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Demodex Blepharitis FAQ

What is Demodex Blepharitis?

Demodex blepharitis is a common eyelid disorder caused by an overgrowth of Demodex mites, specifically Demodex folliculorum. These microscopic mites are naturally found in small numbers in human hair follicles and sebaceous glands, but their overpopulation can lead to various eye-related issues, including blepharitis.

What are the Symptoms of Demodex Blepharitis?

Symptoms of Demodex blepharitis can vary from mild to severe and may include:

  • Itching and Irritation: Patients may experience persistent itching along the eyelid margins.
  • Redness: Inflammation of the eyelids can lead to redness, especially along the edges.
  • Burning Sensation: Patients might feel a burning or stinging sensation in the eyes, particularly in the morning.
  • Crusting and Flaking: Accumulation of debris and oily secretions at the base of the eyelashes can lead to crust formation and flaking.
  • Eyelash Loss: Severe infestations can cause eyelash loss or thinning.
  • Dry Eyes: Demodex mites can disrupt the normal functioning of the meibomian glands, leading to dry eye symptoms.

How is Demodex Blepharitis Diagnosed?

Diagnosis of Demodex blepharitis typically involves a comprehensive eye examination by an eye care professional. The presence of cylindrical dandruff (small, cylindrical particles at the base of the eyelashes made up of mite waste products and eggs) and microscopic examination of epilated eyelashes for Demodex mites can confirm the diagnosis.

Is Demodex Blepharitis Contagious?

Demodex blepharitis is not considered contagious in the conventional sense, as Demodex mites are part of the normal human microbiota. However, the transfer of mites from one person to another through close contact, such as sharing towels or pillows, is possible but rare.

What are the Possible Treatments for Demodex Blepharitis?

    • Eyelid Hygiene: Regular and thorough eyelid hygiene is crucial for managing Demodex blepharitis. This involves daily cleansing of the eyelids using gentle cleansers or commercially available eyelid scrubs to remove excess oils, debris, and mites.
    • Xdemvy:FDA approved eye drops that enter the follicle and target the mites. Used twice daily for six weeks.   
    • Low Level Laser Therapy: Specially designed LED lights gently warm up the eyelids, causing the meibomian glands to unclog and release oils. Additionally, these lights boost cellular function, helping alleviate dryness longer term. Additionally, these lights specifically target the mites, killing any live demodex in the follicle. No side effects or discomfort. Safe, non-invasive. 15 minutes per session. Multiple sessions needed for eradication. Not covered by insurance. 

Is Demodex Blepharitis Curable?

While Demodex blepharitis cannot be cured permanently, it can be effectively managed with proper eyelid hygiene and appropriate treatment measures. Consistent adherence to prescribed treatments and preventive measures can help control symptoms and minimize flare-ups over time.


Demodex blepharitis is a common eyelid condition caused by an overgrowth of Demodex mites. Understanding the symptoms, diagnosis, and treatment options is crucial for effective management. With proper eyelid hygiene and appropriate medical interventions, individuals with Demodex blepharitis can experience significant relief from their symptoms and improve their overall eye health. If you suspect you have Demodex blepharitis, it is essential to consult an eye care professional for a proper diagnosis and tailored treatment plan.