Skip to content

Eye Health Center

Font Size

Understanding Styes -- Prevention

How Can I Prevent Styes?

If you tend to have a recurrence of styes, you may need to practice better eyelid hygiene. That means regular lid scrubs to remove excess germs and dead skin cells, which bacteria feed on. Put a few drops of mild baby shampoo into a teacup of warm water and stir. Using a cotton swab or wash cloth, gently brush the soapy solution along the base of your eyelashes while keeping your lids closed. Don't have time to mix baby shampoo? Scrub your closed lids with a washcloth with baby shampoo in the shower. This shouldn't take more than 30 seconds per eye. 

Regardless of the technique, it is the mechanical rubbing that keeps the lids clear of cellular debris. It is always important that you avoid contact of the eyelid with expired or contaminated cosmetics, dirty towels, or contaminated hands.

Recommended Related to Eye Health

Zinc for Vision

Zinc is an essential trace mineral that's important for the immune system and the brain, as well as other parts of the body. In infants, zinc deficiency can delay normal development. At any age, serious zinc deficiency can lead to risk of infections. Eye-related benefits. Zinc is believed to be important for vision because high levels of the mineral are found in the macula, part of the retina. Zinc enables vitamin A to create a pigment called melanin, which protects the eye. Some studies show...

Read the Zinc for Vision article > >

Pinpoint tenderness involving a few eyelashes can be an early warning sign of a stye. Frequent application of warm compresses at the first sign of an infection will speed resolution and prevent further blockage of the lid glands.

Recurrent styes may be associated with a chronic condition called blepharitis as well as acne rosacea. Your doctor or consulting dermatologist will be able to confirm the presence of rosacea and initiate effective medical therapy.

 

WebMD Medical Reference

Reviewed by Alan Kozarsky, MD on March 19, 2014

Today on WebMD

Woman holding tissue to reddened eye
Learn about causes, symptoms, and treatments.
eye
Simple annoyance or the sign of a problem?
 
red eyes
Symptoms, triggers, and treatments.
blue eye with contact lens
Tips for wearing and caring.
 
Understanding Stye
Article
human eye
Article
 
eye
Video
eye exam timing
Video
 
vision test
Tool
is vision correction surgery for you
Article
 
high tech contacts
Article
eye drop
Article
 

Special Sections