The eyelash mite (Demodex folliculitis) or Demodex mite is a parasite found in the hair roots of your face.
It is can be found in the nose, cheeks and most especially the eyelash area hence it’s also called the eyelash mite.
What Are Demodex Mites (Eyelash Mites)
Demodex is a genus of termites that inhabit the skin, particularly in the oil glands and the hair roots. Lots of species of demodex mites exist, and they might use a range of mammals as hosts, including animals and humans.
The life cycle of these eyelash termites is short– so short, in fact, that their bodies are not even equipped with organs for eliminating waste products.
Eyelash termites live to eat bacteria from our skin, mate, lay eggs, and after that die within two weeks of being hatched. Often, both humans and their four-legged buddies can live peaceably with each other; the demodex mites often live in and around eyelashes, for instance, without causing any inflammation at all.
Nevertheless, when their numbers grow too high and an infestation starts, many undesirable side effects may be experienced by the host.
What Are The Reasons For Eyelash Mites?
Lack of health is not the main reason for having mites in eyelashes. However, there might be a connection between eyelash termites and mascara as women who wear a lot of mascara have the tendency to have more demodex mites on their eyelashes. In addition, sharing mascara can also move the termites between eyelashes.
Falling asleep with your makeup might also be a cause for the increased levels of the eyelash mites.
Warning Signs Of Eyelash Mite Infestation
Eyelash mites are thought to be the culprits responsible for causing rosacea flare-ups and bouts of fungal skin infections, such as ringworm.
This occurs when an excess of mites are living on the skin, laying too many eggs within oil glands and leaving behind their corpses to cause blocking of the pores, thus preventing the skin’s natural self-sloughing abilities. Thus, Demodex mite (eyelash mite) problem can manifest in:
- Flushing and swelling of the skin
- Stopped up pores (acne and blackheads)
- Rash-like appearance to the infested skin
- Intense itching and burning sensations
- Hair loss
These symptoms can be exceptionally unpleasant to live with– however the bright side is, that you don’t have to!
Here is a short video about the eyelash termites (scroll down to find how to naturally get rid of eyelash mite infestation).
Natural Treatments To Get Rid Of Eyelash Mites
There are natural treatment choices available to treat Demodex mite problem and prevent future reoccurrences of infestation, a lot of which are backed by empirical research. Let’s talk about a few of these natural home remedies for eliminating eyelash termites and how to use them in case you or someone in your home develops a Demodex mite infestation.
Baby Shampoo– For The Eye Area
The doctors from the video in this article advise to wash the eyes with a baby shampoo diluted with equal amount of water twice a day in order to get rid of the eyelash termites.
The only issue with baby shampoo is that a few of them contain additives that can really promote skin irritation, so it’s best to use natural shampoo that is suitable for delicate skin.
Castor oil has many health benefits and one of them is its antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory properties. Castor oil can help to kill off skin infections that can trigger eyelash loss. For example, Dr. Weil says that eyelash loss can occur because of an eyelid infection or mite infection.
The journal ISRN Pharmacology reported that castor oil contains antimicrobial properties and is useful in treating numerous skin infections. The report also notes that castor oil seed extracts are useful for hair loss and reducing inflammation.
To apply castor oil to your eyelashes before going to bed, wash your face and remove any makeup, mascara, and eyeliner with a mild makeup remover. Put a small amount of cold pressed organic castor oil on the end of an eyeliner brush. Thoroughly use the castor oil to the base of your eyelashes. Keep in mind, that castor oil is relatively thick, and you will just need a small amount on each eyelid.
You need to also avoid getting castor oil into your eye as it can cause irritation. Leave overnight for best results. In the morning, carefully remove the castor oil using a makeup remover. Repeat daily for a number of days.
Other treatments for demodex mites
Essential note— The essential oils included in the following section must not be used in areas where it can come into contact with the eyes. If your Demodex mite infection is in the eyelid or eyelash area, please do not use essential oils as a topical treatment. They are suitable if the mites affect your face, such as nose or cheeks, but not the eye area.
Tea tree oil
Tea tree oil has been proven to be one of the most effective natural treatments against eyelash mites, with survival time stretching no further than 15 minutes when pure tea tree oil is used. Tea tree oil is also one of the best solutions for eliminating scabies termites.
To use the healing properties of tea tree oil to your advantage (and the Demodex mites’ detriment), add a few drops of tea tree oil to a full bottle of shampoo or liquid soap and clean as usual.
If you prefer a method where you do not need to do any mixing or measuring, numerous products including tea tree oil are offered online and in stores, such as bar soap, laundry detergent and hair products.
Camphor oil is another effective way of ridding oneself of eyelash mite infestation. Camphor oil is made by distilling the bark and wood of the camphor tree.
According to a research, treatment of human facial demodicidosis with freshly prepared camphor oil with or without glycerol dilutions gave complete cure with concentrations of 100%, 75% and 50%. Incomplete cure however marked drop in infestation density was accomplished with diluted camphor oil at concentrations of 25-20%. Camphor oil application showed to be safe without any negative effects.
Oregano oil is one of the best effective antibiotics that do not need a prescription. Oregano oil can be detrimental to eyelash mites also. Due to the fact that oregano oil is very concentrated, mix a few drops of oregano oil with a tablespoon of carrier oil such as olive oil or coconut oil and apply to the afflicted area two times a day.
Caraway oil was found by researchers to be just as effective as tea tree oil in removing Demodex mite infestation. Caraway oil may be used topically on the skin in similar way as tea tree and oregano oils, where a few drops are added to existing shampoo, soap, or detergents.
Dill oil is made from seeds and other parts of the dill plant and it is extremely effective for treating eyelash mite infestation. To treat it, put no more than two drops into hair treatment products, facial cleansers, or laundry products and use as normal. Existing mites will gradually die off, and use of the oil will prevent new infestations from taking place.
Olive leaf extract
Olive leaf extract has fantastic health benefits. Olive leaf can be bought as an extract in health stores or online. You can buy olive leaf extract in a liquid form or as a dried powder in pills. Always make sure the extract is made from natural olive leaves to ensure it’s pesticide free.
Take the extract as directed, making sure to take a two-day break per five days of treatment. After two weeks, you should see a significant improvement of the affected area, with health and clarity returning to the previously infested skin.
Clove oil is one of the best essential oil for eczema. It is an incredible natural home remedy that works in treating myriad ailments– and Demodex infestation is no exception. Mix a few drops of clove oil with a tablespoon of carrier oil such as coconut oil and apply to the afflicted area.
Sulfur is another anti-Demodex treatment that some people find really effective. Sulfur can be poisonous in large quantities, however one healthy and natural way to use its benefits in small quantities is by consuming foods containing sulfur, such as onion, garlic and eggs– especially the yolks. Another alternative is to use topical creams which contain sulfur.