What Are Meibomian Glands?
Meibomian glands are the oil producing glands found in the upper and lower eyelids. Healthy meibomian glands are absolutely vital to a healthy tear film.
Secretions from these glands comprise the lipid (oily) layer of the tear film which is crucial in preventing evaporation of the tears, and aiding clear vision.
What Is MGD?
Failure of the glands to produce or secrete oil – due to blockage, will affect the quality of the tear film, which in turn will create dry eye, even in people whose other dry eye tests results appear normal.
Promoting good meibomian gland health is often the number one task of the chronic (persistent) dry eye patient.
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MGD is common but unfortunately it often goes undiagnosed. Even when diagnosed it is often not treated effectively.
Continued Compliance With A Lid Regime Is Important Long Term To Prevent Recurrence Of This Chronic Condition.
Below a simple technique is outlined which is effective for mild to moderate MGD:
- 1. Dip a clean facecloth into comfortably hot clean water.
- 2. Place the rolled facecloth over your closed eyes, for 15 seconds, or until the heat starts to fade. This will help melt the blocked oil glands.
- 3. Repeat the process three times.
- 4. At the third attempt apply a gentle massage to the outer rim of the lids, through the face cloth. This helps to remove the plugs which may be blocking the opening of the glands at the lid surface.
- 5. Gently rinse with clean water, or your optometrist may recommend a lid cleansing solution such as Lid Care Wipes (Ciba Vision). Carry out these procedures night and morning, or as instructed. Perseverance is essential.