Itchy Eyelids

Itchy Eyelids: Causes, Picture, Symptoms, and Treatment

Have you experienced itchy eyelids? The problem tempts you to scratch your eyelids to relieve the itchy feeling. But, it can only make the problem worse. When you scratch the area, it can further irritate or cause infection. Itching sensation of your eyelids can occur due to inflammation. It is also known as blepharitis. The condition results when your eyelashes grow. It can affect both your eyes. Therefore, you need to know more information about the condition. It will help you take preventive measures to overcome the problem. You can also take steps to avoid the problem from flaring up in the future. Most of the times, you can treat the condition at home with simple remedies. But, some conditions need medical assistance. It is essential to know when to seek a doctor’s help. So, you can prevent complications and ensure good eye health.

What Do You Mean By Itchy Eyelids?

You can experience itchy eyelids due to clogging of the oil gland at the base of your eyelashes. The problem can lead to severe irritation and itching. When you rub your eyes, it can cause more irritation and lead to red eyes. Several different conditions can lead to itchy eyelids. You need to take the necessary steps to manage the condition. Else, it can become chronic and difficult to treat. Although the problem may not damage your vision and lead to blindness, you can feel extreme discomfort due to the itching. The problem is not contagious, so it does not affect your social interaction in any manner. It also does not trigger any permanent vision problems. But, you need to take steps to control the problem. It helps you deal with the irritation better.

Symptoms Associated With Itchy Eyelids

Apart from the itching sensation, you can also experience other symptoms with the problem. So, you can observe the following signs that indicate some problem:

  • Red eyes
  • Watery eyes
  • Stinging or burning sensation in your eyes
  • Greasy appearing eyelids
  • Swelling of the eyelids
  • Reddish color skin on your eyelids
  • Sticking of the eyelids
  • Sensitivity to light
  • Flaking of skin around your eyes
  • Observe crusted eyelashes (after waking up in the morning)
  • Increase in frequency of blinking
  • Misdirected eyelashes (eyelashes having abnormal growth)
  • Loss of eyelashes

Causes Of Itchy Eyelids

Several factors can cause itchy eyelids. It is difficult to pinpoint the exact reason triggering the problem. At times, more than one factor can lead to the eyelid inflammation. So, the following issues can lead to triggering the itching sensation of your eyelids:

Seborrheic Dermatitis

Seborrheic Dermatitis

It is nothing but the problem that causes dead skin cells to appear. In most cases, it affects your scalp as well as eyebrows. The problem can lead to eyelid dermatitis. So, you can see the skin on your eyelids or around it become dry and flaky. It can cause itching, which will irritate you. It is also known as psoriasis or eczema on the eyelids. At times, irritants or allergens can trigger inflammation. Then, the condition is known as eyelid contact dermatitis.


External entities like bacteria can affect your eyelids. It can lead to severe irritation and uncomfortable feeling. The infection due to bacteria can make your eyelids more prone to inflammation and itching.

Issues With Oil Glands

Malfunctioning or clogged eyelids can lead to itching of your eyelids. The clogged pores can trap the unwanted particles inside the pore. So, it can result in swelling and other problems.


Ocular rosacea or eye rosacea can cause redness, irritation, and swelling of the eyelids. It is the first sign to more chronic skin condition (rosacea). The problems can affect your forehead, nose, cheeks, and chin, the problem dilates the small as well as superficial blood vessels in the region. So, you can suffer from facial redness and irritation of eyelids.


You can suffer from allergies, which can lead to itching sensation of your eyelids. The allergies can occur due to an adverse reaction to your eye makeup, eye medication or contact lens solution.

Eyelash Mites

The presence of eyelash mites can trigger itchy eyelids. The mites (D. Folliculorum) can affect your eyelashes. It feeds on the dead skin cells found around your eyelashes or other areas of the eyes (for example eyelids). Most people have small amounts of mites in their body. But, it increases when it spreads from close contact with other people with mites or from animals. The accumulation of eyelash mites can result in adverse effects on your skin. It can also worsen preexisting skin problems. So, you can suffer from irritation and other

Eyelash Lice

Eyelash Lice

The presence of lice on your eyelashes can cause itching. You may think that the lice come from your head. But, common pubic lice live in your eyelashes. It mostly reaches the eyelids by hand contact from the genital area to your eyes. The lice cling on the eyelash by its root and triggers itching around the skin in the region.

Complications Occurring Due To Itchy Eyelids

Itching of your eyelash can trigger several other complications. It can cause severe irritation that can lead to swelling and other issues. So, people suffering from the inflammation and irritation of eyelid can trigger other complications like:

Eyelid Skin Problems

The itching sensation in your eyelids can result in scarring of the region. When you suffer from the irritation for a long duration of time, it can lead to skin disfigurement. The long-term suffering from the problem can lead to the eyelid edges turning outward or inward.

