Have you ever gotten a little bump on your eyelid? If so, you probably know what a stye is. This condition happens to many people at different times in their life. It can be incredibly uncomfortable or hardly even noticeable. Here are a couple things that you need to know about styes so that you can take care of yourself.
What Is A Stye?
A stye is a blocked gland on your eyelid. Usually the gland will become blocked from oil in the eye, make up, or even an ingrown eyelash. There are two different kinds of styes. The first is called a hordeolum. This is the type of stye that forms on the bottom of the lid. It generally has a small amount of waxy oil that is secreted from the stye. These styes can be pretty harmless and you might not even notice it.
The second type is called a chalazion. This is a little more serious, since it can form either on the outside or inside of the eyelid. This type of stye also secretes some oil, but since it is right by the eye it can cause the individual to feel like they have dry eye. Many people notice that they have one eye that is incredibly drier than the other.
What Causes A Stye?
Usually a stye is caused from some sort of foreign material in the eye. For instance you might get some makeup or dirt around the eye that blocks the gland so that it cannot drain properly. Then the gland begins to swell and create a small bump. In other instances, oil on someone's face could obstruct the eye from draining properly so it causes a stye to form. Generally is you try to wash your face and eyes well at night you should be able to avoid a stye. However, in some cases a stye forms regardless of good hygiene.
How To Care For A Stye
If you have a stye there are a couple of things you can do.
- Massage the area lightly. This will help to break up the blockage in the gland so that it can drain properly.
- Hold a warm compress to the eye a couple times a day. The heat from the warm compress will help to drain the stye.
- Use medicated eye drops. This will kill any bacteria in the eye so that it can heal properly.
- Avoid wearing contacts or makeup until the stye has healed.
By understanding what a stye is and consulting with your optometrist you can properly care for your eyes.