Blog post by: Eye Physicians of Long Beach

When it comes to maintaining the health of our eyes conditions such as cataract, glaucoma, macular degeneration and diabetes frequently receive the most attention. What most people overlook is that front surface of the eyeball and cornea must remain moist to function properly. Our eyelids protect the surface of the eye and ensure that the eye remains lubricated and comfortable. Occasionally, the very eyelid that is supposed to protect our eye fails us and can cause extreme discomfort and even vision loss.

Eli Chang, MD., nationally renown specialist in plastic surgery of the eyelids and Assistant Professor of Ophthalmology at the Doheny Eye Institute of USC offers the following tips to maintain the health of our eyelids.

10% of all skin cancers occur on the eyelids. Have all lumps and bumps examined.

Lashes growing the wrong direction and rubbing against the eye can cause severe damage and should be permanently removed.

Eyelids can turn inwards or outwards as we age causing damage to the surface of your eye and should be repaired.

Skin conditions (rosacea, psoriasis, eczema, etc) can affect the skin on your eyelids just like any other part of your body.

Drooping eyelids can severely impair your peripheral vision resulting in the driver failing to react to a hazard coming from the driver’s far left or far right, failing to heed a stop light suspended over an intersection, weaving while negotiating a curve, and/or driving too close to parked cars.

Constant tearing can be a symptom of an eyelid or tear duct problem that should be investigated.

Ignoring eyelid problems says Dr. Chang, may have substantial consequences beyond just the cosmetic appearance of a drooping or sagging eyelid. If you think you — or a relative — are having eyelid problems, consult your physician.