The blog of Xeno, a slightly mad scientist
I have an article about dry eye syndrome I wrote years ago. Someone named Matt wrote in today saying:
…i found the solution…it was demodex and i was completely! cured after 4 weeks of lid scrubs with tea tree oil…just to let you know.. :-)
I’ve had Blepharitis for years. I’ve always hated my red eyelids in pictures, now I have something to try, which might also relieve my occasional dry eye symptoms (for which I’ve been taking 2 tablespoons of flaxseed oil daily for years). I quickly found confirmation:
CONCLUSION: Demodex potentially causes ocular surface inflammation, meibomian gland dysfunction, and lash abnormalities. Lid scrub with TTO can effectively eradicate ocular Demodex and result in subjective and objective improvements. This preliminary positive result warrants future prospective investigation of Demodex pathogenicity. – nih
Demodex mites cause ocular surface inflammation, MGD and lash abnormalities. – revoptom
What are Demodex? Here they are:
Demodex is a genus of tiny parasitic mites that live in or near hair follicles of mammals. About 65 species of Demodex mites are known; they are among the smallest of arthropods. Two species living on humans have been identified: Demodex folliculorum and Demodex brevis, both frequently referred to as eyelash mites. Demodex canis lives on the domestic dog. Infestation with Demodex mites is common and usually does not cause any symptoms, although occasionally some skin diseases can be caused by the mites. …
The adult mites are only between 0.3 mm and 0.4 mm long, with D. brevis slightly shorter than D. folliculorum. They have a semi-transparent elongated body that consists of two fused segments. Eight short segmented legs are attached to the first body segment. The body is covered with scales for anchoring itself in the hair follicle, and the mite has pin-like mouth-parts for eating skin-cells, hormones and oils (sebum) which accumulate in the hair follicles. The mite’s digestive system is so efficient and results in so little waste that there is no excretory orifice. The mites can leave the hair follicles and slowly walk around on the skin, at a speed of about 8–16 cm/hour, especially at night; they try to avoid light.
Female Demodex folliculorum are somewhat shorter and rounder than males. The total lifespan of a Demodex mite is several weeks. …
The six-legged larvae hatch after 3-4 days, and it takes about seven days for the larvae to develop into adults. The dead mites decompose inside the hair follicles or sebaceous glands.Older people are much more likely to carry the mites; estimates range as high as a 96-98% infestation rate in aged people. The lower rate of children may be due to the fact that children produce much less sebum. It is quite easy to look for one’s own demodex mites, by carefully removing an eyelash or eyebrow hair and placing it under a microscope.
The mites are transferred between hosts through contact of hair, eyebrows and of the sebaceous glands on the nose. Different species of animals host different species of demodex; and demodex is not contagious between different species.
In the vast majority of cases, the mites go unobserved, without any adverse symptoms, but in certain cases (usually related to a suppressed immune system, caused by stress or illness) mite populations can dramatically increase, resulting in a condition known as demodicosis, characterised by itching, inflammation and other skin disorders. Blepharitis (inflammation of the eyelids) can also be caused by Demodex mites. – wiki
Yuck. Let’s kill em. Awesome! I could have normal non itchy eyes again! I’m very excited about this.