, etc)  My dermatologist could only tell me what to do to provide relief and she suggested warm milk on the affected areas.  I am writing this now with swollen eye lids and this is the first time in 2 years that it has come back.  It used to happen to me more frequently but that was 2-4 years ago.  I literally look like I've been in a boxing match and it makes getting out of bed near impossible.  I too have washed the sheets religiously, avoided harsh makeup and chemicals, tried to link this to some type of food allergy--and I can't come up with anything!  I will say that yesterday for the first time in a long time I began using the topical cream DUAC prescribed by my Dermatologist for acne.  It is 1% clindamycin and 5% benzoyl peroxide, and as I write this it is forefront on my mind that this stuff may be the cause (there has to be an obvious link between my sudden reoccurrance and my recent use of this cream--yesterday).  Perhaps some of the ingredients in this stuff are in something you use?  Please let me know if any of this sounds familiar to you guys or if you might be able to shed some light on this.  
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See an ophthalmologist Eye MD physician. Find one at www.aao.org.  Take in some pictures of your lids when badly swollen.
JCH III MD
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I too have red and irritated eye lids,they are really itchy,they are watering like a faucet,they hurt, I also have really dry skin,it scalely and red,  I also have a white pimple on the edge of my top eyelid , below my upper lid , I wear contacts,which i have taken out and I also have eczema. I have tried eczema cream, many other creams, I have made weak tea and used a eye cup to flush my eyes., and compresses.  I don't know what else to do,it's driving me crazy and i am so itchy I'm gonna dive my eyes out!! I live way up north,quite a ways away from specialty doctors, can anyone give  me a solution or any help!!!  Thanks
jana63
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hi
its amazing that so many people have the same thing and no one knows what it could be.....about a year ago i started getting readdly red eyelids, that would swell up in the morning so much sometimes i cd not see, the doc gave me anthistamines and steroids. they calmed them down a bit only, then i started to get redness under the eyes and swollen under the eyes in the morning with deep eye wrinkles, they come and go and i have no idea what to do, ive tried steroids, all the creams, changing my makeup, not wearing contacts, and nothing...so i tried cutting out red chillies, chocolate and eggs, the last 2 days i had chillies and chocolate and it seems like it cd be back, so if i am on to something with it being a food allergy shall let you all know....meantime any ideas forme? things like spirulina and goldenseal helped, though stress doesnt
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I can't believe this either. I have had the same symptoms (red swollen eyelids, both top and bottom, red swelling on the skin to the outside of the eyes, flakey, dry itchy too) for about 5 weeks. I thought it was becuase I am newly pregnant (hormones?) - have tried the baby soap and have been not wearing makeup, washed all my makeup brushes, changed pillow case more often and nothing is helping. However, Aveeno HAND cream does help with the dryness and itching a bit, but it does not cure it. I am going to keep coming back to see if any of you find the answer. It is awful and sure doesn't look nice!
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I too am having the same problems, red-itchy RIGHT eyelid worse in the morning when I wake up and sometimes at night before bed.  My right eye is often swollen when I wake up and takes a while to go back down  during the day.  Sometimes my eye will seem like it's getting better but then gets really dry skin and begins to peel. My left eye gets itchy only on the upper-half, never swells or gets red. I don't know what to do, I've tried a lot of different treatments, baby soap, etc. The most recent symptom has been that my right eye has been twitching! I need help! I'm worried if I go to the doctor I won't get good results like many people on here... Thanks for the help!
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I am 58 and have recently developed they red, swollen, painful eyelids. After 4 visists to doctors, no one has any answers. I have always been senestive to different agents, but never been disgnosed with allergies
(seems my symptoms to bee stings =, intolerance to antibiotics, & rashes have never been a "real allergy, so doctors don't take take them seriously) I have a good case of ADHD - and I think that diagnosis brings on some wierd conditions that doctors are puzzled with. I also wonder about all the chemicals our foods are treated with, could our problems come from there? anybody?
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Always reassuring to hear of others with the same problem (though less so to hear that there are no obvious cures!). I am 55.  Both my upper eyelids are affected.  Have had the problem for 5 or 6 years. It is exacerbated by sweat (eg when in high temperatures or during/after a work out at the gym).I feel that eye make up (even the highest qaulity for sensitive eyes etc)  is the root of the problem**. Have never actually consulted a doctor about the problem but am about to do so because it seems to be happening more frequently.

** Let's do out own little survey!  Any male (non-make up wearing) sufferers out there? Any female sufferers who do not wear eye make up?

You may like to TRY the following (which usually clears up my problem in two or three days):
Buy 'Simple Eye Ointment' from a pharmacy.
Do NOT wear eye make up (sorry! I know it is dreadful to face the world looking naked and raw!).
Keep your eyes really clean, bather often.  
Apply ointment.
Keep fingers madly crossed.



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I've been suffering with sore eyelids for some years.  The symptoms of blepharitis don't strike a chord with me.  My eyes are certainly itchy, mainly on the upper eyelids, with the redness sometimes extending to the skin on my face by the tear ducts.

As I'm a man, external factors like make up are not a factor, nor are contacts.  My eyeballs themselves feel fine.  I notice that when running, sweat is sometimes highly irritant and causes my skin to really burn.  I would say my skin has a tendency to dryness, with very mild eczema.

I think this is behind the root cause of my eyelid problem (rather than any blocking of oil secretion ducts around the eyelids as with blepharitis.  I read the following web page which had some useful information about dry skin, particularly the issue about a lack of specific nutrients.  I'd prefer to think that the cure for my problems would not be by putting more chemicals on my face, but by putting better nutrienmts inside my body, creating the conditions for it to heal itself.  

My only reason for posting this is that this itchiness problem can seem soul destroying, so maybe there is an alternative line of possibilities to investigate.... best wishes to you all.
http://naturalmedicine.suite101.com/article.cfm/beautiful_skin_from_the_inside_out
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hi,

I also have been having the same problem... never had a problem before until mine started last may when i thought i was having a reaction to the chlorine at the pool we were going to...my eye would get really bad and because of the swelling i would look like i was punched out and my eye was really, really, red......

I too went to an eye dr - spent $60 on my copays and another $80 on my "medicine" and "follow up" medicine...  and i don't believe it did anything... he said i had blepharitis... but of course my flare up was gone by the time i could get into see him...i think blepharitis is a blanket diagnosis when they don't know what is going on... it's like telling me I have a cold... thanks for nothing...

Since then I have had numerous flare-ups...  and I have tried different things... one thing is for sure...baby shampoo did absolutely nothing but sting.... i have recently tried something on my own and i may have found a partial solution.....

i went out and bought 2 things...  eucerin original moisturizing creme and Olay age defying revitalizing eye gel (it's a little tub .5 oz.) You can get both at walgreen's .  The eucerin is the 2 oz tube and runs about $5 (it is the super thick one) and the eye gel is $10 9 (a friend of mine recommended this as she was having the same problem).  I have been using them daily or almost daily on the one eye where I was having the problems as well as the other eye as a precaution, and it seems to be keeping it at bay.    for example... this morning i woke up with the usual red eye that usually accompanies the horrible swelling of my eye and all I have is the red eye and not the swelling...  and granted the red eye is no walk in the park, but at least i can put the refresh liquidgel eye drops - the really thick ones - and that alleviates some of the irritation...

And to answer one of the posters above, I do not wear eye make-up...  at least we know we aren't alone...  it's just very frustrating that there are so many people out there and no one knows what is causing it...

i hope this helps... :)


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I also have these exact symptoms. Itchy, swollen and burning upper eyelids - much worse in the morning, gradually worsening for a week or two, then fading away and leaving me with very dry and scaly eyelids. The left one is a bit worse, but both are affected.

Began about 3 years ago - sometimes I'll go several months without a flareup, though my eyelids always seem tender even then. Lately they've been much worse, with hardly any break in between irritation. I'm a guy, don't wear makeup or apply anything to the lids, don't really have any history of allergies (skin or otherwise). I've tried to keep track of what environmental or food factors coincide with a flareup and have found no patterns at all. I do wear contacts, but found no improvement after wearing only glasses for a while.

I'm uninsured and don't want to spend the money for a doctor to misdiagnose me, which appears to've happened to many of you. Other internet folks have suggested blepharitis, which seems to be a catchall for unusual eyelid problems. And others have said might be candida, which seems like even more of a catchall. Very frustrating.

Besides the constant burning and itching, I look like ****. After reading all these comments I'm wondering how many people out there are suffering from the exact same symptoms and are not getting any accurate help from doctors...
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After doing yard work a couple of days ago (connected or not?), I found that that evening my eye was itchy. The next morning my upper eye lid along my eye lashes was red and swollen.  No eye make up or contacts here. I also do not have dry skin near my eye at all. And I have never had any problems with allergies. I want to rub the heck out of it and am trying to refrain. I'm not sure that this is the same as everyone else but just thought I'd add in case anyone has any ideas for me. Unfortunately no insurance here either and not sure if a doctor visit will help.
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I wonder  if u can help. I  am 27 yrs old and finally decided to go see a dermatologist for my very mild adult acne. He prescribed me differin, clindoxyl (Clindamycin and benzyl peroxide) and neo medrol two weeks ago. Since then i use differin every day, clindoyxl every other day and neo medrol i have only used twice. Acne treatment is going fine.

But 5 day into the treatment my eyelids became swollen and flaky. Furthermore, my eyes are red and extremely itchy. I have tried lubricating drops and gels. But nothing helps. I have also tried lid cleansing with lid care.
Any advice?

Perhaps i accidentally got one of the acne medicines near my eye.

THe itchiness is almost unbearable.

I am going to see a opthamolgist soon. But i was wondering if you could help me in the mean time.
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Ok.  Here's my experience and what helped me:

I had all of the painful symptoms most of you describe.  I tried EVERYTHING to get my itchy, swollen, flaky, painful eyelids to disappear. It was horrible!  Not only was it painful & ugly, I couldn't see correctly.  I went to many doctors who prescribed me topical steroids, drops, they would temporary help but in the end not enough and I now suffer from thinning of the skin around my eyes which is permanent. My skin was steroid addicted. I went cold turkey and stopped using steroids.

I searched the internet and tried the many remedies suggested; shampoos, hot compresses..........nothing really helped. My eyes would tear constantly.  I was a mess.

One day I purchased Dr. Hauschka eye balm.  Wow. It made an immediate difference.  After a few weeks my skin was healing, itching was diminished but I wasn't totally out of the woods.  I googled all of the ingredients in  my eye balm to try to test each on individually.  Here are the ingredients:

Full Ingredient List for Eye Contour Day Balm
Ricinus Communis (Castor) Seed Oil, Arachis Hypogaea (Peanut) Oil, Beeswax/Cera Flava, Daucus Carota Sativa (Carrot) Root Extract, Anthyllis Vulneraria Extract, Prunus Armeniaca (Apricot) Kernel Oil, Calendula Officinalis Flower Extract, Theobroma Cacao (Cocoa) Butter, Hypericum Perforatum (St. John'swort) Extract, Silk/Serica Powder, Simmondsia Chinensis (Jojoba) Seed Oil, Melia Azadirachta (Neem) Leaf Extract, Fragrance/Parfum (Essential Oil), Citronellol, Geraniol, Limonene, Linalool, Citral, Eugenol, Farnesol, Lecithin, Glycerin

Number 15, NEEM OIL  is the winner!!!!

I've been using it alone & in conjunction with my Dr. H eye balm (neem may be too potent alone for some) and it has CLEARED up my symptoms!!

Google Neem Oil and you'll find that it's used for a wide variety of skin conditions.  It's cheap & readily available.

Now don't get me wrong.  I do still have a flareup from time to time and I've connected the dots and now know that my eye problems are allergy related.  When I get a flareup I use a prescribed NASONEX as well and it does the trick!

Warning:  Neem Oil is very, very STINKY!!!!!!!!!!  Yuck.  It kinda smells like garlic.  The Dr. H eye balm has a nice fragrance so it cuts down of the stinky Neem smell.

One more thing:  I've started using Neem on my daughter that forever has that nasty, eczema rash in the folds of her elbows.  Gone!  No more elidel, no more cortersone!

I highly recommend Neem. The only thing I need now is the money to fix my stretched out, thinned out eyelids which make me look 10 years older than I am.
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I thought my eyelid swelling, scaliness, and redness was from propylene glycol.  However, from what I've been reading above I'm thinking it might be benzoyl peroxide.  Both BP and PG are used in food and tons of beauty/cosmetic products.  Does anyone have any thoughts on this?  

I'm pretty sure mine are swollen tonight b/c of a blemish cream (pharmacist said it was PG free) I used a couple days ago for a break out (or rash?) on my forehead and neck that accompanied my last flare-up a couple weeks ago.  So, that means that PG was in the product under a different name OR it's benzoyl peroxide, right?  

About me:
33
female
problems since Jan/Feb 2008
break-out/rash accompanied flare-up in April
(clear skin before that)
visited GP, allergist, dermatologist, and optometrist
GP said it was blepharitis and to wash with baby shampoo (no help)
allergies to ragweed, dust, dogs, 1 mold, 1 tree
allergist referred me to a dermatologist
patch testing was negative
derm. gave me dioxicylin (sp?) for rash (no help)
optom. said he couldn't help and to return to derm.
haven't worn make-up since February
don't use soap anymore
wash hair with baking soda (since April)
condition with apple cider vinegar (since April)
no one has been able to help:(

When it does clear up a bit, I'm left with wrinkled skin on my eyes.  I'm going to try the neem oil.  I already use Nasonex for other allergies.  Does anyone know if the wrinkled skin is a permanent side effect of the swelling?

Okay...that's it...thanks!  Hopefully we'll figure this out soon!  I just want to be back to normal again!
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Hi ctall5!

I feel your pain.

I too have many allergies predominately dust mites.  I have to keep my bedding as free as possible of mites.  I've found that tossing my pillows in the dryer on high heat helps greatly too as it kills anything in them.

Many people can not tolerate BP. Another ingredient, salicylic acid found in many beauty and acne products especially face & eye creams and washes.  While I can use SA's on my face I can not on my eye area and I suspect a combination of SA and my allergies acerbated my condition. What is the other new acne product that's has caused the rash on your face?  Is it a retinoid like Tretinoin - Retin-A, Retin-A Micro, Avita, Renova?

The bad news:  My lids are permanently wrinkly.  Some is due to my age , 49, some, in my opinion is due to the skin issue and the medications I've used to combat the condition. Oh, I'm female and yeah, I'm pretty unhappy about it. My eyes have aged greatly since my problem and disproportionality so to the rest of my face.  I have excess skin and one lid drooped because of it.  Also, the inner most corners both upper & lower seem to be the area most wrinkled as opposed to outer corners which get lined fastest naturally in the aging process.

My routine is:

Day

Wash with L'Occtaine Honey Bee bar
Dr hauschka Normalizing Day oil on my lids and face
1 or 2 drops of Neem oil on my lids


Night:
wash and leave face bare, neem oil AND Dr Hauschka Eye Balm on lids

I want to also tell you that I have acne prone skin.  I've had it all of my life and it continues into midlife. It took me a very long time to find that most acne products do not do as good of a job for many.  The key is to exfoliate (find the method that YOUR skin can tolerate on a daily basis) MOISTURE!  (acne sufferers shy away from moisture as many products contain pore clogging ingredients) and SPOT treat (using a BP or SA product only to calm and clear an inflammation, not all over your entire face!)

I've also found that oil is your friend, not foe, and I highly recommend Dr. H's normalizing Day oils as a moisturizer.  My skin never looked clearer!!!!!! Also,  I often cover my face in Neem when I'm in the tub or shower and rinse it (not wash) off as well. It leaves just enough behind and works for me well.  Neem has antibacterial and anti inflammatory properties but it STINKS!!!

I hope some of this information helps!!


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Thanks!  One other question...has anyone here had problems with their liver?  Has anyone done a liver cleanse?  Something I was reading said that swollen eyelids could be related to a bad liver or a build up of toxins in the liver.  So, now I'm curious.  I might try a liver cleanse.  I'm willing to try just about anything these days.
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Benzoyl peroxide side effects: Dryness, redness and scaly skin are experienced if the product is initially used in too high a concentration, or applied too often. Occasionally, these symptoms, if severe, may signal an allergy to benzoyl peroxide, and often include swelling, itching or tenderness. Dilute an over-the-counter, cream-based hydrocortisone cream with a little water to treat existing irritation. Allergy aside, the skin will adjust to benzoyl peroxide over a period of a few weeks. A proteolytic enzyme, Enzyme Exfoliating Masque Celazome, used as an exfoliant will temporarily remove flaky skin. Additional application instructions are included in your order. Unfortunately, benzoyl peroxide does bleach clothing, carpets, bedding, etc., so allow the product to dry completely on the skin before coming in contact with fabrics. A clean, white, inexpensive cotton men's or boy's t-shirt changed nightly will prevent problems with benzoyl peroxide used on the body. Darker-skinned people need to watch that prolonged contact does not cause temporary brown or discolored application areas.

