Styes and chalazias are bumps within or alongside the perimeters of the eyelids. They can cause discomfort or annoyance but rarely serious. Most settle on their own without requiring treatment.
- A stye is an infection that results to a red, tender lump on the eyelid, usually along the edges. Once it develops within the eyelid, it is known as an internal hordeolum.
- A chalazion is a bump in the eyelid. It appears the same as a stye but bigger and does not trigger any pain.
What are the possible causes of styes and chalazias?
Styes are brought about by a bacterial infection. In most instances, the bacteria grow in the follicle of an eyelash. A chalazion develops once an oil gland in the eyelid is clogged.
What are the indications?
A stye typically forms as a reddened lump that looks like a pimple along the perimeters of the eyelid.
- As it grows, the eyelid becomes painful and swollen and the eye might even water.
- In most cases, it becomes swollen for about 3 days before rupturing and draining.
- It usually heals in around a week.
A chalazion starts as a rigid lump or cyst beneath the skin of the eyelid.
- This does not cause any pain or discomfort.
- Grows in a slower manner than styes but it if grows large enough, it can disrupt vision.
- The swelling and inflammation can spread to the adjacent eye area
- It usually settles in a few months without treatment.
Treatment at home is enough for styes and chalazias.
- Place a moist, warm compress for 5-10 minutes at 3-6 times throughout the day. This can promote faster healing of the area as well as opening blocked pores to allow drainage and start the healing process.
- Utilize over-the-counter treatment such as ointments, solutions or medicated pads.
- Avoid using eye makeup or contact lenses until the area has healed.
- Allow the styes or chalazias to open on their own. It is not recommended to squeeze or open them.
If a stye does not settle with home treatment, a doctor must be consulted. There might be a need to use an antibiotic eye ointment or drops. In case styes or chalazias grow excessively large, the doctor will pierce them to allow drainage and healing.