What is a Stye, and How to Deal With Them

A stye or hordeolum is a condition when a painful, pimple-like rash or boil grows on the edge of the eyelid. They are generally caused by a bacterial infection and usually only appear on one of the eyelids.

They often appear on the outer eyelid, but sometimes they can appear on the inside of the eyelid. A nodule that grows on the inside is more painful than one that grows on the outside. Unlike what they seem, they do not cause visual impairment.

Symptoms of a stye

The main symptom of a Stye is the development of a red rash that resembles a small boil on the eyelid, either inside or outside the eyelid. Other symptoms that accompany this condition include:

  1. Red-eye
  2. Watery eyes
  3. Swollen and painful eyelids

Read Also: how to get rid of a stye

When to see a doctor

In general, a stye can heal on its own without special treatment. However, the risk of complications remains. Therefore, it is recommended that you see your doctor if your Stye doesn’t get better after 48 hours.

In addition, seek medical attention immediately if the swelling spreads to other parts of the face, such as the cheeks.

Causes and Risk Factors for Stye 

The main cause of the Stye is an infection with the Staphylococcus bacteria. These bacteria, which commonly live on the skin, can clog the oil glands in the eyelids, causing inflammation. Other causes of Stye are germs and dead skin trapped at the tip of the eyelid.

Several factors can increase a person’s risk of getting stye, namely:

  • Touching eyes with dirty hands.
  • Using expired cosmetics.
  • Do not clean the cosmetic marks on the eyes before going to bed.
  • Wearing non-sterile contact lenses.
  • Experiencing inflammation of the tip of the eyelid (blepharitis).
  • Experiencing rosacea which causes facial skin to flush.

Stye Treatment

Most of the stye will heal on its own within 7-21 days, especially if it has burst and is oozing pus. However, never squeeze or break the stye yourself, as this can spread the infection.

Some of the following simple steps you can take to reduce the symptoms and discomfort caused by the Stye:

  • Maintain the cleanliness of the stye eyes
  • Wash the eyelids with a mild soap, and avoid using eye cosmetics until the stye has healed.
  • Compress the eyelids with warm water
  • Compress the eyelids 2-4 times a day, with a towel soaked in warm water.
  • Don’t wear contact lenses
  • Avoid wearing contact lenses until the stye has completely healed.
  • Taking pain relievers
  • Take over-the-counter pain relievers, such as paracetamol, to relieve eye pain.

If the Stye does not go away and gets more painful, contact your doctor immediately. The treatment step that is generally taken by doctors is to provide antibiotic ointment or eye drops. If the Stye does not improve with these medications, the ophthalmologist will make a small incision in the nodule to drain the pus.

Complications of Bintitan

A stye or hordeolum that doesn’t heal can develop into a cyst due to blockage of the gland in the eyelid (kalazion), or cause the spread of infection to the tissue around the eyelid (preseptal cellulitis).

Stye Prevention

The main step to prevent the appearance of Stye is to maintain eye hygiene, by:

  • Do not scratch your eyes, because it can trigger irritation and transfer bacteria to the eyes.
  • Wash your hands before touching your eyes, and wear protective glasses when cleaning the house to avoid dust.
  • Do not share the use of towels with other people, especially with someone who is in a Stye.
  • Sterilize contact lenses before use, and wash hands first before putting contact lenses on the eyes.
  • Do not use cosmetics that have expired, do not reuse eye cosmetics that have been used during a stye, and clean your face before going to bed.
  • See a doctor if you have an infection or inflammation around the eyelids.