Dry Eyes/ Excess Tearing

The eyelid irritation can occur due to the clogging of pores or abnormal oil secretion from the pores of your eyelids. It can also lead to the accumulation of debris shed from eyelids. So, the debris like dandruff flakes can accumulate in your tear film. Do you what tear film is? It is the combination of mucus, oil, and water solution that can form tears. The abnormal tear film can have adverse effects on your eyes. It interferes negatively during the healthy lubrication of your eyelids. Therefore, you can suffer from irritation. It can lead to excess tearing or dry eyes.

Trouble Using Contact Lenses

If you use contact lens for clear vision, then itchy eyelids can make it more uncomfortable. You cannot use contact lenses until the irritation subsides. The itching can affect the amount of lubrication present in your eyes. So, your eyes become dry. It can make wearing contact lenses an issue.



When you develop an infection near the base of your eyelashes, it can result in the sty. A Sty is a painful lump that you can find on the eyelid. It usually appears on the outside part of your eyelid. So, everyone can see it on the surface of your eyelid. Sty appears as a red, painful looking bump on the eyelid surface. It looks like a boil or pimple filled with pus.



The irritation of eyelid occurs when the oil glands along the margin of your eyelid get blocked. It can also result in chalazion behind your eyelashes. The clogging can lead to bacterial infection leading to the red and swollen eyelid. The chalazion can appear more prominent on the inside of your affected eyelid.

Chronic Pink Eye

Chronic Pink Eye

Itchy eyelids can cause irritation. So, it makes your eye susceptible to attack from a virus or bacteria. So, the problem can lead to conjunctivitis. It occurs when the inflammation affects the thin white lining of your eyes. So, the eyelid inflammation can cause a frequent bout of conjunctivitis.

Injury To Your Cornea

The constant irritation or itching of your eyelids can lead to injury to the cornea. The misdirected eyelashes or inflamed eyelids trigger the development of ulcer on the cornea. The ulcer or sore to the cornea can cause insufficient tearing. So, you are at more risk of getting an infection on the cornea. It will only injure the cornea.

Diagnosis Of Itchy Eyelids

You need to maintain good hygiene to overcome eyelid inflammation. You need to clean the affected eyelids well and care for it. Better care will help overcome your itchy eyelids with ease. But, if your signs or symptoms do not improve despite your best care, then make an appointment with your doctor. Your doctor can use different diagnostic techniques to detect the actual cause of the problem. So, the different tests and procedures used to diagnose the eyelid itching are:

Physical Assessment

Your doctor performs the physical assessment of your eyelids. The doctor carefully examines the eyes as well as eyelids. To detect the exact problem, your doctor uses a special magnifying instrument. The instrument can detect the root cause of the problem. So, your doctor can develop a proper treatment plan for alleviating the irritation.

Swab Test

Your doctor swabs the affected skin. The skin sample from the eyelid can detect the actual problem. The swab collects either the crust that forms on your eyelid or the oil from the clogged pores. So, the sample gets analyzed for allergy, infection due to fungi or bacteria.

Treatment For Itchy Eyelids

You can opt for different ways of treating the problem. Depending on the severity of the issue, your doctor can suggest an ideal treatment method. Therefore, you have the following treatment options:

Self-Care Methods

Maintaining proper hygiene at home is the first step to prevent itchy eyelids from worsening. You need to wash your eyes properly. Using a warm compress can also manage the problem. For simple cases of itching, the self-care measures can provide relief. When the self-care measures fail to manage the problem, your doctor can suggest other treatments.

Prescription Medications

For more severe cases of eyelid irritation, your doctor can prescribe taking medication. The following prescription medications can offer relief:

Medicines To Fight Infection

Your doctor prescribes antibiotics to provide relief from itching. When applied to your eyelid directly, it can fight bacterial infections. You can opt from ointments, creams, or eye drops to resolve the infection. People who do not respond to topical antibiotics need to take an oral antibiotic to get relief.

Medicine To Control Inflammation

Your doctor can prescribe steroid eye drops to manage the inflammation. At times, you need both antibiotics as well as anti-inflammatory drugs to combat the problem.

Immune Boosters

Your doctor suggests taking medication that can influence the immune system. So, you can get relief from the symptoms when you take topical cyclosporine. The prescription medication is a calcineurin inhibitor alleviating the problems associated with itchy eyelids.

