It can be both embarrassing and painful to have an eye stye show up on your eyelid. This eye disease can cause discomfort and pain, and many people don’t want to be seen in public with the big bump that is present. To learn how to care for a stye, you first need to understand what causes this problem and how it develops.
Here at Village Eyecare, we are committed to your eye health. Our team is working hard to help you learn more about protecting your vision.
What is an Eye Stye?
A stye develops when an oil gland becomes infected. These glands are located at the edges of the eyelid. When a stye develops, the gland and surrounding tissue will start to swell up and become tender to the touch. A stye looks like a pimple on the eyelid and can grow on the outside or inside of the lid.
These are common symptoms of eye stye:
- Localized pain
- Increase in tear production
- Bump on the eye
If it looks like there is a pimple on your eye or your eyelid is swelling up, then it is likely caused by a stye. Sometimes, only the local area is swollen, but some people experience swelling on the entire eyelid. Even though the eyelid is swelling, styes don’t typically cause vision problems.
Eye Stye Complications
The longer a stye is present, the higher the risk of complications. It could potentially turn into a chalazion, which is a hard bump on the eye lid. When scar tissue forms, it could result in a long-term blemish that doesn’t go away. This complication needs to be treated by a Chicago optometrist. Treatments might include lancing to drain the infection or a steroid injection to decrease the swelling.
What Causes Eye Styes?
How do you get an eye stye? Understanding the underlying causes can help to prevent the common causes of eye styes. This proactive treatment is essential if you suffer from recurring eye styes.
The staphylococcal bacteria is usually the cause of eye styes. The bacteria causes an infection in the eyelid gland, and then the area swells up when the body fights the infection. This bacteria is found in the nose of most people and can be easily transferred by touching the nose and then the eye. For example, if you rub your nose and then touch your eye without washing your hands, then you might transfer the bacteria to your eye.
Another cause of eye styes could be the use of makeup. If you get a stye, then it is best to avoid makeup until the stye heals. Also, replace your makeup to avoid re-infecting the eye. You should discontinue the use of contact lenses until the stye heals.
Sometimes, the bacteria could be picked up from other surfaces and then passed to your eye. The best thing that you can do is wash your hands frequently and avoid touching your eyes when possible.
Most people have the bacteria in their body. So you have the risk of developing eye styes at any age, even without outside contamination. If you have a stye, then it is important that you are careful to avoid spreading the infection to other people. Keep your hands clean and avoid sharing bedsheets, towels, washcloths, and pillowcases.
What to Do for a Stye
If you are wondering what to do about a stye, the best thing that you can do is schedule an exam with an experienced eye doctor in Chicago. Your optometrist can help you learn how to care for a stye to speed up the healing process.
Keep in mind that the treatment might be slightly different for a single stye compared to recurring styes. Talk to your eye doctor if you get styes on a regular basis.
Can You Pop a Stye?
Even though the stye might look like a pimple, don’t be fooled into asking if you should pop a stye. The top rule for eye stye treatment is to let it heal naturally without spreading an infection. Can a stye pop? In some situations, yes… it is possible to pop a stye. But, you could cause additional damage and slow down the healing process if you pop the stye. Squeezing the infection could cause a serious eye infection.
Never, ever pop a stye like a pimple. It is best to let the stye rupture without forcing it. A stye on the inside of the eyelid might not rupture on its own, so it might be necessary to have your eye doctor drain it.
How to Heal an Eye Stye
Most eye styes will heal on their own in a few days, and there are treatments that can be used to speed up this healing process. Most Chicago optometrists will suggest that you use a hot compress three or four times per day. This compress can be applied for 10 or 15 minutes at a time.
The heat is a beneficial treatment for an eye stye because it brings the infection to a head and helps to relieve the pain. If you need additional, eye stye pain relief, then you might take over-the-counter pain medications. These medications can be beneficial to reduce the pain and decrease inflammation at the same time.
In the situation where you get repeated styes in the same eye, your eye doctor might suggest that you use pre-moistened eye cleaning pads daily. Another option is the application of a prescription antibiotic ointment that prevents recurrence of eye styes.
If you have any questions about a bump on your eye, then you need to contact an eye doctor for stye treatment. Here at Village Eyecare, we offer four convenient locations that you can visit. Call our office to schedule an appointment so that you can learn about the best treatment options to protect your eyes. Call anytime if you have questions or you would like to schedule an appointment with our experienced team.