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i have been dealing with the puffy eyes in the morning and deep wrinkles underneath and dry skin that is now all over my face and my ears for 2-3 weeks. after reading the benzoyl peroxide allergy, it made sense. i started using an acne scrub and moisturizer right before my eyelid problem. and for 2 days before it started, i started putting the moisturizer on my eyes. boy, what a mistake! at first i thought it could be a yeast or fungal infection because of the itching and so i used salt water and vinegar mixture in a compress. i eventually added garlic and this helped quite a bit. i was using castor oil as well (that's what they recommend for Blepharitis), and this helped until i underwent surgery. within 2 days it was back and worse than ever. so since then i started using the internal methods to help, and that has helped everything- but to finish it, the above mentioned cure for benzoyl peroxide allergy has so far worked very well (i used the watered down hydrocortisone one time along with a follow up exfoliation just with water and wash cloth). the internal medicines i am taking which on their own are very powerful, but do not finish the job completely, are: blessed thistle tea (very bitter, very cleansing and beneficial to the liver), red rooibos tea (good vitamin K and other beneficial vitamins), echinacea tea (good to improve immune system). i also have discovered reishi mushroom (helps stop allergic reactions amongst many other benefits)- i have found a high quality pill form which i have taken daily for about 4 days. i also take raw apple cidar vinegar in water for ph balance and eat a raw garlic clove for antibiotic properties. since drinking the tea and the reishi pills the swelling has gone done tremendously. today is the first day i have woken up without super swollen eyelids in the past 1 week. they still itch, and while the castor oil does help with this, i am still going to treat with the watered down hydrocortisone cream for a couple days once or twice a day depending on how often i need it. another benefit of the blessed thistle tea has been a slight liver cleanse. i have lost probably five pounds in the midsection.  
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Help! Last week my eye lids began to itch so I went to the doctor and he prescribed me  bousch & lombs bacitracin zinc and polymyxin b sulfate ophthalmic. The medicine cleared away the itching of the eyelids as well as the coloring/inflammation. Then, I got pink eye in my right eye. Cleared up. Then I got pink eye in my left eye. Cleared up. Now my eyelids a swelled very much so and my eyeballs itch as if I have cotton or sandpaper in my eyes. My eyes arent red just swollen and itchy. I do not have allergies and the eye doctor said that if my symptoms did not clear up to come back. Does anyone know by chance what it could be or what I can do for my symtoms (symptoms)? I have never had this problem and my symptoms are changing everyday and not in progressing towards clearing up. Help!
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I have had the SAME problem on and off for years now.

It started about 7-10 years ago and some times I will go years with out an outbreak of any kind.

I cannot pin point it to ONE thing but think the cause is partly environmental and partly dietary.  It seems when the two collide I have an outbreak.

For instance, when I first starting having this problem I used to always seem to have symptoms but not always a full outbreak after I ate hot pepper rings.  Strange I know, but I eat a TON of them and really think that I have some kind of sensitivity to something in them.  Also if I combine the hot peppers with a few alcoholic drinks and add allergy season.....I am a swollen, red eyelided mess.  Sounds weird, but I have pondered this for a very long time.  I just think that I may have a mild pollen allergy but when my body is already dealing with so many other issues it just cannot handle them all and the stress on my body is expressed through my eyes.

I try to watch my diet and sugar intake also during this spring season, but alas after a Friday night out with my husband for calamari with hot peppers and drinks........let's just say I am paying for that now!!

I have dealt with it so many times that I am just starting to accept it as a fact of life, but I am also researching more and now really actively trying to find a way to combat it.

I can usually tell when the problem will begin as I get an itch right at the outside corner of my left eye.  Usually within hours or overnight I end up with swollen, itchy reddish purplish eyes.  It usually gets better throughout the day, but not enough that I feel normal.  Then I start all over again from scratch in the morning.  There are usually scaly looking patches--almost like elephant skin on my lids and sometimes under my eyes.  Oh and the itch is sometimes so BAD that I literally want to scream.  Itching however makes it worse in my opinion.  

The biggest problem is that I cannot really tell what works to stop this.  Sometimes its time and other times I think the myriad of treatments I use help.  I don't really know what to do.  I ice, I put a hot towel...which sometimes makes it feel worse right away (itches more) but it seems the heat does help after a few minutes.

These are my observations so far-

Usually does happen to me in the early spring-summer and not ever that I can recall in the winter.

Antihistamines seem to work over a few days.  I think my biggest problem was that I used to think they would work right away, but I think a constant flow daily does help.

I was prescribed Elidel, which does help after a day or two of use with the swelling and redness

Applying a THICK coat of aquaphor at night helps with the drying that comes after the original onset and helps with the wrinkles and or chaffing from itching and heating of the skin from a warm towel

This time my itching starting on a Sunday night and I was a full blown mess by Monday - Tuesday.  I started Benadryl and then Zyrtec Sunday night as well as the Elidel.

Today is Wednesday and although there is some dryness the swelling and redness is gone and the itch is gone as well.

I think what really helped this time is that I essentially became a recluse.  I shut all the windows (we have super high tree pollen counts right now) cleaned the whole house (which really made the itching and redness worse- dealing with the dust) and my husband picked up two air Hepa filters, which I think really helped.  

I have NEVER recovered this quickly and never looked so normal this quickly.  Yesterday I pretty much made up my mind I would be out of work this weekend.  But I could go out today if I had to.

I plan on taking the Zyrtec for the next month and also I will keep applying the Elidel (which burns the heck out my lids) two times a day.

I also am going to pick up the Nizoral shampoo which I read about in other forums and give that a go.

I am BOUND to find a quick and simple cure to this terrible ailment!!

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I'm 99% sure mine is a reaction to propylene glycol or benzoyl peroxide.  I've ordered something called JuicePlus to try to assist my apparently sensitive system from the inside.  I read some things about it first.  Some people said it was a scheme and others raved about it, so I figure I'll try it for four months instead of purchasing the other vitamins I usually take.  

From the outside, I will only use products that are organic and don't contain all the harsh chemicals that are so commonly found in our beauty products (especially PG & BP, or course).  I found a company that I like called Green People.  I just received my order today, so when I say that I 'like' them, I mean that I like what I've read about them.  I will let you know if their products are any good once I use them.  

One more thing.  I haven't worn make-up in almost 5 months now.  I found a line called Nvey that doesn't use PG.  Has anyone here heard of it or tried it?  I've spent too much on other vitamins/products/solutions for my eyes to buy it now, not to mention the doctor's appointments, but after the next couple of paychecks, I think I'll try some of it.  Let me know if I'm wasting my money or if there's a different line of cosmetics you think I should use.

And, tootired10, I got the Dr. H's normalizing day oil and I've been using it for 3 days.  I can't really tell a difference, but I saw my dad today (after not seeing him for a couple days) and he mentioned that my eyelids looked better.  So, thanks.  Even if it didn't work it feels good, and healthier.  I just wish Dr. H's products weren't so expensive.
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Mine has finally been diagnosed as an autoimmune dermatitis secondary to uncontrolled Hashimoto's Thyroiditis [hypothyroidism]. I found an excellent dermatologist and saw her on Thursday. She told me I have four autoimmune skin conditions right now. The one on my eyelids over eyes and in my eyebrows is the autoimmune dermatitis. It was triggered off by an allergic reaction to Benzalkonium Chloride which is a preservative and disinfectant. It's in the anesthesia for eye exams and I had my first reaction to it in January. During that time, my hypothyroidism was going up and down, and never stable. That was the added component which diagnosed the condition.

I am so sensitive to this ingredient that my eyes turn bright red, burn and itch. And I required a thorough flushing of my eyes and antihistamine eye drops for the reaction to stop. It felt like someone put acid in my eyes. My ophthalmologist no longer puts it in my eyes. She has to use lidocaine without preservatives.

Benzalkonium Chloride or its closely related derivatives [which cause the same reactions] are found in many cosmetics, soaps, lotions, eye treatments including the antibiotics used to treat infections in the eye, eye drops and ointments, and the anesthesia used to numb your eyes before an eye exam.

Luckily, I don't use any cosmetics and haven't for the past 20 years because my skin is so hypersensitive and that is due to the Hashi's.

I was prescribed Desonide ointment for the rash and noticed a different after one application. After a seven day course of that, I'll be switching to Protopic as needed.

Autoimmune conditions are more common in woman.
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Let me throw in a curve ball; I just returned from a 2 day visit to my friends home.  She was complaining of all of the same symptoms.  Leave it to my immune crazy body I now have the same swollen, itchy eye lids.  My eyebrows and face also itch.  As did hers.  She said she had it errupt a few months ago and when I showed up it reappeared.  I hope it is a short term allergy reaction.  Good greif.

Nancy
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SwanSong:  Very, very interesting.  I am currently experiencing an outbreak on my lids just these past few days.  I am so upset because I really thought I had this thing under control.

I too have Hashimoto's!! Also, my new eye rash followed a day of scrubbing bathrooms with all sorts of cleaners, bleach , Windex, ammonia, & disinfectants!!!  My allergies also kicked in & I started shooting Naxonex up my nose , which I just Googled to lean contains Benzalkonium Chloride!!

It's starting to subside, I'm in the very wrinkly, peeling stage but I fascinated to read your post because I'm starting to believe that this could be my problem. I can not tolorate OTC eye drops as well. I am allergic to prescription eye antibiotics such as  Tobramycin (contains) benzalkonium  chloride  too.

Holy moly! Wouldn't this be something to find that this one chemical is causing many of the problems people are experiencing here?

I also searched to find that BC is found in many hair conditioners. Wow!



ctall5:  I'm sorry about the Dr H.  I should have told you to get it from ebay where it's so much cheaper.  Not dramatically but about $12-$15 less.  I hope it works out for you.  I find the oil & the eye balm the only soothing things I can use on my eye area.
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Glad I could be of some help. I use hair care products which contain no preservatives like the BZK. It took me a while to find it. It's only available online at Mastey unless of course your hairdresser uses the products and sells them to you.

If you do a research on the web on BZK you'll find there are other names for the same product. If you search under Benzalkonium Chloride you find a link which is a PDF called Material Safety Data Sheet. Here's some of the synonyms for it:
Zephiral
Germicin
Osvan
Paralkan
Cequartyl
Benzalkonium A
Benirol
Bayclean
Ammonium alkyldimethyl(phenylmethyl) chloride
Quaternary ammonium compounds
etc.

It says skin inflammation is characterized by itching, scaling, reddening or occasionally blistering. Do tell! And it can cause dermatitis, can cause corneal damage or blindness, skin inflammation and blistering. Of course they're referring to the chemical alone causing these

Nasonex is also bad because many people have gotten Rosacea from using it. That's exactly when my Rosacea started too, after I had been given a prescription of it.

Also the secondary offender for me was Ocean Spray Nasal Irrigator. I used that when I had a cold and my nose was stuffy. About two days after using it my eyes turned red and my eyebrows started itching and flaking.

I'm also allergic to the antibacterial found in most liquid antibacterial hand soaps called Tricolsan.
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Here are some websites I've been using that have been helpful in finding products that don't contain the toxins/chemicals that I suspect are causing my problems.

To find out what ingredients are in your everyday products, use this site:

http://www.cosmeticdatabase.com/index.php?nothanks=1

To find synonyms for the chemical you're sensitive/allergic to, use this site:

http://chem2.sis.nlm.nih.gov/chemidplus/ProxyServlet?objectHandle=DBMaint&actionHandle=default&nextPage=jsp/chemidlite/ResultScreen.jsp&TXTSUPERLISTID=000057556

To order products that don't contain toxins, check out this site:

http://www.kanikernaturalhealth.co.uk/page--Toxin-and-Chemical-Free--ste_toxins.html

To search for these toxins/chemicals in certain foods, use this site (although, it's not as helpful as the others):

http://foodfacts.com/search/index.cfm

And, last but not least, for those of you who mentioned that you were allergic to Benzalkonium Chloride (I had initially thought that I had that sensitivity, too.), I found this site:

http://www.skinandaging.com/article/3002

Scroll down about half way to the article entitled: "Finding a Solution for the Solution".

Hope this helps!
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I am trying to figure out how to post an answer to this issue.
Believe it or not, some itchy eyelids are caused by a mite called a demodex.
By removing one lash and testing it by looking under a microscope, proper treatment can assist you in possibly eliminating your problem.
I didn't read this idea on any of the posts.
hope this goes through.
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DRYEYEDOC!  Super post!

After reading your post and much Googleing, I think you have uncovered for this forum, a direct cause of some of the problems we have been experiencing.

If you read up, you'll see that I have found NEEM OIL to be of great benefit.  NEEM is a natural anti-parasite so I think I can make a connection for myself with DEMODEX.

I also have a dog and I read that this parasite is prevalent in dogs and NEEM is used to control it.  I wonder if my dog is effecting my Blepharitis!!!  I previous thought that contact with my pet caused my skin rashes & eye problems due to a general allergy to his dander.  Now I'm thinking it may be his mites.

After reading up on DEMODEX treatments online, I see that SEA BUCKTHORN OIL is also used to teat DEMODEX.  Demodex has recently been linked to rosacea too and rosacea sufferers appear to be getting some help by using both neem & sea buckthron oil.

INTERESTING!

I'm going to try a combination of both oils and use them widely on my facial area as these mites can live and be transferred easily from on part of the face to the hair follicles pretty easily.  This may be why my eye problem is recurring.

Thanks so much for the information!!!

I'll post again after I retreat with both oils.
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I was not very smart and used Vaporub on an insect bite on an eyelid. I admit it is totally my fault I have this problem.

The eyelid and area above have been red and swollen for four days.

I would have thought the redness and swelling would be gone by now, but it is still there.

Is there anything I can do to reduce the swelling and get rid of the redness?

Thank you.
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I'd be very interested in your results re the DEMODEX.  I'm a 53 year old woman and I've had blepharitis to one degree or another for several years now (maybe as far back as 2000).  It's been worse in the last 2-3 years, but it's never been as bad as it is right now.  I didn't usually have much itching before, but it's itching like crazy lately, and the left eyelid is swollen and wrinkly-- maybe puckered is a better word than wrinkly, but I suppose it's a mix of the two.

I haven't worn makeup in years and do not wear contacts.  I have the opposite of Graves (Hashimoto's), i.e, underactive thyroid for which I take Levothyroxine.  I have Multiple Chemical Sensitivities, which is an auto-immune problem, and I have various other auto-immune problems, along with all the usual allergies.  Over the last few days I've had labrynthitis, which is also a recurring problem.  Sometimes it's positional and goes away fairly quickly, but the kind I have right now tends to stick around for a while, like a virus, and I noticed that this particularly bad (for me) blepharitis flare-up seems to coincide with the onset of the dizziness a few days ago.  Or maybe it's just a coincidence.  I'm wondering if BOTH problems have to do with being rundown, though.  

It's also been very hot and very smoky where I live (San Francisco Bay Area).  I've been shut in an apt to keep the smoky air out and running fans constantly.  The fans have a tendency to dry my eyes, especially if I don't have them oscillating, so it may also be a factor.  

In a related incident, about 6 months or so ago I woke up to find my left eyeBALL  was very red and looked like raw hamburger!!!  The blepharitis had gone INTO the eye.  I saw my opthalmologist for it and he prescribed some steroid drops, which quickly cleared it up, but it was scary to think it could go into the eye itself.  

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I also have this problem.  I wake every morning with itchy, swollen eyelids.  They seem to clear at times  leaving me with scaly, dry skin, so bad that I can't apply eyeliner without it looking broken up.  I went on vacation 2 weeks ago and I had no problem at all.  I have 2 questions.  Where do you buy the Neem oil?  I'm willing to give it a try.  My next question is does everyone suffering from this "eye" thing have a dog?
Thanks for your advice.
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No dog or any other pet here.  
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Anyone using or used Proactive and had this problem?  I love their products for my skn but wondering if there is a connection. My lids seem to itch more at night. They also get red and puffy....scaly after a few days.  I also would get this problem when I was a child.  Thought I had grown out of it.  Going to try some suggestions listed and keep my fingers crossed. Also going to stop PA for a while and see what happens.  I went nuts and order lots of their products and love them but am afraid this is the cause.........
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I have had the itchy eyes off and on for about 1 year. I do wear contacts and in the past year switched to a new brand, so I am not sure if that is the problem or something else.  

Last night my eyes were soooo itchy I must have rubbed at them for 20 minutes to get some relief well when I got up and looked in the mirror my eyes were so red and swollen i kinda freaked and put an ice pack on my eyes, the redness and swelling are better this am but not completely gone.  

I am 40 and noticed a drastic change around my eyes recently, not only lines but dark circles.  I see my eye dr next week and hopefully I may have some type of answer.  In the meantime any suggestions is appreciated!!!
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BTW I did have discharge on my eyelashes this am.
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I just went through this same issue for almost a month. I would wake up EVERYDAY with red, scaley, puffy eyes i looked like i was 102! It was just awful. After changing EVERYTHING i did, eat, drink, use....i went to my dr. he said it was def a contact dermatitis and i need to figure it out.....he gave me a kenalog allergy shot and a script for Mometasone Furoate cream. I put a little of this on, but the next day it was GONE and then i started reintroducing all my "products" back into my life....I am pretty sure i have found the cause DOVE "SENSITIVE SKIN" soap...I stopped using this and all my symptoms are gone!!!!!!!!!!!!! I can't believe it! ALSO i have had TERRIBLE hand eczema for years - this is also GONE!!!!! I have been using baby shampoo as soap and shampoo right now...until i brave up to try out a new soap...but i really think this was it....GET IT OUT OF YOUR HOUSE if you use it! and wash anything it touched! (soap dishes, shower caddies, bed sheets, pillow cases, hand towels....etc...)
I know how awful skin issues are...especially on your face! I hope this helps!
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I am also suffering from the same thing! What i have found to be a great help is Aloe vera. We have a Aloe Vera plant in our house, snapping off a leaf and putting the 'goo' on my face really helped alot with the dry skin. Also washing my face with water with oilatum in it, helped soften the skin. So i would recommend the Aloe vera, it makes any dry skin turn slightly brown and fall off.

