– Ed

Styes do not pose a serious threat to ocular health and will usually heal spontaneously within a week or so. However, they can cause discomfort and be unsightly. Here are some things you can do to reduce discomfort, swelling and get rid of the stye quicker.

What causes a stye?

It is not always possible to identify the cause of a stye, but they are more common in people with blepharitis (eye lid inflammation) and rosacea. People with rosacea have facial redness and swollen bumps under the skin.

Keep Your Eyelids Clean

The first thing you should do when you develop a stye, is cleanse your eyelids.

You can use diluted tear-free baby shampoo on a cotton ball, washcloth, or makeup remover pad. Then rinse your eyelids with warm water and gently pat them dry. Be sure to wash your hands before and after touching the stye, and don’t share your towels or washcloths with others.
A pre-moistened eyelid cleansing pad is another option. You can find these non-prescription items in most pharmacies.

Stop wearing eye makeup when you have a stye, because covering up a stye can delay the healing process.

Also, discard old makeup or applicators that could be contaminated. Discontinue contact lens wear until your stye heals completely.

Apply warm, moist compresses

You can speed up the healing process by applying warm compresses for 10 to 15 minutes, three or four times a day. Some people use teabags for this purpose, but a basic clean washcloth dipped in warm (not hot) water will do the trick and is easy to prepare. Wring the cloth so that it’s not dripping, then place it over your closed eyes. The goal of this therapy is to bring the stye to a head, as is the case with a pimple. Whatever you do, don’t get anxious and try to pop a stye! The warmth from the cloth often will allow the stye to open, drain and heal on its own, without causing trauma to the eyelid or possibly spreading an infection by squeezing it.

Ease the discomfort

Over-the-counter painkillers won’t enhance healing, but these medications may ease discomfort if a stye is particularly bothersome. An ophthalmologist can also address pain associated with styes, by surgically opening a large stye to relieve discomfort and prevent a serious infection.

Share this on Facebook: