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Treatment for Sties

A sty is a bacterial infection on or in your eye that causes red, painful swelling. It can be located on the outside or inside of the eyelid.

Most sties heal on their own in about a week. In the meantime, you can reduce pain and swelling by applying a warm compress for five to 10 minutes several times a day and keeping the area clean.

Erica E. Gibson, MD
Erica E. Gibson, MD

“Sties heal quicker if you leave your eye completely alone for several days,” says Erica E. Gibson, MD, family practice physician at Saint Francis Medical Center. “Do not wear contact lenses or any eye makeup and do not squeeze the sty, though it may appear to be filled with pus.”

Call your doctor if the sty does not disappear after a week, or if you begin experiencing a fever, chills or vision problems. You should also seek help if you have recurring sties.

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