-Still wishing i would de-swell though :-(
-As many of you all i'm getting given from the doctors is drops, with no success.
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I've had red eyelids for 3 months now. Ophthalmologist says its dermatitis caused by allergy. Got major relief from washing face with Tea Tree Oil soap whenever itching begins. I eat mixed nuts every day. I noticed that it got worse yesterday after eating nuts. I skipped today and it's clearing up. Stay tuned!
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I would just like to point out that like Joe DiMagio's 56 straight games in which he got a hit that this conversation tread is the longest ever posted at the two eye forums.

JCH MD
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28 year old male.  No pets, contacts, face creams, make up (except when I feel saucey) J/k.  This eye irritation is very new to me.  I've had itchy eye lids a few times at night and last night I really rubbed my left one good out of habit.  This morning my eye lid was red and swollen.  
I'd like to thank everyone first of all because I'm 99% sure that reading this forum is more beneficial than a doctor visit.  I did use a pretty liberal application of acne cream with BP about 2 days prior.  And I've been using OTC red relief eye drops more often because I've been working nights and early mornings and I'm trying to not look like a freak.  Would also like to know where to procure the correct neem oil solution.  I have a bottle of neem oil concentrate for the purpose of organic pest control in the garden.  It clearly states on the back, "Keep away from face, skin, and eyes!  May cause irritation if absorbed by the skin."  Is this just the concentration?  So I would be careful if anyone planned on spraying the stuff you get at home depot on your face!  The thought crossed my mind after the 14th salt water eyeball wash this morning.
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Hi Everyone:  Last November, I had an outbreak similar to the experiences described in this posting.  I too, have been to numerous specialists.  My eyes have gotten so bad, that one of my students told me that I looked like an eighty year old person who has not grayed yet.  I had my first outbreak in November, 2007.  Since then, I have had three other outbreaks.  I am beginning to believe this is a viral condition, as it goes in very definite stages.  First I have the intense itching.  Then several days of intense swelling, in which I feel my eyeballls will bust and the skin on my eyelids has been rubbed with sandpaper.  Then, around the forth day, the itching is still intense, but the pressure subsides.  And then it looks as though I have been punched in the face.  The area around my eyes is deep red, looking like blook beneath the surface.  The itching begins to subside at this point and then I am left with dryy scaly eyelids.  I too, have aged from this affliction, during the past eight months.  I am beginning to believe I have caught a viral affliction, because of the stages it goes through.  I also seem to be afflicted with this when my defenses are down.  Any thoughts on this?  Peggy
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Check this site out.
http://eye.taragana.net/archive/highly-infectious-viral-conjunctivitis-affecting-all-age-groups/
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I am thinking this is the herpes virus, sad to say.  Just my opinion.

http://www.aafp.org/afp/20021101/1723.html
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One other site to look at.  Pfin

Herpes Zoster Ophthalmicus (HZO)
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What is HZO?
Herpes zoster ophthalmicus (HZO), is caused by the same virus that causes chickenpox and shingles. When the virus involves the skin around the eye and the eye itself, it is called HZO. It is not the same virus that causes herpes simplex.

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What are the symptoms of HZO?
HZO can cause a rash with small blisters to break out on the forehead and around the eye on one side of your face. Sometimes you will have pain in the same area of your face a few days before the outbreak. Infection of the eye causes pain, swelling of the eyelid and redness.

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Who gets HZO and why? Can I prevent it?
There is nothing you can do to prevent HZO. It is not common in children, but it occurs more often as people get older. Men and women are equally affected. People who develop HZO have typically had chickenpox or have been exposed to the chickenpox virus in the past.

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How can my doctor tell if I have HZO?
If you have HZO, you will probably have a rash that looks like chickenpox, usually on one side of your face or forehead. Besides examining you, your doctor will not need to do any additional tests to see if you have HZO. Sometimes herpes simplex infections can resemble HZO. However, the patterns of the rashes are different and your doctor will be able to tell them apart.

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How often is the eye involved?

The eye itself is affected in 10 percent of patients. Your doctor will examine you to see if the eye is involved. If it is, you may need to see an ophthalmologist (a doctor who specializes in treating eyes) for further treatment.

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How is HZO treated?
If you think you might have HZO, see your doctor right away. Early treatment with antiviral medicines (in pill form, drop form or both) can reduce pain and the duration of symptoms. Your doctor can give you advice about treatment, but rest is also important. Cool compresses can ease the pain and rash. Pain medicine such as aspirin or acetaminophen (one brand: Tylenol) may help.

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How long will I have the infection?
If you have pain from HZO, it should get better as the rash goes away. With uncomplicated HZO, you should recover in a few weeks, but it may take longer in older or sicker patients.

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Can I infect other people?
If you have HZO, you can give the virus that causes chickenpox to other people. Therefore, you should avoid people who have not had chickenpox (especially pregnant women) and very sick patients (such as patients with cancer or AIDS). If you live with children who have not had chickenpox, you should tell your doctor. They may need to be vaccinated.

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More Information

Common Infections

    * Mononucleosis
    * Shingles
    * Bronchiolitis and Your Child
    * Cytomegalovirus
    * West Nile Virus
    * SARS

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Source

Written by familydoctor.org editorial staff.

Evaluation and Management of Herpes Zoster Ophthalmicus by S Shaikh, M.D., and CN Ta, M.D. (American Family Physician November 1, 2002, http://www.aafp.org/afp/20021101/1723.html)

Reviewed/Updated: 07/08
Created: 04/03
Copyright © 2003-2008 American Academy of Family Physicians
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Well, I've pretty much confirmed it. I appear to be allergic to at least one type of nut in the mix I eat - Brazil, cashew, hazlenut, almond, or pecan. Since I stopped, my symptoms have cleared. I still have some dry skin around the eyes that I'm treating with lotion. I believe it may be the almonds. I had cleared up for a couple of days, then I ate a piece of pie with almond paste in the crumb topping. I had a major flare up right after.

It sounds like there may be more than one problem being described in this blog. What worked for me, may not work for everyone -- tea tree oil, neem, avoiding nuts, etc. Don't rule out food allergies. Keep a daily log of everything you eat. Read lables if you tend to eat prepared, boxed, or canned foods. Be particularly wary of foods you eat very often, as these are the ones that are most like the culprit. Even if you were never allergic to a particular food, you CAN develop an allergy to it over time especially if you eat it every day. Good luck and don't rely on doctors to solve your problems. If you want to find the root cause, you'll have to find it on your own. Best case, a doctor may prescribe a med to clear your symptoms, but they'll rarely solve the problem at it's root.
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most sufferers of eye infections such as bleperitis are allergic to pets . I am 77 yrs old & have never had any problem with my eyes until i got a cat 1 year ago ,I have tried all kinds of so called remedies,all to no avail,bathing my eyes with cold tea ,has helped,It's an old cure for sore eyes ,    cassandra......
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Just saw this today   http://www.epinions.com/content_3850018948

Check all your soap products for this ingredient!
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hello all, my little boy is 2 and 9 months and i have just had a major break though with his terrible eczema, so wish to share what i have learnt with all and and would like you to pass the info i give you to anyone you can. out of sheer desperation i  went to a kinesiologist in shirley surrey (uk) which was the best £30 i have ever spent!!http://www.croydonallergyclinic.com/treatments.html, but do not despair i will tell you what to do as most eczema sufferers will respond to the same advice, but do try and get to a kinesiologist they are miracle workers!  the first thing you must cut out is ALL citric acid in every shape and form (and if you are breast feeding that means you as well.), oranges lemons limes grapefruit strawberries pineapple kiwi grapes.  You MAY have apples pears peaches bananas plums cherries mango paw paw water melon (not other melon) ORGANIC strawberries and grapes /raisins/sultanas  are fine to have as they do not contain pesticides. The pesticides used on non organic grapes and strawberries contain citric acid. avoid tomatoes unless organic or beef tomatoes you can also have organic ketchup and organic baked beans. avoid oxo cubes use knorr chicken or vegetable. avoid vinegar use cider vinegar. The pesticide used on ALL wheat contains guess what, citric acid. only have organic bread pasta biscuits,  and ONLY  HAVE WHITE NOT WHOLEMEAL as this irritates the intestines. organic weet-a-bix no good as its whole grain! try corn flakes rice crispies porridge oats.  bake with white organic flour and only have white rice NOT brown  also  for breast feeding mums organic wine or Argentinean wine and only budweiser for beer. for sweeties try kadburys choc buttons or milky bar choc buttons.NO haribos etc, only have full fat milk (i use organic) semi skimmed no good ( must be citric acid in the process in making it semi skimmed (half and half), cheese strings no good, but normal cheese is fine as is philadelphia. yoghurt and fromage frais fine but look out for the citric acid!. do not use breaded things like fish fingers as the breadcrumbs contain citric acid but organic is fine. Plain meat fish smoked salman ham vegetables olives butter olive oil sunflower oil eggs potatoes salad are fine, obviously if you know your little one is allergic to any of the 'ok' foods i have listed, avoid them. i would avoid sauages even organic as the 'spices' are generally no good. ONLY use SURCARE or 'boots' sensitive skin washing powder/liquid/softner/wul (avoid all othe 'skin friendly soap powder/liquid, they contain citric acid) for ALL the familys clothes. use non citrus dishwasher tablets and cleaning products. for hand soap use 'simple' tablet soap, pump soap contains citric acid.for hair use l'Oreal elvive multi vitamin shampoo and conditioner (white bottle with green edging) or l'oreal kerestas (white bottle orange lid) for teeth use aqua fresh milk teeth  (i use 0-3) and for the skin oddly enough the only creams that test ok for eczema are pure vaseline and aqueous cream. also izaac tested ok for 0.5% hydrocortisone cream which i have now stopped using.( i have to admit that i did continue to use a bit of diprobase for about 3-4 days once i started the 'programme' i didn't have the faith to just go straight onto aqueous) but have since stopped) i just shower him with water to wash him but you can use aqueous for washing also. nappies only use huggies and huggies pure wipes. aloe vera gel is in pampas nappies and sensetive wipes which contain citric acid! ahh for drinks diluted apple juice full fat milk water or tesco hi juice ,only apple pomegranate and rasberry. i cannot emphasise enough on reading EVERY label for the dreaded citric acid and wheat (unless organic wheat)  you will start to see a difference in a matter of days I PROMISE. i have only been doing this for 2 weeks so far and fell i need to tell the world!!! please do not cheat.  as for medicines izaac tested ok for nurofen (strawberry) piriton benadryl and tixylix for chesty coughs. i would avoid mushrooms pombear crisps and nuts peanut butter and jam and marmite. Honey is fine and so are hoola-hoop crisps. i hope this all makes sense, sorry its a bit jumbled up, it seems alot but it is really easy to do. please let me know how you get on and spread the word. one last thing i looked up citric acid on wikapedia and there was a link to citric acid allergy it gave the sympoms of dry itchy skin dark circles under eyes, bleeding cracked skin etc. it makes sense to me that if you are allergic to citric acid (and probably ALL eczema sufferers are)it is a poison to you, remove it and watch the body heal itself form with-in!! please try this for just 2 weeks you have nothing to loose and it really is sooo easy.  love to all. X
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I just want to say that I really sympathize with everyone.  This is all new to me, and just decided to google the "itchy and swollen eyelids"
Well first I felt good to know I am not the only one on the planet with this, because that is how it feels at first. My symptoms are"
Outside of left eyelid gets itchy, and puffs up a little.
When scratched starts to swell and then the feeling of sand inside the upper eye.  
Then burning.

As long as I keep touching or rubbing or scratching, the swelling will stay.  If I am strong enough to not touch the swelling will subside, but the itching stays.  When it finally goes down, it gets dry, wrinkled and dark.

I am female, south asian descent and has had seasonal allergies, but nothing like this.

Observations are that when I am stressed, tired, or close to my menstruation.  I have had it only twice now, so will keep an eye on that.
I got really scared after readind the symptoms on - Herpes Zoster Ophthalmicus (HZO) a website I saw in my search.  I do have herpes Zoster, and get a blister every other month or so, around my menses.
I have tried the polysporin, allergy drops, vitamin E capsules help with the dryness (I break it open and rub on a drop).  I am just starting the process...optometrist, then opthomalagist, etc.  But after reading all this, I do not feel hopeful.  I really hope it is an allergy, but am likely to think it has something to do with the auto-immune system.
It could be all those things put together.  

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Oh thank goodness I have found this site!  I have suffered from this eye problem for two years and I am SICK of it!  Been to an allergist, dermatologist, etc.  Nothing but pricey medications that didn't work.

I am trying to get referred to an opthamologist.

My lower eyelids have been red, itchy, scaly, burning for two years now and I do have daily disposable contacts but only wear them on "special" occasions.  I am sick of my glasses and no makeup...

I just want an answer to my problem, I want to know what it is and hopefully when I do see an opth. they will diagnose me.  Good luck to you all and hope that this widespread problem will eventually find a cure.
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What a roller coaster ride this has been!  Just stumbled upon this site and was soooo happy to find others experiencing the same symptoms (red, swollen, itchy eyelids).  I guess it truly is "misery loves company".  I have been struggling with this beast for about a year and can not pin point the cause.  Have been to multiple doc's and got no where.  Haven't worn make-up, have changed out all soaps, detergents, hair products, & cleaning products.  I'm just frustrated!!  This site has at least given me hope and a LOT of different directions to go in.  I'm going to give the NEEM oil a try as so many of you have suggested this.  I will post my progress.  Thanks to all of you for your helpful information.  I now don't feel alone in this quest.
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I had really red, puffy, itchy eyelids for a few weeks and I didn't know what to do...I tried putting fresh aloe from a plant on them overnight and I didn't feel any better...then I started applying vaseline on them overnight and after just one night I felt sooo much better. After about a week I am healed.  It is the only thing that works!
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I used to have this problem, on and off for over a year, but have finally sorted it out. Two potential causes to consider:

1. Dry eyes. If your eyes do not produce enough lubricant, your tear ducts will produce tears to lubricate your eyes instead and the excess liquid will spill onto the eyelids causing them to become inflamed. An over the counter eye lubricant from the chemist such as hypromellose will sort this out.

2. Allergy. There is something to which you are allergic - the tricky part is establishing what it is. Don't rule out anything you've used for a long time and assume it is a new product - you can become sensitive to things to which you have been exposed for a long time. In my case it was the washing powder/liquid I had been using happily for eight years! While your eyelids are still sore and you are attempting to find relief from the dry itching, Vaseline helps, as does Simple Eye Ointment BP, available over the counter from the chemist (however you may have to use this in moderation - it contains paraffin and I found this made the puffiness worse if used too much - same with baby oil). Olive oil works a treat too, with no side effects - don't laugh - hospitals recommend it for dry skin on newborn babies. Oral anti-histamines and hydrocortisone cream reduce the symptoms and make them easier to live with, but don't cure the problem. To establish the cause, eliminate all perfumed products with which you are in contact: perfume, shower gel, shampoo, moisturiser, cleanser, make up etc - everything you can think of. Use aqueous cream (available in a chemist) as a cleanser and olive oil as a moisturiser. Use baby shampoo and soap in the shower. If your condition improves you know one of these was the culprit - reintroduce one at a time until you find the guilty one and never use it again! If this doesn't resolve the problem, change your washing powder (even if you have been using the same one for years) - switch to one that claims to be hypoallergenic and see if that helps. If not, think about all the other things in your house or work that may be the problem - spray polish, washing up liquid etc. Having established what caused my problem I discovered that I didn't even need to touch an item washed in the washing powder to have a reaction - even the 'fumes' from opening a drawer of clean clothes set it off again or being with someone wearing clothes washed in the same stuff. Good luck with finding what causes yours - it is truly debilitating suffering from this. You'll be pleased to hear that not only are my eyelids mended - and no different from before the problem thankfully, despite all the horrible symptoms, but I sleep much better, can taste food, have loads more energy.
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I have an update on my own travails with blepharitis.  It's been a real problem for a couple of years (longer, but more acute over the last two years).  It had been getting worse and worse since the beginning of this year, but now it's mostly GONE AWAY!!!  

I get very little sun and decided to try a Vitamin D supplement with what I thought would be a vain hope of alleviating the problem somewhat since Vitamin D is supposed to be good for your skin.  It couldn't hurt.  I also added Vitamin E.  Within about a week of taking it every day, the blepharitis WENT AWAY and I now only get occasional itchiness (usually if I skip a couple of days with the vitamins), but no red, scaly patches or swelling.  I don't know which one it making the difference, but I strongly suspect it's the Vitamin D.  

Mind you, I also restarted taking other vitamins at the same time, but I've taken the same combinations before on a regular basis without a noticeable difference in the blepharitis.  OTOH, I've had brief remissions before (but never more than a couple of weeks and it never really went away to this degree), so it could be that the overall supplements made a difference and I didn't realize it at the time.  

All I know is that I'm THRILLED to no longer have the red, scaly, swollen patches all over and around my eyelids.  It's been about 6 weeks now, I think, and so far, so good.  It's possible that whatever it is is simply coincidentally in remission, but I don't think so -- not with the way it had gotten so bad over the last few months and how dramatically it has improved in such a short time.  I hadn't realized just how chronically swollen my eyelids had been for so long -- it's like I've lost weight in my eyelids :-)  I had forgotten how thin they could be!

