Did you know that rosacea can affect the eyes as well as the skin? Ocular rosacea may include dry eye, tearing, burning, swollen eyelids, recurrent styes and potential vision loss from corneal damage. Though many rosacea patients may only experience minor eye symptoms, it’s important to discuss ocular rosacea with your dermatologist and eye doctor. Here are a few tips to help ease the discomfort and potentially avoid symptoms associated with ocular rosacea.
Avoid sun and wind: Wearing UV-rated sunglasses can protect your eyes from the sun’s harmful effects, as well as shield them from wind and other environmental factors.
Wash carefully around your eyes: Many ophthalmologists recommend daily eyelash shampooing with a tearless shampoo on a damp washcloth. You could also ask your eye doctor about a lid scrub.
Apply warm compresses and gently massage the eyelids: Not only will this feel refreshing, but massaging the eyelids will help loosen any debris in the tear glands and stimulate circulation.
Eat fish: A recent study showed fish oil may reduce dry eye symptoms associated with ocular rosacea.1
Use your medication: Be sure to follow your doctor’s orders regarding long-term medical therapy. If your symptoms persist or worsen, you may need to see an eye specialist.
Bhargava, Rahul, Mini Chandra, Utsav Bansal, et al. A Randomized Controlled Trial of Omega 3 Fatty Acids in Rosacea Patients with Dry Eye Symptoms. Current Eye Research 2016: 1-7.