Do you know why a stye itches? A lot of people don’t, and that’s because the answer is a little complicated. However, we’re going to do our best to provide answers today. We will also talk about how to prevent styes from occurring in the first place.
What’s a Stye?
A stye is an infection of the eyelid, and it’s caused by bacteria. This bacterium is usually found on the skin, but it can also be found in makeup or contact lenses. Typically, the bacteria enter the body through a cut or scratch on the eye. Once the issue has developed, you might notice that your eyelid is red and swollen. The good news is that styes usually go away on their own within a week or so.
Is a Stye Painful?
Not typically, no. You might feel some pressure or tenderness around the affected area, but it shouldn’t be too severe. However, the itchiness can be pretty annoying…and this leads to the all-important question.
Why Does a Stye Itch?
The simple answer is that your body is trying to fight off the infection. When bacteria enter your body, your immune system kicks into gear and sends white blood cells to the area to fight the infection. This immune response can cause inflammation and irritation, which can lead to that pesky itch.
Wherever possible, we recommend resisting the urge to scratch. The more you scratch the itch, the more can actually make the irritation worse and might even cause the infection to spread. If you absolutely must scratch, try to do so lightly and with a clean object.
Relieving the Itchy Sensation
If you’re looking for relief, there are a few things you can try. Applying a warm compress to the area for five to ten minutes a few times a day can help soothe some of the irritation. Furthermore, you can also try using a hypoallergenic eye cream or ointment to help lubricate the area and reduce inflammation.
If you’re struggling to find relief or the irritation is getting worse, it’s important to see a doctor. They can prescribe medication that will help clear up the infection and provide relief from the itchiness. In some cases, they may also need to drain the stye to speed up the healing process.
How to Prevent a Stye
There are a few things you can do to help prevent a stye from forming in the first place. First, it’s important to practice good hygiene. As mentioned, a stye comes from a bacterial infection, so keeping your hands and face clean can go a long way in preventing one. What’s more, you should also avoid touching or rubbing your face.
Second, you should also avoid sharing makeup or personal care products. This includes things like makeup brushes, towels, and pillowcases. If you do share these items, be sure to clean them thoroughly first. If you share these products, you’re not only taking on your own bacteria but also that of the person you’re sharing with. If they have bad habits, it puts all your hard work to waste.
Finally, you should take care to protect your eyes from irritants. For example, if you wear contacts, be sure to clean them regularly. If you work with chemicals, wear safety goggles. If you’re outside a lot, wear sunglasses. All these things will help to keep your eyes healthy and stye-free.
If you do get a stye, don’t worry. It’s not the end of the world. Just follow the steps above and it should go away within a week or two. If it’s a more serious issue, contact a reliable service like Microprism Optics for a health check!