I bought the extra Vitamin D at Whole Foods.  It's Country Life brand "Dry Vitamin D" (1000 I.U.) Vegetarian tablets and I only take one a day (with food).  I don't remember the price (may have been about $10 for 100 tablets), but you KNOW it's cheaper than the prescription meds that don't do any good.  I'm sure any brand Vitamin D (and/or E) supplement would work just as well -- that's just the one I happen to be taking.

I'm a very allergic person who also has chemical sensitivities.  I don't have pets, and   nothing has changed for me except the addition of the Vitamin D and Vitamin E, which is certainly a simple solution.  

I hope this helps someone else out there who is suffering from this annoying, uncomfortable and embarrassing condition!  

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I too have been troubled with blepharitis and have tried the baby shampoo eye washes and applying vaseline, also tried using dandruff shampoo.  No help.  I am now trying vaseline alone because it soothes the dry tight skin.  I will also try Vitamin D and stop eating my daily nuts.  Thanks to all for your ideas
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I have been having this problem for about 2 weeks now. My left eye just started itching and then it got worse and spread to both eyes. Every moring when i wake up my eyes are so swollen i can barely open them. Then during the day it goes down but my eyelids are all fakey and gross looking. My mom said it looked like i have a terrible disease. My brother said it looked like i got punched. My sister said i looked like an 90 year old lady and I'm only 20!!!! It's so embarassing, i don't like to go anywhere because i don't want people to see me like this! I usually wear make-up so i'm wondering if that may have been the cause but i've been wearing the same kind for a long time. I also just moved into a new apartment and my roommate has a dog so that may be it also. I just want to fix this because its making me feel depressed. I want to try the neem oil but i don't know where to get it. Where can neem oil be purchased?
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By the way, thanks everyone for the advice. You saved me a trip to the doctor.
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Last december i woke up with dry, itchy swollen eyelids. after talking with my cousin, who had the same problem, she told me to start using organic face wash and eye cream, and it went away within a few days.. about two months ago I thought i would try a new face wash Clearasil Ultra acne clearing gel (I had been using Clearasil cream) and woke up that very next moring with dry itchy swollen eyelids..and nothing I try seems to help. I tryed Nivea cream and it went away for one full day but returned the next morning.. this is so frustrating!!
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My problems started last December/January, too.  I, also, used Clearasil vanishing cream.  I discovered on my own that I was allergic/sensitive to most chemicals with propyl in the word (propylene glycol, hydroxypropyl methylcelulose, etc.).  It was in everything - food, makeup, lotion, etc.  I have finally been able to avoid it for a while, but I think I may also be sensitive to benzoyl peroxide, which is why I mentioned the Clearasil above.  I haven't used anything with that in it for a few months either.  Anywho...try to find all natural products and lay off the chemicals for a while.  I use Burt's Bee's and Suki products.  The Dr. Hauschka makeup is good, too.  I just wish it wasn't so expensive.  BE CAREFUL with products that say they're organic or natural...they lie - so read ingredients!  I think everyone has a different cause, so it's just trial and error until you find yours.  Hope this helps...I know how frustrating it can be.  Depressing, too.
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I wanted to share my experience with itchy, red, eyelids as well.  I had this problem a year ago and suffered for months before deciding it looked like a yeast rash my kids used to get when they were little.  I tried using a Lotrimin cream on my eyelids and it cleared everything up within 2 days!!.  It was a miracle.
Unfortunately, now the problem is back and the Lotrimin doesn't seem to be working!  It started with one eyelid and has moved to the other now.  I'm thinking it is related to an allergy.  In my case probably a seasonal allergy since it happens the same time of year each time.  I'm going to keep using the Lotrimin and start an antihistamine.  Hopefully, I'll find some relief.  I've found that stopping eyemakeup doesn't help at all for me and actually makes the itching seem worse!!!

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I wonder if anyone can help me. My eye problems started yesterday, my eye started to itch around the brow area as well as in the eye and I started sneezing. I didnt think anything of this as it happens quite often so I put some eye drops in and waited for it to subside as it usualy does. The sneezing stopped but my eyes got itchier and itchier as the night went on and after about 2 hours my eyes were really swollen my right eye nearly closed. I took a couple of anti histamines during the evening and it seemed to stop. This morning when I got up I thought that it would be better but no, there is no itching but the right eye is still as swollen and puffy and the left eye is still slightly puffy but not as bad. Does anyone have any idea what could have caused this and if it will go down soon.  
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Hi, my eyes began bothering me around 10 days ago. They first started tearing alot, especially outdoors. Then they began to get red on the outer corners and a little crusty especially at night and in the am.  Then the eyelids began to feel itchy and red, and it seemed to be my left eye more than the right. I wear make-up every day and decided to give my eyes a rest. I stayed inside for two days studying and did not wear any make-up, because I suspected possibly that my eye liners somehow got contaminated with something. I creeped myself out thinking I had an abundance of dust mites or eyelash lice! I applied vaseline about 3-4 times a day. I felt better. I put make-up on two days ago and did some errands and by the end of the day they felt itchy and red again. I tried to de-contaminate my eye pencil sharpeners and the eye pencil tips with rubbing alcohol. The next day I applied my make-up as usual and didn't seem to have a problem right away. Went for a 45 minute walk with a friend outside in the mid afternoon, by the night time they got red, swollen and itchy. I went to the Dr.s today and she said it was allergies, that there is an abundance of ragweed this year. (I live in the northeast, New England area.) She told me to take Claritan and gave me two eye drop prescriptions. I'm not sure if these treatments will work yet, but will post agin in a couple of days.
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Just thought I'd let ya'll know that the two eye drop prescriptions I've been using have worked like a charm for me. My itchy, red, swollen eyelids felt so much better just after 36 hours or so, and now I could say that after just five days they are pretty much back to normal.  Here are the names and doses:

Tobradex (tobramycin and dexamethasone opthalmic suspension USP) 5 mL
               Two drops in eyes four times a day.

Neomycin and Polymyxin B Sulfates and Hydrocortisone Opthalmic SuspensionUSP      7.5 mL      One drop in each eye twice a day.
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Update - I finally went to the eye doc.  Told him that the diluted baby shampoo scrubs were making my eyes so sore and weepy.  He stopped them and gave me a prescription ointment to smear all over my eye lids and under my eyes and around the skin at the side of my eyes.  After one week they are sooo much better.  I go back to see him next week and fear he will tell me to restart the scrubs.
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I HAVE HAD BLEPHARITIS FOR 12YEARS WHAT NIGHTMARE I HAVE TRIED EVERYTHING UNDER THE SUN, WITH NOTHING SEEMING TO WORK..MY EYELIDS ARE RED , ITCHY, BURN, AND I HAVE A SENSATION THAT I HAVE SOMETHING IN MY EYE AT ALL TIMES, CONSTANT DISCHARGE.....
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I am so glad I am not alone with this. I have been on and off steroids for the last month. Been to the ER because I woke up and couldn't open my eyes they were so red, sore and swollen. It even started to make my lips dry, swollen and red. In the past month I have tried so many OTC and perscription drugs. What has taken the edge off the itching for me was Zytec, Pepcid and Benadryl taken daily. I am lucky in the fact that Benadryl does not make me tired. It just seems as soon as the steroid are done this comes back in a few days. I will try some of your suggestions. Love looking like I am 100 this wrinkles are terrible
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Hi!  I've had red, itchy, and scaly eyes for about 6 months now.  I thought I picked something up from the kids at the school in which I teach.  Some things that have helped me along the way are stop drinking wine.  It might be alcohol all together.  I also have been using a Eucerin cream on my eyelids which has helped a lot.  You can also use a vitamin E liquid.  Do not use vaseline in the sun.  I did this and it made it worst.  I stopped using the steroid creams since it made my eyes wrinkled and aged.  My next step is to go to an allergist and get tested to see what I am allergic to.  Eczema has developed on my body as well throughout it all.  I hope this helps.
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hi all, my daughter woke up with her right eye swollen and red, I took her in to the dr's and he gave her Amoxicillin and said that it's an infection, this was yesterday and now tonight b4 she went to sleep, her eye swelled just a bit more and now her left eye is starting to do the same thing.  I'm not sure what I can do to help her right now, i hope that the Amoxicillin works.  I wonder what kind of infection would cause this.
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My wife started this about 4 months ago.  All of the symptoms, redness, swelling, irritation, etc. are there.  She is going to stop using the perfume she has been wearing.  In the meantime, preparation H really helps.  Also, I thing we are going to look at trying neem oil.
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Hello again!

Just checking back in to report my progress and my tips.

My condition as greatly improved ( not totally gone) and here's what I'm doing and my recommendations.

Wash with mild soap only! or no soap if you do not wear makeup.  I use L'Occitane Honey bee bars.  Expensive but lasts 10x longer than any other bar soap so I think it actually costs less.

Avoid hot water and warm compresses.  The heat only draws the histamine (itch) to the surface and the constant water is will dehydrate the skin.

After washing DO NOT WAIT until your lids have completely dried before using anything on them!  You want to get them protected and seal in any moisture pronto!
After washing or shower I PAT my skin with a towel and immediatly pat on Lubriderm Intense Skin Repair Body Lotion with Itch Relief****** on my eye area. I wait one minute then seal it in with Dr Hauschka Eye Balm.  I PAT it on gently and them smooth it along both upper & lower lash lines.

I use OTC drops ( Visine Allergy) once or twice a day as my eyes are constantly red and gritty and this seems to help.  DO NOT ever let any eye drops touch the skin around your eyes!  It will burn the lids and contribute to the problem.  Be sure to have a barrier of protection on your lids before using drops and then hold a soft tissue in the corner to absorb any run off.  

Carry a pot of Dr. H eye balm with you and reapply whenever your eye start to tear outside.  Your tears are contributing to your condition!!!  Blot tear away with a soft tissue.  DO NOT RUB!

DO NOT EVER RUB YOUR EYES!  I know how hard it is.  Painful actually but every time you rub your eyes you cause little fissures in the skin that is really contributing to the problem.

Change you pillow cases frequently and vacuum your bed!  DO NOT USE DRYER SHEETS!

Neem oils really helped me get out of my really bad point BUT it is very strong and COULD acerbate your condition.  Dr. H eye balm contains some neem oil and along with the other emollients it works very well. Dr H Balm is very expensive but IMO, worth every penny! (look for it on ebay cheaper)

My condition was minimal during the Summer months and I spend a great deal of time outdorrs in the sun.  I suspect that sunlight helps the over all problem.

**** If the skin around your eyes is severely inflamed this may BURN.  If so wash it off immediatly and just use the eye balm until your skin improves.

I hope this helps!  This is the very best my eyes have been in a long time.  No steroids (masking the problem) no more doctors giving me the bums rush.

I feel for each and every one of you because I know how painful and debilitating this condition is not to mention age accelerating facially and depressing.


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I had this same problem, and after much effort got it heeled up.  The itching and swelling starting at my eye-lashes, very itchy, and then making my eye-lids swollen, red and itchy.
I'm convinced it was do to bacteria in my eye makeup.
To help it heal, I used Benzolconium and  gentle hand soap, and washed my eye-lids, with cotton balls, especially the eye lashes, THREE times a day.
You can get Benzoconium in Band-Aid Hurt-Free Antiseptic Wash.
I tossed out all of my mascara, eyeliner, shadow, and face powder, and got new.  Expensive, I know, but the itching and swelling was so bad, I was glad for the relief, after only a couple days.  By Monday my eyes were better enough to begin wearing my NEW makeup.
Margee
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I ended up being allergic to eye shadow.  Finally found one I can use "Merle Norman".
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Interesting as I mentioned that when I get sun, my lids are fine.  Lack of Vit D could be connected.  Interesting!
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Well, I have the same thing going on with my eyelids. Went to the dermatologist and he gave me elidel. Now, my right eye is affected. Mostly burning, and swelling eyelids starting in the corner near my nose. Where do you buy Neem oil and Dr. Hauschka eye balm? I am willing to try anything. I have an appt with my eye dr, but sounds from all the post, that may not be the answer. Thanks.
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Both Dr. H eye balm and neem can be bought at Whole Foods.  Neem at any health food store.  Dr. H is expensive & I will suggest that you look for it on Ebay as I get it much cheaper there and I go through plenty of it.
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its alot to read. I think vitamin D or lack of it, could be problem.

Also I had once aa plant in my living room, and when ever I went in there, my face etc. burned.
I thought |I had fever, till I discoveed, it was this and threw out the plant I was allergic
to.

seems to be allergies and they are very hard to define.

good luck
Anna

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I also have that hot feeling in my face and around my eyes, along with the all above mentioned eyelid problems. I went to the eye doctor today and he said I had allergic conjuctivitis. He prescribed Lotemax. Don't know if this will work. Hope so. But I am going to keeping checking the post on here. I have never had this kind of problem before and it is very frustrating. I don't know if it is my eyes or just my eyelids.
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I have red itchy eyes that started after the fires out here. I'm sure I'm allergic to the smoke and whatever else is blowing around this time of year. Tried Claritin, Benadryl, even prednisone for swelling. I washed them, ice packed them, and used every over the counter cream I could think of - nothing got rid of it. After 10 days of suffering they were worse than ever so red and swollen I could barely see, and the itching was unbelievable! I went to the Dr, (urgent care) and he prescribed Tobradex. OMG! It's four days later and they're almost better. The itching has stopped the swelling is gone and the redness has almost subsided. The Dr. said I had allergies that caused an infection. Tobradex is a very effective antibiotic/steriod that works against staph, strep and other godawful bacteria. It costs a fortune but the relief is worth every penny. I'm a vet tech and the better vets I've worked for know to use it on animals too. If all else fails you, I strongly recommend you talking to your Dr about it. Hope this helps.
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28 yr old female here.  seems like i am in the same boat as so many of you.  i woke up a few weeks ago with a really swollen, itchy, red lower eyelid.  i moved 3 months ago from AZ to Portland, Oregon (where, as many of you probably know) there is a LOT less sun, thus, less Vit D.  

the swelling in my left lower eyelid went down after about 4 days and then 3 days ago i woke up with BOTH eyelids in the same exact condition.  the bottom of my left and the top on the right eye.  i have been reading the above posts and i DO have a large dog, so the mites seem like a real problem, and i have been taking grapefruit seed extract, which is like an anti-parasitic something-or-other.  and, of course, the changing of sheets and pillowcases..  my dog and i have BOTH got swollen eyes now, it seems like everything i do, from benedryl to vitamins to grapefruitseed extract make everything WORSE (for both myself and my poor pooch)

like so many other women on this site i have that scaly, dry under-eye wrinkling and it's SO depressing.  i am only 28 and i'm in sales, so i can't walk around looking like quasimoto without the charming hump.

please, please, please someone help me!  has anyone else tried something that has worked FAST??  i have a date on friday and am so upset that i will have to cancel unless i can find a quick cure.

thank you all in advance - any help is appreciated!

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I had this problem for the last three years. My family doctor tried everything and finally I went to a great dermatologist at a large teaching hospital. He prescribed Protopic ointment and an oral antibiotic. He said that it was eczema and because of rubbing it became infected. It took about two months to clear  and I have used the ointment as soon as it starts getting red and after two days it seems to clear up.
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I can't believe how many posts there are on this!  I started having eye issues about 5 months ago.  I live in Los Angeles.  I thought my irritation was a result of using topical Vitamin A on my skin and that it got too close to my eyes and irritated them- perhaps that what facilitated the ultimate reaction?  I stopped using the cream and it cleared up, but for the past 3 months, every week or so, I will wake up with hugely puffy, slightly red irritated eyes.  The red skin will then get all dry and flakey and the inner corners of my eyes will have horrible wrinkle lines.  I'm an actress so it is worrisome that I sometimes have to go to auditions with this condition.  Last week i bought some gentle detergent to re-wash my sheets in and I didn't have any morning puffiness but yesterday and today my eyes have gotten worse.  I didn't wear any makeup yesterday  but I did eat dark chocolate both days in the evening.  My research shows that it is very unlikely to be allergic to the cacao bean as it is usually the milk or nuts that one is allergic too but I'm going to test out my theory as I did just start eating dark chocolate in the past 5 months.  I will also try this Neem Oil and Dr. H eye baum.  If things don't improve I will look at changing my pillow to a hypo-allergenic one.  Please keep posting your updates as this is obviously a condition that is not properly diagnosed!  
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My daughter has this problem....Dr. gave her otc aquaphor by Eucurin (OTC) we also found at the local pharmacy a eye wipe for this (OTC) she tried it and it has helped TONS!  Her "doc in the box" was clueless except maybe for "dry eye lids" diagnosis.  ya think....anywho...Thanks for all the post!  This is REALLY scary on the eyelids! and hers is spreading under her eyes!....red/purple, dry, itchy/scaly, swollen, watering some and sand paper feeling inside, muscle spasms...

Thanks for all your help!  And to the post about the demodex...thanks tons!  This has been going on for about 1 -2 weeks now and she just bought a dwarf rabbit 4 weeks ago that stays in her room close to her bed!

It's bad when something like this or getting sick happens to you, but when it's your child.....She's 17 and my world....thanks SO much for all ya'll help!  :0)
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As you may have read in my earlier posts, I went to who knows how many doctors who couldn't figure out why my eyelids were swollen.  A friend mentioned to me that it could be an allergy to propylene glycol (she knew someone who had a similar reaction), so I mentioned it to the doctors and they agreed that it was probably the case and that I should avoid it.  Well, I did and the swelling eventually went away until a few days ago.  

