Eye eczema: What is eyelid dermatitis, know all about triggers, warning signs
Eczema in your eyes can make you really uncomfortable with itchy and inflamed eyes. Here's all you want to know about the triggers and causes of this condition from an expert.
Your skin around eyes can be easily inflamed causing red, itchy and dry eyes. There is generally a barrier around the sensitive eye skin that helps protect it but certain allergies or objects can affect it and lead to several troublesome symptoms for your eyes. Eczema in your eyes can make you really uncomfortable with itchy and inflamed eyes. It may be caused by irritants in soaps, shampoos or detergents or dust, smoke or pollen. (Also read: Step-by-step easy eye exercises to improve eyesight, reduce strain)
Dr Kavita Rao, Senior Consultant, Cornea Cataract and Refractive Surgery Services, Aditya Jyot Eye Hospital, A Unit of Dr Agarwal’s Eye Hospital in an interview with HT Digital explains the causes, triggers, symptoms and treatment of eye eczema.
What is eczema in eyes?
Eczema is a condition with dry itchy inflamed, scaly red skin. Eye eczema can be due to allergy or contact dermatitis. Contact dermatitis or eczema around the eyes can be due to coming in contact with certain irritants like chlorine in the pool, soaps, shampoos, perfumes, detergents, contact lens solutions, false eyelashes, spectacles frames, fabric etc. Allergic eczema could be due to airborne allergens, dust, pollen, food substances, tobacco smoke etc.
Symptoms of eye eczema
- Dry, itchy, hyperpigmented, and scaly skin around the eyes and the eyelids.
- It can also affect the conjunctiva causing itchy, red eyes with inflamed red papillary conjunctiva and white ropy discharge from the eyes.
- The cornea can be affected as vernal keratoconjunctivitis with white inflamed spots on the cornea and limbus of the eye.
- Eye rubbing due to the itching may cause corneal ectasia like keratoconus especially in children with atopic allergic eye dermatitis.
How do you treat eczema in the eyes?
- Eczema can be treated by removing the offending cause in cases of contact eczema. Allergy test helps to determine the cause of the eczema in case of allergic cases.
- Typically using an emollient and a short course of a soft topical corticosteroid ointment prescribed by your eye doctor is enough to resolve the eczema. In persistent cases topical non-steroidal eye drops like cyclospotine may be prescribed.
How long does eyelid eczema last?
Contact dermatitis will get better on stopping contact with the offending agent within couple of days, the allergic eye eczema however may take a couple of weeks for resolution
Triggers of eye eczema
Contact dermatitis or eczema around the eyes can be due to contact to certain irritants like chlorine in the pool, soaps, shampoos, perfumes, detergents, contact lens solutions, false eyelashes, spectacles frames, fabric etc. Allergic eczema could be due to airborne allergens, dust, pollen, food substances, tobacco smoke etc
Is eczema around the eyes curable?
It is definitely curable. In chronic long-standing cases however long-term therapy with non-steroidal drops or ointments may be needed to keep the eczema under control.