Treatment for Styes

By Gordon Wong, OD on November 12, 2018

A woman with a styeHere at Gordon Wong Eye Designs & Optometry, we can do more than just provide corrective lenses and offer insight into the treatment of various vision conditions. The teams at our Del Mar and La Jolla, CA offices can help diagnose and treat various eye conditions, even ones that you may not expect.

For instance, styes are a common issue people face, though they affect the eyelids rather than a person’s vision per se. Let’s take a moment to consider the basics of styes and how they can be treated.

What Is a Stye?

A stye is a tender red bump that forms on the eyelid. It appears like a pimple, and it can sometimes be sore. Styes are the result of glands near the base of the eyelashes becoming clogged and irritated. They tend to affect just one eyelid, but it is possible for a stye to form on both eyelids.

Signs and Symptoms of Styes

The most common symptoms of a stye are as follows:

  • A red bump along the eyelid
  • Sensitivity to bright light
  • Watery eyes
  • Itchiness around the eyes
  • Crust forming along the eyelid

Do Not Try to Pop the Stye Yourself

If you do notice a stye, do NOT try to pop it yourself. This can be a very painful action, and it can lead to infection, discomfort, and other problems. With proper at-home care, the stye should disappear on its own.

At-Home Treatment for Styes

To treat a stye, consider the following steps:

  • Place a clean washcloth soaked in warm water on the eye with the stye. Leave the washcloth in place for up to 10 minutes, and repeat several times each day. You can gently massage the washcloth while it is on your eye.
  • Soak a cotton swab in diluted no-tears baby shampoo. Gently clean your eyelid with the cotton swab once or twice each day.
  • Keep your face and eyes clean throughout the day, and carefully remove any crusts that form along the eyelid.
  • Avoid wearing contact lenses while the stye is present. This helps relieve discomfort and prevent eye infection.
  • Avoid wearing all eye makeup until the stye has gone away.
  • Wash your hands thoroughly throughout the day.

How Long Does a Stye Last?

Typically, a stye lasts for about 7 days to 10 days with proper at-home treatment. Most people will notice the stye begin to improve by the third day of at-home care. Continue to focus on hygiene and cleanliness until the stye shrinks, fades, and/or bursts on its own.

When Professional Treatment Is Needed

If your stye does not improve after a few days, it’s a good idea for you to contact an eye care professional about the matter. They will usually check the stye and determine if professional drainage is necessary. They may also provide you with an antibiotic cream to help address the stye itself if draining the stye is not ideal.

Learn More About Treating Styes

For more information about treating styes and improving your overall vision and eye health, be sure to contact Gordon Wong Eye Designs & Optometry. We are here to help. You can reach us in La Jolla by phone at (858) 454-4699.

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La Jolla Office

7841 Fay Ave
La Jolla, CA 92037

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