I have moved to South Korea since my last post and for some reason my left eyelid was swollen when I woke up a few days ago.  I immediately thought that the cream the dermatologist gave me for some breakouts a couple days before had contained propylene glycol (even though I told her I couldn't use anything with it listed in the ingredients), so I went back to the derm that next day.  She took one look at it and said, "Oh, it's just contact dermatitis.  Put lotion on before applying the benzoyl peroxide cream and it'll go away.  The acne cream is too drying, so if you add moisture first it'll be okay."  WHAT!?  I've been spending so much money trying to avoid something that I'm not even allergic to and this whole time it was just from dry eyelid skin!?!?  Ridiculous!  
Well, I used some eye steroids for a couple nights to get the swelling down, but after that I've been following her instructions and so far so good...sure glad I moved to South Korea:)...may have never known otherwise.  Hope this helps someone.  
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i used to complain of dry, itchy, scaly, flakey skin around my nose and mouth. no creams, lotions or medications helped.  a friend told me she used to have the same symptoms around her EYES, and a dermatologist recommended she stop using toothpaste with floride as many women are allergic.  she changed toothpastes and her condition greatly improved.  i tried this as well, and to my surprise, it helped.  i think i was being over exposed to floride in my toothpaste, washing water, and drinking water.  if i washed my face in bottled water, this also helped...  it took about two days to see some improvement and 2 weeks to see a lot of improvement.   give it a try and see if this might help you as well.  
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This is wonderful to find fellow sufferers.  I think my trigger may be wearing contacts.  I have only suffered since 7/08 but the only time it has cleared completely (no redness, scaliness, itching OR wrinkles) was after a Pred Pak and the day after I had vomitting and diarrhea (even still had the contact in from the night before and it was perfect).  Seemed my system had been cleansed of the offending agent.  Other than that Shea Butter body stick by Heath & Henry Natural Body Care is keeping the leftover scaly, leathery skin under control and helping with the wrinkles. I put it on morning and night. I basically am not wearing the contacts now.
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I had bleph for 9 months.  It was miserable.  I tried everything under the sun.  Finally I am free of this mess, but most of you won't like the solution.  So this is only for those who are desperate.

The answer is diet.  I have gone vegan (NO dairy, NO animal).  The final piece to the solution is also NO coffee, NO wine.  A cocktail now and then doesn't seem to bother.  I think our bodies are out of line ph-wise, too much acid.  

This change was not fun for me, but I cannot tell you the relief that comes from NO MORE BLEPH!  You have to be patient; the body may take some time to re-balance itself.
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I have the same symptoms, but the odd thing is that I work in a hospital and there are at least 6 others that I know of that have been suffering from this for the past 4-5 months.  Some of them have patient contact and others do not.  Most of them work night shift.  My eye lids are unbearably itchy and it has spread to my forehead and face.  I have very little visible rash in those areas but my chest has now started in with a bad raised red rash. My eyes and face get better on my days off.  Could it be something environmental?
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I have also found this thread to be very supportive as my eyes have bothered me on and off for a couple months now.  I believe in large part my problem is related to stress, long hours on the computer, and lack of sun.  I am going to investigate further.  I also am tired of looking like hell and having people do double takes when they see me.  I do work in a busy hospital and do not have direct patient contact but of course contagious things are always an issue.  I think the sheer number of men who have reported this problem is heartening as I think it's tempting to blame it on make up when it can easily be many other things.  
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I really was shocked when I read all the people that suffer this same thing.  It is awful and it is worse that a dermatologist can just say contact dermatitis or Bleph...
I have been having this for several months on and off.  I was away in
Africa and suffered nothing and now back 4 days, I had a flare up.  I read some of the above posts and went to Wholefoods.  I bought Thera Neem Leaf and oil cream...dabbed on lids and the burning stopped within an hour...This morning I still have some swelling but the reddness and burning are gone.  I don't know if it coincidence or if it worked but I am happy.  
I have to wait for an allergist in Feb to be tested for Formaldehyde (sp), hair dye and I am looking into preservatives as well and will see what happens..
I hope this can help just one person.
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I pleasantly surprised that I am hearing of a new (to me) method that seems to be working for people-Neem oil. I've never heard of this and am anxious to try it out. I've had bleph for as long as I can remember and I am 25. I too have been told the same old things by my eye doctors-baby shampoo, hot compresses,etc. I'll get a break once in a while of a few days where the compresses seem to work but then its right back to my red eyelids. I dont get itciness but my eyelids are red and my eyes are easily sensitive to light.

I am going to try the neem oil suggestion that everyone seems to reccommend and see what happens. At this point I am convinced that bleph is not a disease that can be blanketly diagnosed and perscribed-seems like it has to do with personal chemicals in the body or something. So the search is on for what works for me!

One question though, does this neem oil have any side effects-long or short? If it wirks I want to keep using it only if its not going to effect my eyes in another way, down the road.
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I just bought Neem Oil and Tree Oil ointment....have all the symptoms described above for over 8 years...no doctor or treatment has helped.  Question:  how do you keep the Neem Oil from going into your eyes...it stings and hopefully isn't causing any other problem or side effect.
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Hi jazzie3,

Have you used this stuff long enough to see an improvment? Or not tried it as of yet?
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I picked some neem up today and am trying it out-so far so good. Looks like the redness is going down.

Heres a link that will help you find stores in your area that sell the stuff.

http://www.organixsouth.com/stores.html

Hope this helps
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Started using Neem and Tea Oil (health food store provides) yesterday and crossing my fingers.  Already the swelling seems to be going down and redness lightening up.  Somehow my eyes just look better and not itchy.  Will keep everyone posted on progress.  
Thanks for asking.
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I am another sufferer of the itchy, flaky eyelid issue. Just developed this a month ago. YUK! Treated it with Neomycin Dexamethazone oint and seemed better. Then I used Aquaphor around the eyes for a couple of weeks and now the itching/redness is back. I will try the Dr H balm and Neem. I look like an "old lady" . It feels like my skin in the corners of my eyes will tear when I open my eyes really wide.
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I tried the need and it ended up making my eyes more uncomfortable after a little while. How long do you use it before it really seems to work?

I am starting to this I have developed an immunity to traditional treatment methods. Is this possible? Also, are there other diseases/symptoms that mimmick blepharitis but are not actually this disease?
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On 3rd day of Neem/Tea Oil.  Neem really stings my eyes.  I put it on with a q tip now and that seems to help, with kleenex under my top eyelashes.  The Tea Oil seems to work a little better than Neem (but it really stinks worse than Neem).  Back to scratching the dry skin off my eyelids in large patches, which leaves the eyelid red after the dry skin's removed.  Swelling down somewhat.  Going to continue with the twice a day treatment.  Will keep all informed.  How are you doing?  I was diagnosed by an eye physician with bleph but don't believe it.  I think it's a catchall phrase when they don't know what they're looking at.  Anyway, that was 3-4 years ago and the treatment didn't work at all....sooooooo....I'm grateful for any and all recommendations.  Seems like a losing battle after reading all these posts.  Has anyone in the 1st few months of the post found anything that helps, improves, or heals??
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No luck with the cream. Seemed to make my eyes itchy and more uncomfortable. Whats weird is that my symptoms differ somewhat from most of the posts I've seen in the way that they do not normally itch. My issue is the red eyelids and eye strain/dryness. Drops dont seem to help though.

AHHHHHHHHH!!! I think I am going crazy sometimes trying to figure this out. I was actually doing some searching the other day for surgery that would take care of this once and for all. However, I didnt find anything specific to blepharitis. There was a procedure called blephroplasty, but thats to help remove sagging skin from the eyelids. I dont think I have enough skin on my eyes to get rid of any.......

I think I am going to just try rinsing my eyes with warm water at night and maybe the baby shampoo thing again. Trying not to lose hope but its getting harder and harder.

It just boggles my mind that so many people are diagnosed with the same thing but no one seems to get any better after the prescribed treatment. WTF! Should we start a petition to get the doctors attention and to make them realize that their BS diagnoses and treatment suggestions arent working........sorry, had to vent.

As always, keep us posted on new findings and results.
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Hi everyone!!
Just stopped by to read posts on everyone progress/lack of progress.

Jazzie3 Tree tea is very potent!!  Honestly, I wouldn’t put that stuff anywhere near my eyes without diluting it.  The fumes alone will irritate your eyes.  I have read that people do get relief using it though.

I no longer use neem straight either.  I only use Dr H balm which contains neem.  I always have at least 2 pots available and dab it on frequently when I get that "feeling" and I know you all know what I mean.  You can feel the swelling start to begin.

My routine is still what I posted in October except that I’ve added grapeseed oil.  Before leaving the shower I slather grapeseed oil on my entire face & eyes and then give a quick rinse to remove the excess.  Then I follow up with what I posted.  This is working very nicely for me.

I have heard that people have had different success with different things.  Since I’m pretty sure that this is an allergy related problem it’s very hard to find an individual fix.  Also, everyone’s bodies are different and different factors along with different environments contribute to the difficulty in finding a solution. Daunting!

Some of you may need a prescription to get it under control (steroids) before finding an alternative solution.  Blephamide cream did the trick for me but it was only masking the problem and causing thinning of my eyelid skin.  I was like a junkie. If I misplaced the tube I went into a frenzy!  It was hard to get too.  Many of my local drugstores didn’t have it stocked and I had to wait to refill it and it’s a TINY tube.

One more thing, I have noticed flare-ups if I’ve eaten foods that contain MSG.  Not all foods but  in my case,  eating a bunch of Wise Honey BBQ chips (lots of MSG) will cause an almost instantaneous reaction.  I shouldn’t be eating them anyway!  :D

Keep the faith!


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Hi. I am glad to say I've been having some success keeping this problem under control. I've been suffering the same red, itchy, dry skin on my upper eyelids for about 9 months - think it may have been an allergic reaction to an eyeshadow. I stopped using eye make-up immediately but the problem persisted. After a couple of months I turned to steroid cream to make life bearable, but eventually realised that I would have to find an alternative. I still use foundation cream, blusher and lipstick on my face as they don't seem to make any difference. About 6 weeks ago I stopped using my face cleansers and moisturisers (Nivea) and began using only a small amount of Simple Soap with warm water to remove my makeup, and some chemical free moisturiser by Barefoot Botanicals. It immediately made a difference. I am also very strict about not touching my eyelids as this seems to make them worse. If they do start to flare up again I use a very small amount of Sudocream - a great cream that is used to treat all kinds of skin complaints from nappy rash to eczema. Since I started my new regime about 6 weeks ago I have not had to use the steroid cream at all, and although the problem is not gone it is about 90% better. Hope this helps someone. Let me know if it does.
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Hi...sorry...but what was your routine in October?  Can't find the post.

"My routine is still what I posted in October except that I’ve added grapeseed oil.  Before leaving the shower I slather grapeseed oil on my entire face & eyes and then give a quick rinse to remove the excess.  Then I follow up with what I posted.  This is working very nicely for me."
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REPOST
Hello again!

Just checking back in to report my progress and my tips.

My condition as greatly improved ( not totally gone) and here's what I'm doing and my recommendations.

Wash with mild soap only! or no soap if you do not wear makeup.  I use L'Occitane Honey bee bars.  Expensive but lasts 10x longer than any other bar soap so I think it actually costs less.

Avoid hot water and warm compresses.  The heat only draws the histamine (itch) to the surface and the constant water is will dehydrate the skin.

After washing DO NOT WAIT until your lids have completely dried before using anything on them!  You want to get them protected and seal in any moisture pronto!
After washing or shower I PAT my skin with a towel and immediatly pat on Lubriderm Intense Skin Repair Body Lotion with Itch Relief****** on my eye area. I wait one minute then seal it in with Dr Hauschka Eye Balm.  I PAT it on gently and them smooth it along both upper & lower lash lines.

I use OTC drops ( Visine Allergy) once or twice a day as my eyes are constantly red and gritty and this seems to help.  DO NOT ever let any eye drops touch the skin around your eyes!  It will burn the lids and contribute to the problem.  Be sure to have a barrier of protection on your lids before using drops and then hold a soft tissue in the corner to absorb any run off.  

Carry a pot of Dr. H eye balm with you and reapply whenever your eye start to tear outside.  Your tears are contributing to your condition!!!  Blot tear away with a soft tissue.  DO NOT RUB!

DO NOT EVER RUB YOUR EYES!  I know how hard it is.  Painful actually but every time you rub your eyes you cause little fissures in the skin that is really contributing to the problem.

Change you pillow cases frequently and vacuum your bed!  DO NOT USE DRYER SHEETS!

Neem oils really helped me get out of my really bad point BUT it is very strong and COULD acerbate your condition.  Dr. H eye balm contains some neem oil and along with the other emollients it works very well. Dr H Balm is very expensive but IMO, worth every penny! (look for it on ebay cheaper)

My condition was minimal during the Summer months and I spend a great deal of time outdoors in the sun.  I suspect that sunlight helps the over all problem.

**** If the skin around your eyes is severely inflamed this may BURN.  If so wash it off immediatly and just use the eye balm until your skin improves.

I hope this helps!  This is the very best my eyes have been in a long time.  No steroids (masking the problem) no more doctors giving me the bums rush.

I feel for each and every one of you because I know how painful and debilitating this condition is not to mention age accelerating facially and depressing.
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I have had one red, dry and slightly itchy eyelid for 5 months--I was pretty sure
that it was not an allergy and claritin wasn't helping. I had stopped using all eye products
for a few weeks and that didn't help either.
I had tried everything with no good results.  I just read that it is sometimes is caused by
seborrheic dermatitis which you can get in other spots too. It is worth trying
Nizoral and T/sal shampoo and carefully applying to lid and rinsing.  It may sting
at first but after a few days -- my lids are much better!  You can also try to get a prescription
for Diflucan that kills the yeast from the inside rather than treating from the outside.
Good Luck.
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Hi..I started having this problem about six months ago and cured it.
At first I thought it might be the makeup I was wearing but quickly realized that wasn't the problem and then suspected it might be some other allergy. I went to see a naturopath who diagnosed it as an eczema outbreak on my eyes. Turns out I have a wheat allergy and this is a classic symptom. I was given some naturopathic remedies and had to cut out all traces of wheat from my diet.
For those of you who are still having this problem I would suggest looking at your diet and get tested for food allergies. Many people are allergic to wheat, which is so prevalent in the north american diet, and have no idea. It might be the solution.
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A clerk in a health food store also mentioned this possibility (of wheat in diet) to me.  It seems simply impossible to remove all wheat from my diet.  I think it's in mostly everything I eat except vegetables/fruit/meat.  I know it's been said there are specialty stores but making my own pasta and bread isn't going to work for me.  I really do think this problem is allergy related as I have had reactions in other ways, but not food.  I was tested once for food and nothing showed up;  could have changed since.  All these home remedies are NOT working and the only thing that does is temporary (steroidal creams).  Doctors just prescribe this and that's the end of it.  Even though it goes on for years, doctors seem to convey the message"  don't tell me about it and I won't have to deal with it".  And then pharmasists complain that people are diagnosing themselves and telling doctors what's wrong with them.  No wonder we have to go to the internet.
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Hi,

I read many of your comments about 5 months ago when I stated to get red itchy eyelids. I took some advise from this forum - namely Neem oil creams, which I think definately helped, although it took about one month for it to go that time. Since then I have only used Neem creams on my face and my eyes were ok. Then about 10 days ago, as I had run out of my Neem cream I used some Body Shop Vit. E cream that I had in the cupboard. A day later my eyes were swollen and red. This time I decided I couldn't wait a month for it to go, so I went to a dermatologist in Berlin where I live. He prescribed me 'Novaritis Ultracortenol Eyecream' - within the day the swelling was gone and by the second day it had stopped itching. He also prescribed 'Bayer Bepanthen Eyecream' to make the skin soft again. Within 5 days my eyelids were perfect, and even the darkish colour, that had never really gone since the last episode, disappeared. The first time I got this I was worried about using cortizone, but as there is only a tiny amount in this cream and because it worked so well (I only used it for one day - 3 times) I think it's ok; I don't think such a small amount could cause damage to the eyelids (as some people believe); mine are absolutely fine now. The dermatologist told me that although it may be fine to put any creams on the rest of my face, I should be very careful what I put on my eyes. Since then I have only used Neem cream (during the day) and the Bepanthen cream at night (it's quite greasy) and they've been fine. I also highly recommend this website for Neem products - really good stuff for acceptable prices (UK & Europe only) https://neemgenie.hostasaurus.com/index.htm
I hope this helps some of you - I know how horrible it is waking up everyday to swollen, itchy eyes. Good luck!
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I've just come back from the doctor.  About a 1 1/2 weeks ago, out of the blue, my eyelids became swollen, red and itchy, with flaky patches on certain parts.  It became so I couldn't wear my contacts.  
After reading up on it all, I was convinced I had Blepharitis.  It seems I have a form of that, which is Seborreah of the eyelid.  It's basically the same thing, except Blepharitis tends to affect the lash line, losing your eyelashes, whereas the area affected on me were further up the eyelid, more towards the crease.  It's caused by a yeast type bacteria.
Anyway, my doctor said to apply cortisone cream on the affected areas 3 times a day to controll the itching, and to wash the area with baby shampoo.
As for the swelling, I had applied warm compresses last night, as I had read that online, and the redness and swelling have gone down.  
I hope this was helpful!
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Hi everyone,
After reading all your comments back in Nov 2008 and trying out some of your product recommendations, I had no luck. What had started out as an occasional dry left eyelid years ago, had become 2 red, itchy, swollen eyelids for a couple of months in the Fall, and I was desperate.  I replaced everything topical - foundation (I never used any other makeup anyway), soaps, toothpaste, dish soap, laundry soap, shampoo and rinse – everything.  No luck.  I was finally able to see my dermatologist, and because of recommendations on this site and another, I was able to give her some names of ointments that worked for others.  She gave me Desonide, and by the following day the swelling and redness was gone, and the next day the itching stopped.   It’s been about 6 weeks, and I’m fine.  I stopped using it after 3 days and haven't needed it since.  

