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If Your Eyelids are Swollen, This Might Be Why

There are many different health conditions that can impact your eyes at any time, and most of them arise unexpectedly. Swollen eyelids, for example, occur when either the upper or lower eyelids become enlarged, puffy, and uncomfortable. This happens for a number of different reasons, and identifying the underlying cause can help you seek an efficient solution.

How  to Recognize a Swollen Eyelid

Visually assessing your eyes is often the most direct way to confirm that you have swollen eyelids, but there are also many symptoms associated with the condition. Swollen eyelids tend to become itchy, red and inflamed, and either too dry or too watery. The presence of eye discharge is common, as well as eye pain and vision obstruction.

Comparing the Upper and Lower Lids

The upper eyelid serves the important job of moistening the eye’s surface and protecting it from injury. When the upper eyelid swells, it can cause pain and additional complications if it can no longer properly trigger lacrimal gland secretions to keep the eye lubricated. When blinking becomes difficult, the eyes in turn become more vulnerable to foreign particles. The lower lid also protects the eye by preventing dust and debris from entering the eye, but it doesn’t actively move like the upper lid.

Possible Causes of Swelling

There are many reasons the eyelid might swell, some minor and some that require medical attention. Conjunctivitis, also known as pink eye, is a contagious infection that causes the eyelids to itch, swell, and appear red in color. Prescription eye drops are needed to kill the infection and return the eyes to a healthy state. A stye is another common cause of swelling. Styes appear as small but painful lumps or bumps that usually arise as a result of a bacterial infection of the oil glands near the eyelashes. Repeated compression with a warm washcloth is often enough to resolve a stye.

Allergies can cause swelling for a number of reasons as well, like exposure to allergens, a reaction to cosmetics, or an insect bite. Additionally, certain eye conditions like blepharitis, orbital cellulitis, and chalazion can all lead to swelling.

It’s always important to visit your eye doctor for chronic and painful swelling.  Dr. Older at the J. Justin Older Eyelid Institute will help get to the root of your eyelid swelling problems and prescribe the best solution to bring you relief. Give Dr. Older a call today at 813-906-1417 to make your first appointment.

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