Managing Skin Problems

At times, certain skin problems can lead to eyelid inflammation and irritation. So, the doctor prescribes the treatment for the following skin conditions:

  • Rosacea
  • Seborrheic dermatitis
  • Eczema
  • Psoriasis

By treating the underlying condition, you can manage the problem from affecting your life adversely.

Remember, people who get the inflammation of their eyelids are prone to the problem in the future too. It rarely does not disappear completely. Even after the success of your treatment, you can expect it to affect you again. So, you need to adopt good hygiene and daily attention to your eyelids. Use eyelid scrubs and clean the affected region. People who fail to respond to different treatment have a serious underlying problem. It can affect your eyes or lead to loss of eyelashes. It can indicate the presence of eyelid cancer. Therefore, you need immediate medical treatment to combat the problem.

Preventing Itchy Eyelids

You need to adopt some home care remedies to prevent itchy eyelids from affecting you again. The self-care measures offer you relief from the problem and avoid its recurrence. So, you need to follow the pointers suggested below to alleviate the distress and uncomfortable feeling associated with itchy eyelids.

Clean Your Eyes Every Day

You need to clean your eye daily to avoid itching sensation of your eyelids. It is the self-care remedy you have to follow two times a day. When you experience flare-ups, you have the clean your eyes four times a day. Follow the routine suggested below to get relief from the symptoms associated with the problem:

  • If you experience crusty deposits on your eyelids, then apply a warm compress over the closed eye. Keep it for several minutes to loosen the flaky deposits.
  • Use a warm washcloth immediately after placing the warm compress. Moisten the washcloth with warm water and baby shampoo (diluted) to wash the scales and oily debris from your eyelashes. You need to clean the base of your eyelashes to clear any debris. You need to use a different, clean washcloth for each eye.
  • At times, your itchy eyelids can have more debris accumulation, which needs deliberate cleaning. So, you need to clean the edges of the eyelids, which locates your eyelashes. You need to perform the cleaning gently. Pull your eyelids away from the eye and clean the flakes using a washcloth. You need to rub the base of your eyelashes gently to avoid any damage to the eye or the cornea. If your doctor has prescribed a topical antibiotic for your problem, then use it after cleaning your eyelids.
  • Rinse your eyelids clean with warm water. Pat it dry with a clean and dry towel after following the steps suggested above.
  • Stop using eye makeup when you suffer from eye inflammation. Eye makeup contains chemicals that make it difficult to keep the eyelids clean as well as free of debris. It also puts you at risk of flare-ups due to the reintroduction of bacteria to your eyes. So, you can suffer from an allergic reaction and subsequent itchy feeling.

Lubricate Your Eyes

People who have suffered from itchy eyelids can experience dry eye. It can worsen the itching sensation. Therefore, it is essential to lubricate your eyes. You can try using over-the-counter artificial tears to relieve the dryness. The lubricating eye drops can offer relief from the dryness and prevent itching sensation.

Control Dandruff And Mites

People suffering from dandruff can experience itchy eyelid. Dandruff spreads to the eyelashes triggering the itchy feeling. So, you need to ask your doctor to recommend a good dandruff shampoo. Using the dandruff shampoo as per the instructions provided can relieve the signs and symptoms.

Managing the mites can relieve the itching. So, you can use tea tree shampoo on your eyelids every day to deal with the mites. Scrubbing the eyelids gently with the 50% tea tree oil once a week can also offer you relief. The product is available over the counter. Therefore, you can access it easily to relief from mites.

Take Supplements

No alternative medicine exists for treating itchy eyelids effectively. Therefore, you can never try other methods to handle the symptoms associated with the problem. But taking omega-3 fatty acid supplements can manage the symptoms triggered due to the skin condition, rosacea. It can ease the signs associated with the problem easily. You can include a diet rich in omega-3 fatty acids by including foods like:

  • Walnuts
  • Flaxseeds
  • Trout
  • Tuna
  • Salmon

It can ease the symptoms and manage the skin condition to an extent. So, people suffering from itching in the eyelids due to rosacea can try the option to get relief.


You can control itchy eyelids with good hygiene. In most simple cases, you can alleviate the itching and discomfort with regular cleaning of the affected area. Cleaning regularly can control the symptoms and prevent any complication associated with the problem. With good eyelid care, you can handle the problem most of the time. But, chronic cases of the problem need medical attention. Although the issue cannot cause any harm to your health or life, it can put you in distress. Therefore, you need to control the problem. Follow the cleaning routine lifelong to avoid relapses. It is due to the fact that people once affected by the problem are more prone to it affecting them in the future. So, you can manage the chronic condition with simple self-care remedies at your home.

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