She wants me to do a patch test to see what I’m allergic to, but it’s tough to find a time when it’s OK to go without a shower for a week.

Thanks to everyone for posting.

Anita
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Hey, I don't think the problem is as complicated as you may think.  Let's use a little reverse "psychology" in our "dermatology".  

Most people have sensitive skin and a lot of us have suffered from acne at some point or another in our lives thus developing an intense aversion to oil-containing moisturizers.  Now, as we age, we are using products to treat our wrinkles that contain Vitamin-A derivatives such as retinol palmitate, for example.  This chemical substance is found in virtually all anti-aging/anti-wrinkle products found in OTC moisturizers we buy today.  Anyone use Retin-A and peel like crazy? turn red like crazy? crack like crazy?  
I used it as a teen and had a horrific experience, but now at the age of 30 I'm reaching for these products to eliminate wrinkles.  

The eyelids are the thinnest skin on our bodies and also one of the most sensitive.  Sometimes, when we slather on our ani-aging wrinkle lotions that well tolerated by other regions, such as the cheeks and chin, we get over zealous and introduce them to the sensitive eye region.  In addition, as we wash our faces (another can of worms) we can wash these chemicals over our lids.  

If you read the above threads you will notice that individuals who are using an "oil" seem to improve their condition.  Just like the lips, the eyelids NEED oil in order to be happy.  In addition, have any of you had Botox lately?  As the skin lifts it will also stretch.  Imagine stretching your dry lips...they will crack, right?  The same thing happens with your eyelids.  I don't have a product to reccommend per se, but perhaps it would be worthwhile to research eyecreams that contain lipid moisturizers.  I used to avoid oil like the plague as a youth, but now that I'm past that stage in life I've realized that a little oil in my moisturizer doesn't cause breakouts like the old days and is very helpful in treating this "scaly, swollen, red, upper/inner eyelid" disorder.  Also, during this healing phase the key is to leave the eye area alone.  Don't use eyeshadow/mascara as the rubbing action to put on/take off just perpetuates the irritation.  If you have to: try to dab, don't stroke.

Good luck.
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I too am SUFFERING!!!  For the past 3 weeks I wake up with puffy, red eyelide that turn into dry, flaky, and itchy eyelids throughout the day.  While reading this forum has given me some relief in knowing that others are also having the same issues, I just wish we could figure it out.  At first I thought it was my contacts but it doesn't make sense that I would wake up with swolllen eyelids after a night of not wearing them  I also was thinking it could be Benzoyl Peroxide as I have acne-prone skin and use various products containing the ingredient but I haven't eliminated it from my regimend for a long enough period of time to be sure.  I also was thinking it could be the frozen dinners I started eating on a daily basis due to me starting a second job.  The dinners don't have preservatives but there could be a common chemical in all of them that I am allergic too.  I also was thinking it could be some sort of skin condition as I have been having various skin irritation issues since June 2008.  I am going to list the the things I think it could be and if anyone has these in common perhaps it's the problem with us all.

Proactive and other Benzoyl Peroxide containing ingredients
Lean Cuisine frozen entree's
Dove shampoo and conditioner
South Beach Living cereal bars
Bath and Body lotion & antibacterial soap

any ideas???

I just don't know what to do anymore.
I don't want to waste money on a ton of doctor visits and prescriptions that don't work as I have already spent some money on eyedrops which did nothing.
I want to rip my eyes out!!!!  
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I have had this complaint for over 3 years now. It has never gone away but flares up regularly. I have had a really bad case since before Christmas and  tried everything, I have stopped wearing makeup, taken my false nails off cut right down on wheat and dairy...and the problem still persists. The eyes are really swollen and all crepe. Black rings around the eyes that will not go away. My doctor this week tried accupunture which seemed to help a little. 3 days later it is terrible again, I am going for another accupuncture session on Monday but couldnt get there before. Has anyone had success with accupuncture.? I also wondered if any one is a hairdresser or has worked with a lot of chemicals . I have been hairdressing for 50years and my natruapath thinks it could have something to do with it. I too have spent a fortune on all creams and NOTHING works,I get to screaming point, it is sooo frustrating.
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I first started having itchy flaky eyelids, (mostly near the lashline) and swollenand puffy on both teh top lashline and at bottom of my eye...it gave me deep creases, like many of you said.  I looked like I was ten years older than I am (I am 27).  I started noticing this flared up after I wore moderate makeup..and i use bare minerals! buit just because something is pure and a mineral doesnt mean I couldn't be allergic to it.  I think everyone on here may have different causes - wether its a food allergy/makeup allergy whatever...BUT- I have been dealing with these symptoms for about six months now.  Extremely frustrating, because i can not wear makeup most of the time, because the inflamation (inflammation) gets so raw, it feels like im brushing my eyelids with a metal brush if i try to apply makeup, not to mention mascara would really burn.   So ive been lookin online for information in this, i figured a dr would only prescribe me a steroid topical and my body still wouldnt be "healing" but just masking the symptoms with steroids...ANd THANK YOU to everyone who posted...

I FOUND SOMETHING THAT WORKS!!!!!!

ITaking nearly everones experiences along with my feelings on nutritional healing and homeopathic health, I went to this health store, and the very knowledgable woman guided me to RUE FENNEL drops....RUE FENNEL is a liquid herbal extract, vegetarian and organic- what you do is you put a few drops in a small shot glass of water, and make an eye wash-  (they sell eye wash cups, but a shot glass works fine).  You put your eye over the shot glass and make as good as a suction as you can, and just sorta blink in the water and rue fennel solution...i tilt teh water so it all splashes up on my eye, and do so for about thirty seconds...each eye...

Apparently, RUE FENNEL is good for ANY eye ailment...she said she swore by it, and now I do too..

The bottle cost $12 and is one fluid ounce, all you ned to use is about three drops when you first start using it, but it says you can work up to 15 drops...but that u should start off slow.

I did the washy right before bed, and I am not lying, immediately after I did the wash, i saw redness and puffiness was alleviated from my eye.  I woke up thsi morning, all that was left was some flaky dry skin, which i will need to use some mosturizing eye cream on, - i think i will use oil of olay- or something...

I read about many people using castor oil, and vaseline?!  I strongly suggest you dont use those as they will block up your tear ducts!

also someone commented about vitamin d supplements- Vitamin d is not a vitamin that is hard to get- our bodies do not need such large amounts that we need to take a supplement of it- u can usually spend about thirty minutes in teh sun to get enough, or just by drinking milk you can get enough.  Of course I understand each person may have other variables involved in their personal health (cant go outside, dont drink milk) but still i thought i should point out vitamin d is not a hard to attain vitamin naturally.)

One last suggestion -
The book "Prescription for Nutritional Healing" by Phyllis Balch

Okay guys- seriouosly try the RUE FENNEL herb extract drops- the brand i used is called Herb Pharm

GOOD LUCK, and im sooo glad i found this forum cause it led me to my own success, and hopefully yours
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ALSO- it is true that sodium laurel sulfates are chemicals and are not ideal for our skin, and to anyone who has completely or even partially ridd of them in their daily life- GOOD JOB, that must have been expensive.  But to actually rid yourself of ALL CHEMICALS would be an arduos task.  I am NOT tryin to diuuade anyone in their attempts at doing so if they have the will, but what i am saying, is that there is a way to live in better balance, and not be so affected by all the harsh products we use.  

I am a single mother and I was shocked to hear about the numbing agents they put in our shampoos and such...I am a bit skeptical as to what degree of :numbing agent" is used...Nonetheless, being a single mom and in a broken economy, i pick battles wisely- and i think its smart to give my baby better bath and pampering products  such as WELEDA...weleda is a very smart and may i add expensive line of lotions and bath stuff, for both adults and baby...But

Im just sayin, realize that chemicals and additives are everywhere- in our food, in our water!  (flouride is not healthy for us- it actually is foudn in many sedatives...) flouride is pumped in many water systems...

our bodies react to a culmination of things annd react to varying degrees...so it could very well drive a person insane, trying to figure out the one cause of why we are having certain sypmtoms, and it may well be one particular thing that put our immunity over the edge or one thing that served as a catalyst in putting our bodies through such havoc-

Its just important to realize our surroundings and what goes into our bodies all the time, but not become over paranoid...

Microwaved food- should be limited, microwaves actually kill the nutritional value of our foods - try to not use microwaves

Anything that goes ON your body, Is important, just as what goes in your body...

Cell phones are better used on speaker phone some of the time...

Dry cleaned clothes are HUGELY toxic, and should be aired out for at least a day outside of the plastic wrap, and preferably outside your house! you wouldnt want all those toxic chemicals just airing out into your house...I personally dont dry clean at all- ITS ALL CHEMICALS - and your skin absorbs them!

a good cheap hand soap is Dr bronners lavender and tea tree soap.  I mix it with water and put it in a hand pump- it lasts forever and is very cheap that way...

And one last thing, to all those contact wearers- Ugh i have been there- I had lasik done, and would never go back to glasses or contacts.... i bet these symptoms must make it impossible to wear your contacts.  I would HIGHLY suggest anyone wearing contacts to do an eye wash- ...even more so i would suggest the RUE FENNEL eye wash...

I have had many eye problems, corneal abrasions, and even traumatic iritis- which was some of the worst pain ever- like knives slicing my eyeballs- and it lasted FOREVER - i got it from dry contacts scratching my eyeball really bad...

RUE FENNEL LIQUID HERBAL EXTRACT DROPS   !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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Same damned irritating condition here.  I am female, 46.  The most recent thing I used upon first noticing was Neutrogena Eye Make-Up Remover which seemed to irritate just below my lower lashes and cause redness.  Stopped using it, went back to what I'd always used w/o problems & it seemed to clear up FOR A FEW DAYS anyway.  It's back...

Two weeks and my upper & lower eye area look like hell.  Itchiness, redness, dryness, scaly, & tightness.

Thinking, I've been on WW since Sept. & my eating habits have changed.  I'm eating LOTS of those granola type bars, especially Kashi & South Beach.  Eating yougurt too and as recent as my 'outbreak' started adding fresh blueberries which were new to my diet.  I eliminated them but that hasn't seemed to do anything.  One day it's worse, another day it seems a little better.  I'm wondering if it's something in the foods I'm eating.  

I'm very discouraged about seeing a dr. when I feel like I need to be trying some eliminations for myself so I'm doing just that.  I'm so aggravated and surprised at reading everyone else who is experiencing similar problems here.  

I don't have a remedy, I just hope all of our input helps us draw individual conclusions as to what is causing our particular outbreaks.  *****!  And I DON'T want WRINKLES even if I am 46!!!!

Keep posting thoughts & ideas, I think we can each take something from what everyone has to share.

The dr. on this board is awful quiet!  I guess he doesn't have specific answers either.

Good luck to all of us looking for answers to solve this 'irritating' problem!  It HAS to have a cause for each one of us and I know some causes will vary, just wish we knew what ours were!


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Thank you all for your posts. Now I don't feel like such a freak. I am a 61 year old female. My problem started back in 1985 with a small red spot just under my right eyebrow that would come and go. By 1990 my eyes were very red, flaky, itchy and almost swollen shut just during the winter (really embarrassing when meeting people around the holidays). Since then the problem has expanded to all year round. I've been to 10-12 doctors (I've lost count): allergists, general practitioners, and dermatologists. They all have the same response when I ask what it is: "I don't know."  I've been on 12 different antihistamines, corticosteroid and hydrocortisone eye creams, etc. I've even tried neem oil but it makes my eyes flare up even worse on the second day of use.  I have done so much research on this I could write a book.

I am convinced that there is one common thing we all share that is causing this.  Let me ask all of you this. Have you recently had or have a history of a lot of antibiotic use? Do you eat a lot of sugary foods and carbohydrates?

My research has brought me to the possibility of a candida overgrowth.  Many doctors deny that this exists because candida lives harmlessly in all our bodies. Antibiotics destroy the good bacteria in the body and candida multiplies. Although antibiotics are considered most responsible, birth control pills, antacids, and ingesting a lot of sugary foods and carbohydrates also contribute.

There is a whole host of symptoms associated with a candida overgrowth: rashes, hives, acne, and scaly skin, sinus congestion, post nasal drip, coughing, asthma, depression, anxiety and irritability, chronic diarrhea, constipation, heartburn, eye or ear irritation, memory loss, severe mood swings, recurrent fungal infections (such as "jock itch", athlete's foot, ringworm) or vaginal/urinary infections.  For more interesting stuff, do a Google search on candida overgrowth.

I am currently:
1) eating 8 oz. of (Horizon brand) fat free plain yogurt daily (stay away from sugary yogurt),
2) taking Solaray brand Yeast-Cleanse containing Caprylic Acid, Pau D'Arco, Grapefruit seed extract, Garlic, Licorice, and Tea Tree Oil ( 3 in the a.m. and 3 in the p.m.)
3) taking one probiotic pill (Solaray Multidophilus Plus) containing 4 billion Lactobacilli acidophilus (L. acidophilus) and Bifidobacterium bifidum (B. bifidum),
4) trying to eat at least 2 raw cloves of garlic a day, and
5) staying away from as much sugar and carbohydrates as possible

Believe it or not, it's working!  After 24 years, I think I've found an answer. I have been on this regimen for one week now and the redness around my eyes is beginning to lighten, and I'm feeling physically and mentally better.  I'm not expecting any overnight cures, especially since I've had this for so long, but there is a bit of light at the end of the tunnel.
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Has anyone here been to see an allergist or dermatologist???  I'm trying to figure out my next step.  

Can anyone post an update on your situation???  Has anyone going way back on these posts found relief??  If so, PLEASE share your story especially if you've found out the cause of your problem through a doctor, allergist or dermatologist!
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I have had the condition for about 25 years.  The initial flair ups were the worst.  I had felt like there was a centipede shaped germ on my eyelids and maybe an exacto knife run along the edge would clean it out.  The flair up can happen at any time.  I have been to the general practitioner, allergist, dermatologist,  ophthalmologist and talked with pharmacists.  They all say they have seen this before but none of their treatments have worked.  All that brought me to this blog.  I can only say it is a tough situation. The wax in make-up seems to make it feel better by at least coating it. Neem Oil was down right nasty smelling -- rotting onions maybe???? -- and then I couldn't sleep at night for the obnoxious odor and washed it off.  I am wondering why no one has found a treatment for this as it seems common enough.
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hey, i wrote a few das ago, proclaiming the wonders of Rue Fennel herbal drops, and i am back on to say, they absolutely help...and also i have added jojoba oil as part of the regimen.  Jojoba oil completely soothes and seeps deep into the skin, it is an excellent oil for a situation liek this, i dont think it will clog the pores because it is so readily absorbed in the skin.  jojoba oil is excellent for psoriasos  and exzema (eczema)...all kinds of skin disorders....

