Demodex mites are small, eight-legged bugs that live in the pores of our facial skin. They can cause a lot of pain and discomfort, such as itching, redness, burning. Demodex mites have been linked to some cases of blepharitis, or eyelid inflammation. This happens when the mites burrow deeply into eyelash roots and feast on sebum (facial oils) as well as the nutrients in follicle cells.
How Common Are They?
Around half of all adults have Demodex mites living in their skin, while over 2/3 of people over 60 years old have an infestation of mites. Some studies have indicated that all people over 18 have at least one species of the Demodex mites on their bodies and in their pores. For most people, it’s not a question of if you have them, but rather how dense their population has become.
We don’t yet know exactly why Demodex mites prefer some people’s skin over others, however we do know that they are transferred through direct skin contact with someone who is already infested. Due to the nature in which the mites transfer between hosts, it is pretty safe to say that you have probably come into contact with people who have an infestation of Demodex mites and are at risk of having an infestation yourself.
When Do They Become a Problem?
People suffering from blepharitis tend to see symptoms like eyelid thickening, redness of the eyes, itching, and a gritty irritation. These symptoms are easily mistaken for dry eye or allergies, while they are actually being caused by the Demodex mites burrowing into your pores. The mites feed on the natural oils our bodies produce and since they can’t release their feces, they grow larger and larger until they die and spread harmful bacteria into your pores.
What Do I Do About Them?
Studies have shown that tea tree oil is very effective in getting rid of Demodex mites. Our eyes are very sensitive and can have a negative reaction to an excess of tea tree oil and therefore it is very important to use a product that has been developed specifically with this in mind. Blephadex eye wipes have the perfect balance of soothing, medicating oils to tackle your mite problem. Want to find out more about how to get relief from your symptoms? Click here to learn more.