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What is an Eye Stye? - Bard Optical

What is an Eye Stye?

Eye With a Stye

An eye stye closely resembles a pimple on your eyelid.


More specifically, a stye is when the eyelid becomes inflamed near the eyelash.


Styes can be very painful because of their location. As they swell, they can sometimes affect the entire eyelid.


Styes come in two forms. The first is an external hordeolum, which begins at the base of your eyelash and looks like a pimple. The other is an internal hordeolum, which is caused by an infection in the eyelid.


Regardless of the type, the infected eyelid is likely red and tender to the touch. Additionally, the eye may be sore and scratchy.


What Causes A Stye?

Styes are caused by bacterial infections.


Sometimes, styes develop when bacteria from the nose are transferred to the eye. Such an example is when you rub your nose, and then your eye.


Other times, bacteria that live on your eyelid block an oil duct and inflame the eyelid.


Another way to get a stye is when germs and dead skin cells get trapped on the edge of your eyelid.


What Are The Symptoms Of A Stye?

You can usually tell if you have a stye if you:

  • Have a painful red bump on your eyelid near your eyelashes.
  • Have a small pus spot at the center of the bump.
  • Feel like you have something in your eye.
  • Have a scratchy feeling in your eye.
  • Are sensitive to light.
  • Notice crustiness along your eyelid.
  • Develop tears in the affected eye.


How Long Do Styes Last?

Most styes will go away after a few days.


Who Is At Risk For Getting A Stye?

Anyone can get a stye, but some people are more susceptible than others. These are people who have:

  • Blepharitis, a common condition that involves inflamed eyelids.
  • Previously had a stye or chalazion—a benign bump along the eyelid.
  • A skin condition such as acne rosacea (which causes red, pus-filled bumps on the face) or seborrheic dermatitis (which scaly patches and red skin on the scalp).
  • Diabetes.

Additionally, styes are contagious. However, everyone has the bacteria required to produce a stye. Keep your hands and face clean, and avoid sharing of towels, bed sheets, or anything else that makes contact with the face.


How Do You Get Rid Of A Stye?

Resist the temptation to pop your stye.


Instead, keep your eyes clean. This includes not wearing eye makeup until the stye disappears.


Another treatment method is to apply a warm, moist compress to the affected eye. This compress encourages the stye to open up, draining and healing on its own.


Additional treatments for stubborn styes include antibiotics, steroid shots, and even surgery.


If you’re experiencing a troublesome stye on your eye, contact us today to schedule an appointment to have it looked at.


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