If you notice a red bump on your eyelid that is tender to the touch, you may be developing a stye.
What is a stye?
A stye is a painful red bump on the edge of your eyelid, usually at the base of an eyelash. It occurs when a gland becomes infected by bacteria. You can often see a small yellowish spot on the stye where pus has collected. Styes can develop on the upper or lower eyelids of both children and adults.
Styes develop gradually, and most of them will go away on their own.
However, if a stye lasts for over a week, interferes with your vision, or continues to get worse, you should come in to see our doctors. They will carefully examine your eye and may prescribe medication to help clear the infection and reduce inflammation.
Styes can be painful.
Here are some home care tips to speed healing:
- Warm compresses will help you to feel more comfortable and reduce swelling. Rinse a clean washcloth with warm water. Wring out the excess water and lay it across your eyes for 10 to 15 minutes 4 times a day.
- Keep your eyelids clean. Using a cotton ball or gauze, clean your eyelids with a mixture of warm water and baby shampoo.
- Don’t wear eye makeup. If you cover up a stye, you could slow healing. After your eye has healed, replace all makeup that may be contaminated.
- Take a break from contacts. Wear your glasses until the stye is gone.
- Styes are contagious. Keep your hands clean and don’t share washcloths or towels with others.
How do I keep styes from recurring?
Keeping your eyelids clean is the best way to prevent styes. Be sure to remove ALL makeup before you go to bed each night.
Cleanse your eyelids in the morning as well to keep the lid margins clear. Wash away those overnight crusties!
Have a question for our eye care experts?
Our blog presents a great opportunity for us to share our expertise. If you have a general question about eye care or vision, let us know, we are happy to answer. If you have a specific concern about the health of your vision, please make an appointment for an exam.
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