OMG, Is That A Stye? Here’s What You Should Know

Not only are your eyes beautiful, they’re also pretty amazing. For instance did you know that out of all the muscles in your body, those that control your eyes are actually the most active? Or that you blink approximately 17 times every minute—and not just to lubricate your eyes, but also to give your mind a brief break?
But all the qualities that make your eyes so impressive are the same qualities that make them so darn sensitive. Sometimes it feels like the smallest of things can irritate them. A ceiling fan? Yes—watch out for watering eyes. Fatigue and/or stress? Yup—prepare for eye twitching. Rubbing your eyes? You guessed it—brace yourself for a stye.
And while none of these symptoms are enjoyable, a stye may just be the worst of them all. If you’ve ever had a stye, (we’re sorry that you have) then you know exactly what we’re talking about.
Not only are these swollen, painful bumps uncomfortable, but they happen to form in the most awkward place possible: the edge of the eyelid. And let’s not forget that styes may also cause discharge, tearing, crusting on the eyelid and a scratchy feeling in the eye (yikes!). It also seems like they pop-up at the most random times—like the night before a big event—or do they?
While that stye may seem like it’s out of the blue, more likely, it’s actually the result of a small infection on your eyelid. This is usually caused by the bacteria, staph (yuck!). Now before you freak out at the thought of staph in your eye, this common bacteria isn’t always the culprit.
In fact, there are a number of common factors that may increase your risk of getting a stye, such as:
·         You’ve had one before (Who hasn’t?)
·         You wear contact lenses (Approximately 45 million Americans)
·         You’re not keeping your eye area clean (Don’t rub your eyes—seriously)
·         You’re using old makeup or not taking it off (Throw it out after 3 months and take it off every, single, night)
·         You have other common conditions, like rosacea, seborrheic dermatitis or diabetes
Even though styes usually disappear on their own in 7-10 days, sometimes that just isn’t fast enough. So, what can you do to help the healing process along?
·         Apply a warm, damp compress for 10 minutes, three or four times daily
·         Keep the area near your eye clean, this means no makeup
·         Avoid touching or rubbing your eyes
·         Skip contact lenses and opt for the your handy-dandy glasses instead
·         Most importantly: Do not squeeze or pick at it, this will only make it worse and it may spread the infection
Keep an eye on your stye.

There’s no denying that styes are painful and annoying, but the good news is they’re temporary. However, if you notice redness or swelling of your entire eyelid, have pain that radiates through your entire eyelid or it feels like something is in your eye, it’s time to see a health care expert. With extensive services and convenient locations, you can count on the knowledgeable providers of ChoiceOne Urgent Care, who are available seven days a week, from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.

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