An ingrown eyelash, also known as trichiasis, is a potentially dangerous but very treatable condition where a lash or lashes are located on the eyelid in such a way that they come into contact with the surface of the eye. Left untreated or in chronic cases the resulting irritation can cause permanent damage to the eye. There is no home treatment for trichiasis. If you feel you are suffering from this condition see a doctor, preferably an ophthalmologist (eye doctor), right away. Below are some causes of ingrown eyelashes as well as treatment options available through your doctor.
Remove the hair with forceps to relieve the problem. While simple in nature, this is a procedure that should not be attempted at home. Any misstep could cause further damage to the eye and even blindness.
Use laser removal of the hair or hairs for a chronic condition. The Society for Clinical and Medical Hair Removal provides a background of electrolysis as it is commonly used for unwanted body hair. Interestingly enough, the treatment of ingrown eyelashes with lasers actually predates and led to the more common aesthetic treatments.
Freeze the hair follicles with careful application of cryogenic gas, which is a gas kept in liquid state at very low temperatures. Descriptions of early studies of this treatment are well documented by the British Journal of Ophthalmology and now high tech equipment to administer this process is available to your doctor.
According to the Merck Manuals Online Medical Dictionary, ingrown lashes are usually a random occurrence and not chronic in nature, much like an ingrown fingernail. Trichiasis can also result from a pre-existing eye condition such as eye trauma, or congenital defects in the eyelid or lashes that cause the lashes to come into contact with the eye. The appropriate treatment for ingrown lashes depend on the nature of the occurrence.
This article is not meant to provide diagnosis of any condition or advocation of any treatment. If you have an eye injury or condition consult a physician immediately and do not try to treat it yourself as you may cause further damage to your eye and cause blindness.