What is a stye ?
A stye, also sometimes known as a chalazion, is a lump along the edge of the inside or outside of your eyelid that is the result of an oil gland becoming blocked or infected. Styes can be red, swollen, and painful, but fortunately they are rarely serious and typically resolve on their own without the need for medication in a few days to a couple weeks. Styes are a common eye ailment and affect people of any age, but some people are more prone to them than others.
What are the common Causes for sties?
Most styes are caused by an oil gland along your eyelid which became infected with the bacterium Staphylococcus aureus. This bacteria is present in everyone’s body, but if it gets into an oil gland on your eyelid it can cause styes. The bacteria invades the meibomium gland, causing internal styes, or the gland of Zeis, which causes external styes.
Your eyelid is lined with tiny gland ducts that produce an oily substance that lubricates your eye and helps prevent tears from evaporating. Sometimes this oil can become blocked in these glands. When that happens, your body mounts an immune response in order to clean out the blocked oil. This can result in a stye-like lump called a chalazion
If you are someone who regularly forgets to wash off your eye makeup at night, you may find yourself frequently suffering from styes. Makeup, dirt, and oil that is left on your eyelids can block glands and result in infection. Touching your eyes with unwashed hands can also spread bacteria to your eyelids. Always be sure to regularly wash your face and avoid touching your eyes unless your hands are clean.
Stress can be a common factor behind the development of a stye. When we are stressed, we tend to not take the best care of ourselves. You may not be washing your face as often as you usually do, and fatigue can cause you to rub your eyes more frequently. Both factors can contribute to spreading bacteria to your eye glands, causing styes. Additionally, stress can weaken our immune system and make us more susceptible to infections, including those that cause styes.
Our eyes naturally produce tears that wash away germs and dirt. Sometimes, though, we fail to produce enough tears. This can be a hereditary condition, or it can be caused by certain medications like decongestants. Staring at the computer for long hours can also result in dry eyes. When we don’t make enough tears to cleanse our eyes of impurities, styes can develop. Talk to your doctor about using eye drops if you suffer from styes as the result of dry eyes.
How to get rid of a stye – 14 Ways to get rid of a stye fast and naturally
1) Keep the Area Clean
Styes can be caused by exposing your eye to dust or makeup. Once you develop a stye, ensure you always keep the area clean. Wash your hands regularly with water and soap before touching your eyes. Diluted tear-free baby shampoos and some special eyelid scrubs also work great. Just mix the shampoo with warm water and use a clean washcloth or cotton swab to gently clean your eyelids every day or two.
2) Don’t Squeeze or Pop
You can be tempted to pop a stye to release the debris or pus, but squeezing it may cause more problems, making the situation even much worse. Avoid squeezing or popping the stye to prevent spreading the infection or even cause scarring.
3) Don’t Use Old Makeup or other People Makeup
Toss old makeup which can be breeding grounds for bacteria. Ensure you regularly wash your reusable brushes and replace any eyeshadow, liquid eyeliner, and mascara that have lasted for over 3 months. Do not share or use other peoples’ makeup to avoid spreading or getting styes. Also take note that:
- Applying makeup over a stye can irritate the eye and delay the healing process.
- You should not wear makeup when going to sleep, instead, clean it off using eye makeup remover then wash your face with warm water to rinse off the makeup remover.
Best of all, GO NATURAL!
4) Over-The-Counter Painkillers
Taking Acetaminophen (Tylenol) or Ibuprofen can help reduce symptoms like a painful stye. It is recommended to keenly follow the manufacturer’s instructions to make sure you are taking the right dosage.
5) Teabag Compress
Tea bags contain green tea that has several antibacterial properties that help reduce swelling and completely heal cure styes. Warm tea bags are more preferable. Drop a tea bag in warm water in a mug or glass of water. Leave the tea to steep for a minute then cool off the teabag and place it over your eye for about 10 minutes. For better results, use a different teabag for every eye.
