How Do I Treat Itchy and Dry Eyelids?

Gender: Female / Age: 30 - 39
Dr. Schultz: Dry, itchy, swollen eyelids are a common, very bothersome problem. First, fresh nail polish is a very common cause of eyelid dermatitis. This is discussed in greater detail in episode #12, Common Causes for Itchy and Swollen Eyelids. However, if that's not the cause, then keep in mind that any allergen or irritant can cause it, so often times figuring out the cause is a process of trials and errors. If you're using neosporin cream, that could be an issue as it is a very common allergen. Next, if you find yourself rubbing your eyes you will make the rash worse, so it is important to first treat the itch or dryness of your eyes with lubricating eye drops or eye gel, and/or an oral antihistamine. Once you stop rubbing things will get better. In addition, you must treat the irriation that already exsits on the eyelids. Using an over the counter 1% hydrocortisone cream for 2-3 days on the rash is appropriate, but as the skin on the eyelids is very sensitive, the cortisone cream should be used very sparingly. Lastly, you should constantly add moisture back to your eyelids using simple non irritation products like Vaseline petroleum jelly. If these measures are not helpful, see your dermatologist to discuss the possibility of allergy or patch testing.