I am 27 years old, and stubborn as hell, so once i first tried the rue fennel herbal liquid extract eye wash, and found it helped, so i wore makeup the next day, and have ever since.  I know that my makeup is the main cause of my flair ups, and if i cut out my sugars and carbohydrates and ate extremely cautious i may not have as heavy symptoms...BUT i am not going to live where i cant eat bread or chocolate,

and to answer katy 09 - its kind of crazy you said that because i had to take antibiotics in november, right around the time these symptoms started.. ANd i HATE antibiotics.  I havent taken them in five years prior to then.  But i had serious conditions that made it damn near imperative (or so my dr said) and i had to take antibiotics...I am all for teh idea that our body has these types of symptoms because there are "unbalances" in our systems...Unfortunately my lifestyle habits are full of sugar and carbs, but I try to make the carbs good ones- liek sprouted grain bread, and i just really like chocolate, just had three lindt truffles just now!  and its my lifestyle habits and diet have not changed for nearly all my life, soo i dont think its my diet, although could be somewhat related...but im definitely more believing teh antibiotics had something to do with this...

i think it makes sense, this is very much like a yeast infctn or jock itch in the eye- eew hope that wasn too personal!  but jeez makes a lot of sense.  I will up my yogurt intake, and not the sugary ones, ( but i will have to have whole milk yogurt still, im a sucker for that cream top)

In the meantime, i will keep my eye wash and jojoba oil routine, and try not to wear makeup...

please, somebody try these rue fennel drops and bear witness with me

-mama e*
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To mama_ej: what brand are those Rue Fennel drops and where can I find them? I know what you mean about trying to stay away from sugar. It's in almost every food. I really love chocolate too. I bought a chocolate cream pie for Valentine's Day and had a small piece. I had a flare up the next day. I've cut down on sweets but not cut them out, that's nearly impossible. Try having half as much as usual.  
To SummerLoverNan: I had a dermatologist tell me to put vaseline on my lids and ride it out. My eyes turned super red, itched intensely, and swelled almost shut for days. That was a nightmare.
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my girlfriend can't afford to go to the doctors. shes trying to get on
medi-cal but she won't know for a while if she gets it. anyway, she has swolen eyelids. they are always swolen. they don't really look red but maybe a little pinkish brownish color. but there realy wrinkled and swolen all the time. she say's they itch every couple months and swell up  at the same time. but i always see them swolen like that. she says it's not all the time but they look like that all the time to me. whats could it be and what could she do to fix it? she doesn't wear contacts or glasses but she does have vision problems. she can't see things far away well. please help. thanks.
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I havent read all the posts. They are too many. But could we just examine if the reason is a side effect of any medicatioon? This is the first question we should ask.
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I can't believe I finally found people with the same problem!  I have had this for a few years, off and on.  Generally it gets worse at night and I end up putting ice packs on to get the swelling down. I don't use soap anymore and that seemed to help for a while and then all of a sudden another attack.  My eyelids get so raw they peel.  I thought it was allergies and took Claritin.  I thought it was Roscea and the anitibiotics made me feel awful so I stopped.  The hydrocortisone is so heavy my eyelids feel like they have weights on them and it really did no good.  I can't figure out what the trigger could be.  I don't wear contacts. I'd like to find a home remedy or something over the counter that is easy to find and you don't have to search for on the internet or a specialty store.  Thanks in advance for your help (and company).
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I have the same problem and cant seem to get rid of it. I woke up one morning and my eyelids were swollen, it looked like they were drooping. Then the next day or so they became red started to itch and then peel. It last for a few days and then it seems to get better than i will wake up again and its back. It horrible i didnt change anything. I ahve putting vaseline on them to help with the dry patches. I just started some eye drops the doc gave me cause he thinks its allergies but i dont think he is right. Any advice would be greatly appreciated.
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I have been dealing with this same problem since August 2008.  I first went to my regular Dr. who prescribed Optivar drops as he felt it was allergies.  After it did not get better, he referred me to an Opthamologist.  He said to continue with the Optivar drops and also put Hydrocortizone cream on my lids 2-3 x per day and to quit scratching and rubbing my eyes (yeah, thanks!).  Anyway after that didn't help I went back to the same Dr. who still said it was allergies and said the irritation was basically my fault for rubbing my eyes.  He gave me some patches to wear at night.  After a couple months with no relief, I went to an Allergy Dr. who performed all of the standard allergy tests which showed what I already knew, I am allergic to cats.  I do not have a cat nor I am ever near one, but he at least acknowleged that he was puzzled!   Anyway, he decided to try some different drops called Elestat as well as a nasal spray, Veramyst for my allergies. He also prescribed a cream for the itching which was horrible.  It made my eyelids burn terribly!  So far after 5 days I am not any better.  

BTW, through all of this, I have tried taking Zyrtec, Claratin & Benadryl and nothing has helped.  I changed out my make up which didn't help either.  Washing with diluted baby shampoo only made my eyelids more dry.  

I am going to try some of the natural rememdies mentioned and will post my results.  Thanks to all for telling your stories.  My friends, family & Dr.'s don't seem to understand what this has done in my life.  I teach Group Fitness Classes and have had to get substitues because I look and feel horrible.  Plus, the sweat in my eyes is almost unbearable.  Very depressing.  I am 38 and have aged at least 10 years in my looks.  
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Thanks for all of your comments.  I had this only a few times over the past few  yrs and then all of a sudden, I am getting this every month.  I too wake up with swollen lids that get very red, itchy and then peel.  I tried the allergy meds, vasoline,  hydrocortisone cream (these made my eyelids feel like they had weights on them and really did not help).  I don't have a cat.  No one seems to be able to help us and I can't figure out why when so many have this.  I can't figure what the "triggers" are.  I have been taking showers at night and using Ponds to clean off my makeup (Johnson's does not take off makeup), then use the Johnsons to wash again.  After I dry, I use Cetaphil (I try to get creams with no petrolatum or heavy oils).  The outside corners of my eyes feel almost cut and if I tear up or cry, they really sting.  For the swelling, I have used ice and Advil.  What else is there to try?
Let us know what else you try.

Reddy2
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I posted on 14th Feb about my desperate situation. Having had the problem for years, but a chronic flare up since December... I have at last got a little bit of relief.. I have definately found that less is best. Stick to a very simple routine. I use Lid care for my eyes....baby shampoo was far  too harsh. NO serums gave any relief. But I have been having accupuncture for 3 weeks now and the doctor mixed up some glycerine 100%  with 10% cream which seems to give a little relief. I am back wearing contact lenses as the glasses actually caused more irritation. This is the best result in 3 years....long may it last. Hope this helps.
Jayney43
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I posted on 2/24 regarding this problem.  The very next day I went to my local nutrition store and purchased "Thera Neem Leaf & Oil Cream" made by Organix South (they did not carry Dr. H's cream).  Anyway, I have been using it both day and night since then and though it's only been 2 days, I truly think I found my cure!  I make sure I wash off my make up (I use Almay Oil Free makeup remover).  When my lids are still damp, I put a very small amount of the cream on my lids (make sure you DON'T get it in your eyes).  Almost immediately, the soreness, redness and irritation went away.  My eyes were still watering a bit, but by the end of the 2nd day, that was gone as well.  I have been wearing my makeup (All Almay Brand) for the past 2 days and my eyes feel GREAT!!!!!  I highly recommend finding the Neem oil cream.  The brand I found had a scent called Sweet Orange & Ylang and it does not smell bad at all.  Hope this information helps.  I will post again soon to let you know how I am doing.  But, this is the BEST my eyes have felt and looked since August!  
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Here in CA the weather has been so warm for such a long time with a little rain, everything has been growing like crazy.  I wonder if this is the reason my eyes are giving me more frequent problems.  Does anyone have an olive tree?  We have one that I trim about once a month (around the base) and wondered today if that might be the trigger.  It is about 30 yrs old so still have olives that grow.  Just a thought.

I was also wondering if the glare and direct sunlight might affect us.

Feel like Sherlock Holmes.  Where is Dr. Watson????

Reddy2
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I've read most of the comments but might have missed this.  Other than the reference to sneezing, rashes, and dry lips, has anyone suffered any other symptoms in conjunction with outbreaks?  I seem to get a bit feverish at the time and wondered if this really is related and if there might be other effects as well.  Also, has anyone seen evidence that this condition is contagious?  And, yes, would be nice to hear the doc check in - with this sounding like all but a national epidemic, have to think the med books are addressing it somehow.

RedEyefromLasVegas
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I cannot believe we all have this!  Mine started last year when I used a cream on my eyes.  Within a few hours my elelids and under eye area was bright read, itchy, burning  and sometimes felt like a needle poking the skin every once in a while. My actual eyeballs were white and unaffected.  I went to my family practitioner and she prescribed Tobradex ointment,  a steroid and antiobiotic which cleared it up in 5 days. I was elated.  Then in about a week to 10 days it came back on one eye area, I used the Tobradex and voila, it was gone in a matter of a few days. I changed all my makeup by the way and washed my hands till they felt raw, but I was taking no chances. Still  this senerio went on and every few months it would re-appear and I would use the Tobradex.  Now the doctor does not want to prescribe Tobradex anymore for me because it is an antibiotic and steroid, and she thinks my eyes will get addicted, and maybe so.  But now the team of doctors are telling me it is allergy to my cat.  I have religiously vacuumed daily, changed bed linens daily, dusted daily, and I really dont think it is an allergy to my cat.  But, I am willing to give him away to be free of this roller coaster!  I know I am not a doctor, but could this be a new disease no doctor's know about???Oh I pray not!  I am going to my opthomologist tomorrow to see what he thinks, I have no hopes after reading so many dead end stories from you all.  Someone somewhere has to have the answer.  I miss looking like my old self.  
I am not wearing makeup, and for the dry skin today I used Utter Balm, believe it or not it  soothed  the skin. They use it on chapped cow utters LOL!  Your can buy it at Tractor Supply in Texas.  It costs about five dollars, and comes in a green tin.  Rather odd but it also helped my husbands poison ivy/
I hope we find an answer soon to this ailment we all have.  
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Just checking back in......It's been 5 days since I began using the Neem Oil Cream and I have not had another flare up.  In fact, I've only used the cream 1 time per day in the past couple of days.  My friend even made the comment on how great my eyes looked.  She said I looked like myself again.  I make sure I take off my makeup every night and rinse my eyes with water.  I've been able to wear makeup!!!!  I am not sure what exactly the Neem Oil has to make this go away, but I don't care.  I seem to have found my cure.  I highly recommend trying it.  I delt with this for 6 months and am glad to be feeling better.

Pumpmom
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Although I am glad to know I am not the only one suffering from this I am sick to my stomach that there is no real cure for this.  I would like to think of myself as not an overly vain person and can not wear make up to look presentable but now with the itchy red eyelids I am so embarrassed to not wear make up.  And as we all know the make up only makes it worse.  I am very depressed about all of this.  I am encouraged yet at the same time extremely discouraged by the inconsistancies.  I will try the Neem's and pray for all of us.  Its just unbelievable to me that so many people suffer from this and no one can help us.  Please keep your comments coming.  
Oh by the way...before finding this forum I tried everything under the sun like you all and the one and only thing that gives me the most relief is Vagisil.  Strange as it sounds it takes away the itching and redness as long as it is on.  

Nebraska
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I hope everyone reads this.  My husband just went through a horrible few weeks of intolderable itching of his eyelids and eventually all the area around his eyes.  He was not sleeping or even able to rest due to this problem.  His doctor had no clue, the eye doctor had no clue, except to wash with baby shampoo and use otc eyedrops.  None of it helped. Not vasoline or any other oil soothed the itching or his skin.  He was so red and swollen, exhibited all the symptoms of everyone on this forum.  I finally sent him to our good old skin specialist here.  He gave him a RX for Desonide 0.05% cream.  He applies it four times a day.  He also prescribed Atarax, 25 MG tablets which he takes 1 four times a day.  He had relief within a few hours.  It has only been two days since he started this (he saw the doctor on Monday afternoon) and he is like a new person.  I don't know that this is medically appropriate for everyone and I don't know if it will work for everyone.  but I had to forward this positive treatment for you all to consider.  I believe the ointment is a steroid (?) cream of some kind. Not sure.  Can't do any harm checking with your doctors about this. We are hoping it won't flare right back up when these RX run out.  Good luck to everyone.

Songster307
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I looked up the Neem oil on the internet and became  a little alarmed as it is an insect repellent and pestiside.  There must be something more gentle than that!

Reddy2
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A sample of Dr. Hauschka eye balm did zero for my skin. At $50+ for a tiny jar that would not last a week, I think it's a total rip-off. A small dab of Thera Neem cream on my inner arm caused (24 hrs later) severe hives the entire length of the arm.  I am having better luck using a grapeseed/olive oil blend on and under the eyes. The skin looks/feels better, the vegetable oil smells nice, it's safe and it's inexpensive.

Warm compresses are ruining my skin. I am trying lid scrubs w/o the compresses. Ocusoft for now. I had bought SteriLid, but it would not foam (too old?). I had to return it.

Anyone have an opinion on yellow mercuric oxide opthamalgic ointment? My whole family and I used it for styes and eyelid infections for decades with no problem. It gave instant relief and cleared up infections in 1-2 days. I read a 1987 report from the NIH that it was safe and effective for blepharitis. Nevertheless, the US banned it because of the mercury. Allergan in France manufactures it w/ the name Opthergine.
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First, I want to thank all of you for your suggestions. I am trying several of them and will report on each later.

As a knowledgeable allergy sufferer, this I know: You can suddenly develop an allergy to things/foods you have used/eaten for years.

One year I was allergic to peanuts. Two years later, peanuts were ok to eat again. This year house dust went from a minor to a major problem. And for the first time in my life, allergies are affecting the eyes.

Years ago, my eyes swelled up and I couldn't figure out the cause. Days later, my upper back turned red. Then I knew it was caused by acne medication with benzoyl peroxide that I had used for several years!

In the case of the Neem cream (see my previous post), I was ok for the first 24 hours, then broke out in hives. I immediately took an allergy pill, put a wet washcloth on the skin and was ok after an hour.

Finally, a lot of people make the mistake of seeing a dermatologist instead of an allergist. Dermatologists are good for things like fungal infections and skin cancers. When you itch or swell, see an allergy doctor.
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Like many of you, I've been battling this problem for years now.  Tried not wearing contacts, eye make etc. for at least 6 weeks with no relief.  I saw an allergist who prescribed the Desonide ointment, which others of you have used.   If nothing else, it helped keep it in check but once I stopped using it, the itchy redness would return within a week.  I recently saw a nurse practitioner who specializes in dermatology for another skin irriation and I mentioned the eyelid problem to her.  She recommended taking FISH OIL CAPSULES, 3 pills per day.  I had been taking one a day, 1200 mg (for high triglycerides) and increased it to two a day, figuring I'd increase to 3 if that didn't work.  The relief I have gotten is nothing short of amazing.  The NP said she started taking it herself for a recurring skin irritation and it completely cleared it up.  .  Another option is to take "Udo" oil which you can buy at Whole Foods.  The key ingrediant is the omega 3 fatting acids, same things that's in the fish oil caps.  I've only been taking the 2 pills for 3 weeks now so only time will tell if it has staying power but I wanted to let you all know in case you want to try it.  I've been reading this forum off and on for several years, in search of a cure.  Will keep you posted.  
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We were wondering if the Desonide would cure or just keep the itch away while he was using it.  I am not sure about the Atarax and what it is doing.  It is such a relief not to itch he is like a different person.  I think he thought he would go crazy or tear his skin off if something didn't work.  Anyway, thanks for the additional info on the fish oil caps.  We will get some.  Actually, good to take anyway, so I don't think he wants to take a chance on this thing coming back.  Grateful for this forum.  People are wonderful and amazing to care enough to share.  Thank you so much.

Oh, I don't agree that a dermatologist is the wrong person to see about these things.  Allergists are needed too, but both or either are good to contact.  Our local Mr. Skin Doctor is an older guy and believe me he knows what's wrong with skin when there is a problem. He took one look at my mom's melanoma on the bottom of her foot and said  "I wouldn't touch it with a ten foot pole."  Off to the surgeon immediately.  Saved her life we are sure.  He was appalled to learn her foot doctor wanted to "cut that thing out"!!!  Amazing.  A good skin doctor is hard to find.  Look for an old one with lots of experience under his belt.

Songster307
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1-2 Eyecups: an alternative to wet washcloths (nice glass ones, bought at Whole Foods, $5.99 ea). Wash cups w/ antibacterial soap and rinse w/ hot water. Leaning over sink, fill cups w/ warm water to overflowing and place on closed eyes for 5 mins. Refill as needed from the tap. It feels great (and no more drippy washcloths that go cold and rub your skin). Do your lid scrub or shampoo as usual and use the cup to rinse it out.

Skin Saver: Aquaphor (thick vaseline) under and on the eyelids, being careful keep it away from the eyelashes so the shampoo can get into the hair follicle to kill the bacteria.

Eye Scrub Technique: hold the corner of the eye taut w/ one hand and go back and forth over the edge of the lids several times w/ the other using a q-tip or clean fingertip.

I switched back to SteriLid (it has the antibacterial tea tree oil, Ocusoft does not) and leaving it on for a while before rinsing (to kill whatever is causing this malady). Also, taking Omega 3 daily and Vitamin D. Also, I contacted friends overseas to find yellow mercuric oxide ointment. 3 French companies manufacture it, including Allergan and Bausch and Lomb. I read yellow mer. ox. kills eyelash lice and the parasite demodex (a cause of blepharitis), not to mention that it was the best thing for styes. I was very upset when the US took it off the market some years ago - after being an effective treatment for eye infections for over one hundred years!




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First I want to thank you all for your wonderful suggestions. Your insights and experiences have helped me immensly,  I went to the opthomologist who suggested one more Tobradex treatment (Steroid/antibiotic cream) for 5 more days, followed by a daily and nightly application of OTC hydrocortzone cream with aloe from Walgreens.  It has been 7 days and I am totally clear from the dreaded red, itch burn eye area!  I can even wear a new base makeup I bought from" Origins" claiming to be all natural.  SO far no bad reaction.
I followed your advice to add omega 3 Fish Oil capsules to my vitamen regiman too.
So good to have  found reliefe.  I also am waiting on my order for the Thera Neem cream sweet orange and the Dr Hauschka cream which I will use daily as soon as it arrives in the mail. I must say the OTC hydrocortizone cream from Walgreens does lubricate the skin wonderfully without making my eyes puffy from over creaming in the mornings.  And the leathery skin is no more with it!
I will keep you all posted as to this continued success.  Hope this helps others as well.
We are all suffering so!  Thank you all for your wonderful help!

Blonde_pony
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Hi all, I am wondering whether neem helps heal the outer eye area, or does it actually help blepharitis?  I'm going to an opthomologist but it seems like if the eye is still tearing a lot then the underlying condition is still there?  Any thoughts?  Thanks!
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In my Mar 05 post I reported getting severe hives from Thera Neem cream. After discontinuing it one week ago, I'm still breaking out a little.

Re glass eye cups: Whole Foods' price is $6.99. I bought a 2nd at CVS for $3.89 to bathe both eyes simultaneoulsy in warm water before using the SteriLid scrub. My skin looks so much better since I stopped using wash cloths.

Instead of constantly taking antihistamines and Zaditor eye drops, I find rinsing the eyes w/ plain warm water (w/ the eye cup) helps with mild itch. Thera Tears Lubricant Eye Drops seem more soothing than Refresh Tears.


