Eye Problems: Styes and Chalazia – Causes, Symptoms, Treatments

Styes and Chalazia

The most common kind of pimples or bumps on eyelids are styes and chalazia. The eye area is a very sensitive and having a styes or chalazia on your eyelid can be very painful.

Where they appear?

Styes appear closer to the edge of the eyelid than chalazion, which is usually larger and usually not painful. It is important to know how to cure a stye since; otherwise, it can become a chalazion.



Styes appear because of the introduction of skin bacteria into the sebaceous glands that lubricate the eye. The chalazion appears after an internal stye because of which the gland has not been able to drain, has been blocked and has formed a nodule.

People with blepharitis (inflammation of the eyelids), diabetes, seborrhea dermatitis are more prone to styes.


Symptoms of styes and chalazia

If your children get a stye or chalazion in their eyes, they may experience any of the following symptoms:

– Sensitivity to light.
– Formation of scabs on the edge of the eyelid.
– Lachrymation
– Eyelids sensitive, red, swollen and hot.
– Irritation, itching or stinging in the eyes.
– The appearance of a reddish lump on the edge of the eyelid and at the base of the eyelashes, usually with a small point of pus in the central part. Sometimes, this can make it difficult to see.

What is Stye?

It is the infection of the sebaceous glands of the eyelids produced, usually, by bacteria called Staphylococcus. Quickly, a lump appears something red and painful. It can be located on the inner edge of the eyelid, with the tip inward (internal sty) or on the outer edge and with the head facing out (external sty).

The diagnosis is clinical (without the need for complementary tests) as it is clearly seen.

Most styes heal spontaneously without treatment. The application of hot compresses several times a day can help to unclog the gland; you have to make sure they are not too hot to avoid burns. If it does not improve, you should consult the doctor who will assess whether it is necessary to apply an antibiotic ointment or make a small incision to get the content of the gland out.

What is Chalazia?

It is a more lasting inflammation of the sebaceous glands of the inner edge of the eyelid. In the upper or lower eyelid, a hard lump appears which does not hurt. It is usually more chronic, not as acute as the internal stye that is inflamed and painful.

The diagnosis is clinical because it is seen and touched.

The treatment is usually not necessary because they tend to disappear spontaneously. Only if they alter the vision. Or if they pose important aesthetic problems, they should be referred to the ophthalmologist to remove them.

Eye Problems: Styes and Chalazia - Causes, Symptoms, Treatments

How to cure a stye or a chalazion?

To begin with, it is important not to try to remove them or tighten them. One of the treatments consists of applying hot compresses, during 10 to 15 minutes, and from 3 to 5 times to the day, until the affection disappears.

If the chalazion has been infected by some bacteria, or the stye does not improve with the hot compresses, we may be prescribed some antibiotic ointment. It is also possible that, in order to reduce chalazion inflammation, steroid injections are necessary.

If after the treatments the chalazion or stye does not heal or affect vision, it may be necessary to remove it surgically, although they are usually conditions that respond well to basic treatment.


How can be prevented?

There are children who tend to have styes or chalazion. Some simple measures can help prevent this from happening:

– Clean the eyelids every day with a special soap for the eyes.
– Wash hands frequently.
– Avoid touching your eyes with dirty hands.

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