HOW TO GET RID OF A STYE



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How To Get Rid of Styes

In this post, I want to discuss what exactly a stye is and how to treat it. The aim is to give you the knowledge you need to understand how to get rid of styes and how to prevent them reoccurring in the future.

What is a stye

A stye is an inflamed growth or cyst on the eyelid. It is caused by an infection of the eyelash follicles or sebaceous glands (oil glands) within the eyelid. Most people suffer from a stye at some point in their lives, but for a few people, they just keep coming back again and again or take a long time to disappear!

Internal and External

A stye is either external or internal

External Stys are abscesses that appear on the outside of the eyelid and usually affect the eyelash follicles. The white head in the centre of the stye is often easy to see because it points outwards. External styes tend to be more common than internal styes.

Internal styes are lumps that appear within the eyelid, with the head pointing inwards towards the eyeball. They usually indicate an infected meibomian gland.

Symptoms

The main symptoms are pain or discomfort, redness and swelling or inflammation of the eyelid. It often feels as though you have something in your eye, which can lead to you rubbing it - which, in turn leads to increased soreness and inflammation.

A stye may also cause your eyes to water.

Many styes (although, not all) are visible as a bump or lump on either the upper or lower eyelid. Some styes may exhibit a yellow/white head in the centre, similar to a pimple.

Internal and External

A stye is either external or internal

External Stys are abscesses that appear on the outside of the eyelid and usually affect the eyelash follicles. The white head in the centre of the stye is often easy to see because it points outwards. External styes tend to be more common than internal styes.

Internal styes are lumps that appear within the eyelid, with the head pointing inwards towards the eyeball. They usually indicate an infected meibomian gland.

Chalazia

Chalazia (singular: chalazion) are similar in appearance to styes, however they are usually painless and can remain on the eyelid for many months (styes usually heal within a couple of weeks). If you’ve had a stye for a long time, you should get it checked by your doctor because it may actually be a chalazion.

Causes

90% of styes are caused by staphylococcus bacteria, which usually lives harmlessly inside the nose.

The bacteria is usually transmitted by touching the eyes after touching somewhere that the bacteria is present (such as the nose).

Having been transported to the eye area, the bacteria must then find a way to get underneath the skin to develop into a stye. Most of the time, the body’s natural defences do a fine job of preventing this but if there is a break in the skin or a blocked gland around the eye, a stye can quickly form.

People with blepharitis (a disease which makes the eyes vulnerable to infection) are also more likely to get styes. 

Get Rid of Styes the Fast Way

Without any interaction, the body can usually heal a stye within a week to ten days.

You can reduce the healing time to just a few days by using a warm compress.

Soak a hand towel in hot water, wring out any excess water and hold it firmly against your eye for five to ten minutes. Repeat this procedure 3 or 4 times a day.

The warmth and moisture will encourage the stye to come to a head, burst and release any pus.

Prevention

To prevent styes, you may need to maintain a higher-than-usual degree of personal hygiene.

Make sure you keep your eyes clean by washing them with warm water twice a day. Adding a tiny drop of Johnson’s Baby Shampoo can also help.

Whilst you have a stye, it’s a good idea to avoid using mascara, eye shadow and other eye make-up. Never, ever share eye make-up with someone else as this is an easy way to transfer bacteria to your eyelid.

Further Info

If a sty is not cured in a few weeks, speak to your doctor who may be able to prescribe you antibiotics or refer you to an ophthalmologist for eye surgery.

More information on how to get rid of a stye can be found on my dedicated website.

You may also find some useful information on my Getting Rid of a Stye Blog.