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I'm an RN. My eyelids coincided w/a crazy flare up in my knees and thighs. I'm talking since December of 08. Right now, my knees are less inflammed. I'm running on a Progressive Care Unit so, this was terrifying. My eye flare ups come and go. But the red was a "burning" red. And the inflammation was embarassing. And the wrinkles it left after the swelling and redness subsided. I'm thinking autoimune, possibly sjogren's syndrome.
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Hello!  Glad to hear some of you are having some relief!  I too am feeling so much better!  I finally got a prescription for the Desonide cream.  I have also been doing the lid washing with baby shampoo.  I no longer have the itching or redness.  I am not for sure if either of these things helped, i am just glad to be free for now.  For the itching i started putting ice on them and that worked great and actually would last for several hours.  For all of you still suffering I feel for you.  Hang in there!  It doesn't like anyone stays free from this for long.  Keep passing on the helpful advice!  I really appreciate it!
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i dont know why but every time i run or play sports or even just sweat my eyes will swell up and stay swollen for two days i've tried almost every type of allergy medicine even eye drops nothing works i dont have insurance so i cant get any tests done ive had it for 8 years  im still in school so its really hard because i have to take gym, i dont know what to do
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hello, I can not explain how much comfort I have found just reading this. It is heart wrenching to know so many people are going through the same thing that I am. I would never wish this upon any one. I have also been to all of the same doctors been on all the same topical steriods, oral medications and drops. Never any change. I have been dealing with this since June 2008. I was reading on another forum about similar symptoms and someone had posted that nail polish was the trigger for her symptoms. If she wasn't around it and didn't use it she was fine. This included clear nail polish as well and even after the polish was dry. I was doing better recently. I painted my nails Thursday night, woke up Friday morning to swollen red itchy eyes and around my mouth. It is now Wednesday and after reading the post, I immediately took the nail polish off. I will check back in and let everyone know if my symptoms have gone away or not. Maybe try to watch if you have symptoms after painting your nails or for guys if your around a girls who paint their nails or wears fake fingernails. Hopefully this will be of some help!
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http://hubpages.com/hub/You-Didnt-Know-to-Ask-Your-Doctor-About-Eye-Allergies

i have tried a variety of ways and products....one product i tried was Alocril, I have used it in the past two years when i have a flare up usually in the spring time and it works well (for me so far).  I had forgotten all about it all this year and now I have to suffer the consequences of having the severe symptoms again. A small bottle of 5ml of Alocril (well maybe 2 bottles) per year will do the trick for me.  One drop in each eye twice a day, wait a good 15 minutes before putting my contacts in my eye, nightly usage of preservative free contact lens solution (CLEAR CARE) helps keep the debris away and on with my life.

I now know that I have seasonal allergic conjunctivitis with flare ups during the end of winter and near spring time.  My eyes actually feels better in the wintertime.  It wasn't because of my dog, my place of work, makeup, linens, or other reasons I thought was the cause. It was the change in the climate, springtime is when my eyelids feel the burn and my eye doctor takes my money and give me a prescription for ALOCRIL...hopefully another year of happier life without burning eyelids.   (fingerscrossed)
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Well I want to thank everyone for the tip about NEEM. After starting a new job, one day I was in a meeting and I thought my glasses were dirty. When I took them off, the lenses were covered with flakes. How embarassing. So I've had it. I tried some Neem cream by derma e and it worked after the first time. It stung a little when I put it on but in about an hour, my eyes weren't nearly as red and the flakiness was much better. Today, barely red at all - I actually look normal. Thanks again.
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As I have posted before, I too have this red, itchy, burning skin all around my eyes.  I have a question:  Does anyone have uncontrolable tearing contantly after the redness and itch/burn goes away?  My eyes appear well, all except for the constant tearing.  My opthomologist said the bottom lid is slightly swollen causing no contact with the eye itself and tears then cannot drain properly into the cavity or duct.  ANyone else have this same reaction after your eyes seem clear and well?  
They actually feel pretty good all except for that constant tearing.
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Well I'm hoping this isn't another case of something that seems to work and then doesn't, but I'll pass it along anyway.  I've had virtually all of the symptoms listed above and have recently kept them at bay by using Gold Bond Ultimate Restoring Skin Therapy Lotion with CoQ10 about 3-4 times a day.  

Would still like to know if anyone has found this to be contagious (?)

RedEyefromLasVegas
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P.S.  Just noticed the Gold Bond tube says avoid contact with eyes.  I've had no problems though some inevitably gets into my eyes, but of course given that caveat you'll want to make your own decision about using this product.

RedEyefromLasVegas
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Thanks so much for the info on Gold Bond, will try that next.  Hydrocotizone cream also says avoid the eyes, but my opthomologist said it would be ok if some got in.  I think that has helped mine some.  Right now I am very slightly red, but no itching or burn at all just tearing to beat the band!  But I can deal with that with Naphcon A drops.  As far as contagious...only to sometimes go to my other eye after a while, which may be my own fault for dabbing with Kleenex to both eyes.  I try now to be more careful and nit di that.  My husband has not been affected at all,  but he washes his hands religously even though he rubs his eyes at times and I constantly tell him to watch out and not do that!  I feel almost paranoid at times and I guess I am overkill on trying to be fastidious.
Good luck on your Gold Bond, I will keep that one in mind, but so far the over the counter hydrocortisone cream from Walgreens has worked ok for me.  Thanks so much for your suggestions.  
Blonde-pony
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Ok, so im a 22 yr old male who 2 months ago woke up one morning to a swollen lower eyelid. The eyelid itself was swollen, allong with the skin underneith it, causing 2 ripples to form.  It was red and dry.  Over the last 2 months i have tried warm compresses and cold compresses, only showing minimal improvement. I have to apply neosporen multiple times a day to keep the skin from becoming so dry and tight.  That skin does peel on occasion as well. Some days it seems like it is getting better, then it takes a turn for the worse.  The swelling has enlarged and moved down lower below my eyelid. The eye itself is completely fine, no itching, no burning, no vision loss. It is just the skin below my eye starting at the eyelashes. It is not sty as i have no point of swelling or white spots. As the day goes on it seems to get better but just barely and then every morning when i wake up its bad or even worse.  This swellings runs from the inside corner of my eyelid to about 4/5 away across to the other side under my eye.  It can become itchy at times but not severly,usually wipe it down and apply more neosporen.  Can anybody help me or explain what this might be?  it doesnt sound exactly like the symptoms described above are. Is it a skin rash causing the inflammation and dryness? could it be some type of std?  allergy?  please help
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It sounds like blepharitis--I'd go to a doctor. In the meantime clean the lids (including the inner rims) with baby shampoo.
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My heart goes out to you, We all have been suffering with this strange redness and some have burning and itching that drives us crazy. At least you have no burning with yours. Yes, I would go to an opthomologist but one that is also an external disease specialist.
It could be blepharitis, but only a specialist will be able to tell. Be sure and go when it is flaring so the Dr can see more.  My opthomologist really didnt know what mine was. And gave me perscription Tobradex that was a steroid antibiotic that cleared mine up for a while.  Mine tends to come back though.  I have had the dry tight feeling like you, and a tiny white bump as well.  I wish we knew what this is,  All my doctors I have been to, and I have been to four, say ALLERGY.  I think the creams I am using on my face are the culprit which contain: Methylparaben, which is a carenogen that is banned in Europe, but FDA has not here in US!!!.  I read all ingredients now and avoid this additive.  Found out it causes irritation to skin, and eyes, as well as other horrors.
Anyway, try the Johnsons Baby shampoo when you wash.  The   1% Hydrocortisone cream worked also for me and it is over the counter.  I dabbed it on at night and it also helped moisturize.  But ask your doctor what you should do.  
Keep us informed on what your doctor finds out.  Another tip. wash your hands religiously and never touch your eye unless you do.  I know you probably do, just a reminder.
Good luck and all our prayers and concern for your healing of this awful ailment.
We all are a member of this awful club it seems.


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I have read most of your testimonies. I have had the same red, itchy, scaly, puffy eyes on and off for 2 years. I have seen a homeopathic doctor and she said is is related to my LIVER function. Therefore, I have been detoxing my liver. I am eating foods to help with the detoxing. Right now I am doing a colon cleanse along with liver and kidney detox. It is getting worse, but I hope this is part of the detoxing process. I have also heard that taking NIACIN on a short term basis can clean the liver quickly. I have not tried that yet. That is my last solution. Let me know if any of this makes sense and helps. I believe stress can add to it too.
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Hi all:

I am sorry to hear that some of you are still having trouble with your eyes.  I am starting to wonder if we are all having the same symptoms but different "problems".  My last post was on March 2.  It seems as though the Neem oil cream did the trick.  I still have not had a flare up since I used it several weeks ago.  One thing I did want to mention; however, is that the same day I started using the Neem oil cream, my doctor increased my doseage of Effexor which I take for depression.  I'm starting to wonder if my eyes had something to do with that????  Kind of a long shot, but it's amazing how depression can cause physical symptoms as well.  I also am taking Omega 3 Fish Oil every day, but didn't start that until after the neem oil.  

I will keep in touch to see how everyone is doing.  
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Thanks for the update Pumpmom!  Mine has started to get much better too (just since 3/18/09).  In part this is due to a prescription to a topical steroid (FML). At the same time, I stopped using all moisturizers, eye scrubs and everything else in the eye area.  I am cleansing with a simple oil cleanser and moisturizing with a drop of vitamin E oil. I'm using an all-natural mascara and concealer (Jane Iredale).   My best guess right now is that I may be allergic to ingredients in something i was using as an eye scrub (laurel sulfate?).  The white spots that I had are coming off, the color returned to normal and I no longer wake up with flaky lids.  I'll check back in a few weeks.
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last year in the spring/summer i started developing swollen  eyelids that were red and itchy. the skin would flake off and it was miserable - much like you all are saying. it was the worst when i woke up in the mornings. it would start in the under eyelid first and then after a day or two the upper would follow.
the difference from what i read here and what happened to me was that this was also accompanied by a red itchy rash type thing on my neck (front of throat). i never got one without the other. my doctor put me on allegra and nasonex and said it was allergies. it didnt clear it up right away and i just figured it wasnt a miracle cure. it went away and i havent had any problems until 2 days ago. i have changed nothing as far as foods, chemicals, makeups - etc.
nothing is helping - but more importantly i want to know WHAT it is and how to help it.

anyone having the neck thing too???
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i've had this happen numerous times in the past, but it usually disappears within a few days.  this time, i'm having a heinous flare-up and i am having great difficulty alleviating the pain/itching.  i can't even sleep!  

after reading through the majority of these posts, i think i am going to look into the Neem oil.  i just so happen to have a pure shea butter/vitamin E product at home that i bought from a vendor at an exhibition in '08 and that seems to provide a little relief.  they do have a website, but they are local business in texas, not national to my knowledge.  i decided to provide a link in case anyone is interested:
http://youbuttabelieveit.com/sbinfo.html

i decided to use it because someone else in this thread mentioned vitamin E.  i think!

i have been putting baby oil and eucerin on my eyelids off and on for the past few days.  i admit i have exacerbated the situation by wearing makeup and rubbing my eyes, but this is ridiculous!

i'm pretty sure the flare-up is a direct result of me using this Avon product (an eye serum).  i was away on business this week and used the product before a banquet to brighten up my eye area.  i used this product years ago and did not have bad results, so i assumed i would be okay.  but by the end of the night, i felt itchy and by morning i was severely swollen and puffy.  i'm positive it's an allergic reaction to the eye serum i was using.  i'm never using it again.

in the meantime, i'm feeling really down about it.  i had no idea i was this vain!  not that there is anything particularly wrong with wanting to look good!!  but apparently i've been so unwilling to be seen like this that i've been covering it up with make-up....so a day off without it is on the agenda for tomorrow.

btw...i know this has been asked...i do have a dog, have had her for 4 years, but i was not with her when i had the flare-up...i was at a hotel.  my previous flare-ups were also not this bad.  i do wear contacts and have been for nearly 20 years.  i use benzoyl peroxide products for my acne-prone skin (same one for years), but only once per day.  i usually wash my face with a Dove bar; also been doing that for years.  i have no other coinciding symptoms, just the eye flare-up.  and i did have one 6 oz alcoholic beverage the evening i used the serum, which may have also exacerbated the problem potentially.

--c from texas
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I've had this problem off and on for under a year.  Sometimes I think it could be related to nail polish use but I don't always have a flare up when I use the polish (clear).  I have 2 dogs.  My husband had itchy eyelids once, during the time that both a friend and I had a flare up.  My friend and I BOTH also had itchiness behind our ears and she had a rash go down her neck.  She was told to brew some green tea and occasionally dab the cool tea on her eye, ear and neck area throughout the day.  She kept a cup in the bathroom and when she would need to go, she would dab the tea.  Be sure to use a clean, separate cottonball for each eye.  I also did this and improved but I am not constantly flared-up so I don't know if it worked or not.  I am going to try it again and also maybe look for the Neem Cream and the Rue Fennel.
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**update**  I had a big flare up the other day.  I had also run out of my Dr. Hauschka eye balm and had no neem in the house (stopped using neem a while ago)  It was so bad I broke down and put cortisone on (big no-no) and decided to try something new that I heard work wonders on all sorts of skin problems.  Egyptian Magic!!

Wowza.  Worked like a charm.  Reduced the redness, itch and swelling pronto.  I was left with the dreaded peeling which the Egyptian magic is smoothing away quickly. My lids haven't looked or felt this good in a long time.   I'm in love......  All natural, $36 but much cheaper than Dr. H eye Balm and a tiny bit goes a very long way.

I HIGHLY recommend this.

ps I believe my flareup was from Windex!!
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I too am having the same problem, it has been about a month now.  The itching has kind of gone away, but now my eyes are swollen and slightly purple.  I applied vaseline at night before i went to bed so my eyelidss are less dry in the morning.  Also to help relieve the itching i put an ice pack on my eye, which definitely helped and i wish i thought of it sooner! Scratching it definitely made it worst over time.

I'm 21 years old and this it the FIRST time this has ever happened to me.  Thinking back of what could have possibly caused this I realized it could be (1) my eye makeup brushes (2) Lack of vitamin D(sunlight) since I started school and tend to stay indoors or (3) an eyemakeup remover i started using about a month ago and stopped using which does contain Propylene Glycol, which i noticed many of you had mentioned.  

As for a solution, i think it's going to have to take time for the swelling to go away since i did rub my eyes a lot the first few weeks.  I've also tried to use less eye makeup, which has been difficult! But if i do, vaseline is a great eye makeup remover, it also leaves me eyelids smoother.

My best advice is to try not to rub your eyelids...i know it's hard, put an ice pack to relieve the itchiness.  The more you rub it the worst it gets. Also, apply VASELINE at night before you go to bed to help with dryness.

Also, after reading all the previous entries, i'm going to try and get more sunlight and see if it helps.  

Goodluck to all of you!!!
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Hi there,

I'm more and more convinced that my condition is an allergy.  I haven't had a flare up in about a week.  I've been avoiding using a lot of things.  Makeup doesn't cause flareups for me, as long as I remove it with an oil cleanser (very gentle, nothing harsh).   Neem Oil mixed with Organix South Neem Moisturizer allows my eyes to return to normal (in the same way that a steroid cream does) very quickly.  I noticed on WIkipedia that natural Neem contains some steroids, but I don't know enough about it to say that is why.

TooTired---Windex???  That would be interesting if that was my allergy because I using a lot of windex to clean my glasses while using oils to moisturize my eyes.  The glasses would get oil on them, then I would use Windex to clean them off.  

My other potential allergens are laurel sulfate, some ingredient in Differin (Propylene Glycol?) or my new puppy.  Also, stress may be a trigger.  I'm still working on this for myself.

Why is using hydrocortisone cream bad?  

Thanks again--please keep the information rolling in and hope you are all going to remain healthy.
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Hello!

First, Differen (PG) and Benzoyl Peroxide have been know to cause reactions.  Not everyone but in many.  Also, salicylic acids and retinoids which are found in many acne and anti ageing (aging) tropicals.

Windex:  I was cleaning mirrors and quickly spraying windex high up on a large mirror.  Minutes later I started to feel that familiar burning on one eye and sure enough, it swelled up and continues to be slightly swollen and now peeling. Some of the product may have landed on my face?  Could have been the fumes from it.Anyway, I felt pretty sure it was the cause of this recent flareup.

Cortisone and steroids are great for relieving symptoms but the cause an addition (skin can no longer return to normal without them) and they permanently thin the skin!

My lids are ruined because of them :(
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MerBear1007 - I also had the neck thing, but I didn't realize it was related at the time.  My dermatologist here (I'm in Korea now.) said my eyes were just too dry.  When my eyes started swelling last winter, I had started using eye-lifting/anti-wrinkle cream and a benzoyl peroxide cream, which I had been using for a while, along with living in a very dry winter environment.  Together, this caused my eyes to "freak out".  I've stopped using the eye-lifting creams and now just use Clinique's "all about eyes rich".  I know I should probably use something more natural, like Dr. H., but it's so expensive to get it over here.  Clinique is just cheaper and easier to get for now.  Also, when I got to Korea, my skin started freaking out.  I've never broken out so badly in my life.  I don't know if it was related b/c I see and hear that it happens pretty frequently to white girls that live here.  My derm put me on Accutane after trying several other things.  I wouldn't say I recommend it, but I'm on my 5th month and it's finally starting to work...no more breakout and I don't have to use acne creams that make my eyelids swell.  (Read my other posts if you want the whole story.)  Good luck!
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