Most of us are familiar with the skin condition called Rosacea.
This condition causes redness and inflammation of the skin, and leads to visible broken blood vessels. In some cases, patients with Rosacea can have breakouts that burn and itch.
This is called Acne Rosacea.
Rosacea can start out as redness of the cheeks and nose. Eventually, though, it can lead to redness of the entire face, neck, and chest, as well as a large, bulbous nose.
At times, this skin condition can even start to affect the eyes, referred to as Ocular Rosacea.
What Is Ocular Rosacea? How to Know If You Have It
Put simply, “Rosacea eyes” is an inflammatory condition that causes redness, itching, and dryness of the eyes.
In many cases, Rosacea of the eye is an indicator that a patient has mild Rosacea. They may not even notice the symptoms on the rest of their skin – just the symptoms in their eyes.
Getting an early diagnosis of Ocular Rosacea can help doctors treat the early stages of this skin condition and prevent some of the painful symptoms that are associated with it.
How do you know if you have Rosacea of the eye? You’ll experience the following Ocular Rosacea symptoms.
- Burning and/or stinging
- Feeling like there’s something in your eyes
- Sensitivity to light
- Redness and swelling of the eye
- Swelling of the eyelid
- Excessive tearing
- Blurred vision
How Is Rosacea of the Eyes Diagnosed and Treated?
You should see your doctor if you experience any of the above symptoms.
Of course, there are multiple issues that can lead to eye dryness and inflammation. However, it’s best to get your symptoms evaluated as soon as possible.
Getting treatment as soon as possible will allow you to get some relief, whether you have Rosacea of the eye or some other condition.
Plus, whatever condition you have, your doctor will be able to nip it in the bud before it turns into something more serious that could affect the health of your eye and/or your eyesight.
For example, if you wait to get treatment, Rosacea can adversely affect your cornea, which can lead to permanent vision loss.
In some cases, because of the inflammation and excessive dryness of your eyes, you can develop additional problems, like Meibomian cysts. Blocked oil glands or tear ducts can be painful and, in turn, lead to other eye issues as well.
Chalazion pictures show just how much of an impact such cysts can have on a person’s comfort and vision.
How will your doctor know whether you have Rosacea or not?
Your doctor will make a diagnosis based on what they see and the symptoms that you tell them about. It’s important, therefore, to make sure you make a note of all of your symptoms, when they occur, and how long they last.
The more information you can give your doctor the better.
How is this condition treated?
Unfortunately, there is currently no known cure for Rosacea. It can, however, be controlled.
Your doctor can prescribe antibiotics, like tetracycline or erythromycin, to eliminate any bacterial infection that might exacerbate your symptoms.
Taking medications prescribed by your doctor can do much to provide relief from your symptoms.
Use of a tea tree soap in the shower and to wash your face is also useful at finding relief.
3 Steps You Can Take to Reduce Your Ocular Rosacea Symptoms
While there might not be a cure for Rosacea, there are things you can do at home to reduce your symptoms and keep your eyes healthy.
1. The Ocular Rosacea Diet
Eat foods high in vitamins and minerals – like fresh fruits and vegetables. Incorporate omega-3 fatty acids into your diet as well.
Avoid spicy foods, alcohol, and foods that cause inflammation.
2. Clean Your Eyes Regularly
Make sure to gently wash your eyes with a mild soap and warm water. Do this in the morning and before you go to bed.
Avoid going to bed with makeup on. Makeup can trap bacteria and scratch your eyes, leading to an infection.
In fact, if your eyes are especially dry or inflamed, avoid makeup and wearing contacts altogether until your symptoms improve.
3. Keep Eyes Hydrated
Drink lots of water every day to keep your body – including your eyes – hydrated.
If you’re experiencing an episode of dry eyes, use a hypochlorous acid eyelid cleanser, up to four times per day or as directed by your doctor.
Always Let Your Doctor Know If Your Symptoms Change
Ocular Rosacea, like any eye condition, is not something that should be taken lightly.
Any eye condition, if left untreated, can result in permanent damage, including vision loss.
Your eyesight is precious. Therefore, if you notice new symptoms, let your doctor know about them as soon as possible.
As recommended earlier, make a note of when the symptoms started, how long they lasted – anything you can think of that will help your doctor make an accurate diagnosis and optimal treatment plan.
You and your eye doctor are a team.
The more information you can give them, the better they can care for your eyes and help you keep your eyes healthy and strong for years to come.