6) Warm Washcloth
Another great way to cure styes is by using a warm washcloth. This method is quite similar to the teabag compress, but here you use a warm clean cloth. The warmth dissolves the pus and lets the stye to naturally drain. First, wet the washcloth with warm water then wring it until it is damp. Place the cloth over your eye and leave it for about 10 minutes. Repeat this process 3 to 4 times every day for better results.
You should definitely visit a doctor if your stye becomes more painful and large, or does not heal some days after beginning home treatment. At times sties need to be drained professionally. Your doctor may prescribe some painkillers or an antibiotic cream.
Natural Remedies for Styes
Cucumber is great home solution for sties and eye blisters. On the affected eyelids, place cucumber cuts to reduce pain and irritation. Another alternative to cucumber is the use of tomatoes. Just place tomato cuts over the affected areas.
Turmeric has anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties that help get rid of sties quickly. It can remove all infection-causing elements that can result to the condition. It is also effective in reducing inflammation.
In two separate cups of water, add 1 tablespoon of turmeric and boil it until the solution decreases significantly to half. Cool and strain the liquid through a clean cheese cloth. Use the solution to gently clean the stye 2 to 3 times a day for a week or 2.
You can also opt to mix 1 teaspoon of turmeric powder with warm milk in a cup. For faster healing, drink the mixture every day before going to sleep for a week.
Cloves work by relieving skin irritation and pain hence an effective treatment for sties. They also have antibacterial properties that help prevent eye infections from spreading.
In a glass of water, soak 5 or 6 cloves for about 10 minutes. Strain the water. Soak a clean cloth in the water and drain out the excess water. Put and hold the cloth on the area affected by sties for a few minutes. Follow this remedy 2 or 3 times a day for a few days.
Another common home remedy for sties is the potato. It has astringent properties that help reduce skin irritations and contract the tissues. Additionally, potatoes help reduce pain and inflammation.
Grate a potato (medium-size) then wrap it in a clean cheese cloth. Put the cheese cloth and leave it on the affected area for about 5 to 10 minutes. Use this remedy 2 or 3 times a day for 4 days to get better results.
11) Aloe Vera (Plant)
Aloe Vera is undisputedly a great treatment for sties because of its anti-inflammatory, antibacterial and soothing properties. It may help reduce inflammation, redness and swelling, and quicken the healing process too.
Take a leaf from the Aloe Vera plant a cut it open to extract its gel. Gently rub the juice on the infected eyelid and leave it for about 20 minutes to work its magic. Wash off the gel with lukewarm water afterwards. Repeat this treatment several times every day for 5 days.
You can also use a blend of chamomile tea and Aloe Vera juice. It works great!
Garlic is a popular natural treatment for curing sties. It has medicinal values effective in healing infections. Get rid of that eye stye by gently applying some fresh garlic juice over the affected area.
13)Tea Tree Oil
This essential oil extracted from tea tree leaves is renowned for its powerful ability to heal wounds, anti-inflammatory actions and antiseptic properties. It has been used as an active ingredient in various home remedies. Tea tree oil can be applied topically to cure skin issues – particularly sties.
In a pot, place tea tree leaves and add enough water to completely cover the leaves. Boil the water to steam the leaves. Allow the liquid to cool down and then collect the oil produced into a separate glass or bottle. Using a clean cotton swab or cloth, apply the oil over the stye. Repeat this process regularly until you get relief.
14) Coriander Seeds
Need something to make you feel much better in a few days? Coriander seeds are a reliable traditional home remedy for sties has anti-inflammatory properties that help reduce swelling, pain and redness.
In a cup of water, put 1 teaspoon of coriander seeds and then bring it to boil. Remove from heat to allow the water to cool off. Strain and use the water to gently wash the infected eye area. Do this 2 or 3 times a day until you heal.
Coriander leaves have quite the similar healing properties as the seeds.