Stye Treatment: Different Ways to Beat This Bacterial Infection

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  • To keep your condition from worsening, gently wash your eyelid with mild, chemical-free soap and water. You should also wash your hands thoroughly before touching your stye
  • As much as possible, refrain from wearing makeup and contact lenses while you have an active stye, since they may exacerbate your symptoms. If you’re using prescription contact lenses, temporarily replace them with eyeglasses while waiting for the infection to subside
  • You may be given over-the-counter painkillers and antibiotics as a part of your treatment. However, these are not really recommended since there’s not enough evidence to prove that they’re efficient in treating styes

A stye generally heals on its own without medical intervention. It usually takes three to four days before bursting, while the entire healing process may take seven to 10 days.1,2 However, sporting a sore bump on your eye for a week or more is far from reassuring, so you’re probably wondering if there’s anything that you can do to quicken its healing or at least lessen the severity of its symptoms. Fortunately, there’s a variety of treatment methods that can help you do just that.

How to Treat a Stye With Safe and Natural Remedies

There are  home remedies that may help quicken the healing process of a stye and provide your infected eyelid with some much-needed relief. Some of these safe and simple strategies include:3,4,5

Applying a warm compress over the eyelid: A warm compress not only helps ease pain and soreness, but may also draw the pus to a head. You simply need to wet a clean washcloth with warm water, squeeze it thoroughly and then gently hold it over your infected eye for 15 minutes.

If the compress cools, dip it in warm water again. Make sure that the temperature of the water is comfortable and not scalding. You can do this procedure three to four times a day to help the stye mature quickly.

Keeping your hands and eyelids clean: Dirt, dust and grime may exacerbate a stye or spread the bacterial infection to the area around it. To keep your condition from worsening, gently wash your eyelid with mild, chemical-free soap and water. You should also wash your hands thoroughly before touching your stye.

Avoiding use of contact lenses and makeup: As much as possible, refrain from wearing makeup and contact lenses while you have an active stye, since they may exacerbate your symptoms. If you're using prescription contact lenses, temporarily replace them with eyeglasses while waiting for the infection to subside.

There are also several ingredients from the kitchen that you can use to help soothe your infected eyelid, like cold cucumber slices and warm tea bags, which also provide antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties.

Other Treatment Methods for This Condition

If the home remedies above don’t work, your doctor may recommend other treatment options to remove the stye on your eye. Some of which include:6,7

Epilation of the affected eyelash: This type of treatment is used for external forms of a stye. It involves plucking the eyelash from the infected hair follicle, which may help drain the pus from the abscess. Although it may sound like a simple procedure that you can do on your own, it should only be carried out by a physician.

Incision and drainage: Commonly performed to remove a stye that didn't burst on its own, this procedure involves opening the stye using a sterile needle and then draining the pus manually. It's usually done under general anesthesia, especially for internal styes. Do not attempt to perform this yourself, since it should only be done by a physician.

Medications: You may be given over-the-counter painkillers and antibiotics as a part of your treatment. However, these are not really recommended since there's not enough evidence to prove that they're efficient in treating styes. Plus, they may cause a wide range of side effects that may be more severe than your eyelid infection.

Remember: Do Not Pop a Stye Like You Would a Pimple

A stye looks a lot like a pimple, which is why it can be very tempting to pop. However, popping a stye on your own may do more harm than good, since you may injure the infected eyelid or spread the infection to other parts of the eye, which may lead to serious complications. Allow your stye to rupture on its own. If it doesn’t, then you should seek medical attention instead of dealing with it by yourself.8

MORE ABOUT STYE

Stye: Introduction

What Is a Stye?

Stye Symptoms

Stye Causes

Stye Treatment

Stye Prevention

How to Get Rid of a Stye

Is a Stye Contagious?

How Long Do Styes Last?

Stye FAQ



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