Swollen Eyelids: Causes, Symptoms, and Treatments

swollen eyelids

What Are Swollen Eyelids?

Swollen eyelids are also referred to as “puffy eyes” or “bulgy eyes”. It occurs due to some infection or some mild to major disease in the eyes. People having swollen eyes often come up with the problem of pain in the eyes, or inflammation in the eyes. Depending upon the seriousness of the infection, the swelling can be healed within days or lasts up to several days.

People might get swelling because of any allergies like dust, animal dander, or sand. Swelling when came with fever, blurry vision, or improper movement of the eyeballs is considered to be serious and is advised for the patient to consult a doctor immediately.

However it is not necessary that people may have swollen eyelids because of eye infection or disease in the eyes but also due to several other problems like excess cold, increased sneezes, broken nose, or improper sleep pattern. One should always be careful about all these things as it causes a problem to your eyes.

Make sure you follow the 8-hour sleep pattern as it is necessary to keep your eyes healthy. If you are prone to severe cold and cough visit a doctor as soon as possible as it can create problems for your eyes. Swollen eyelids should not be taken as a normal and lenient problem; rather the one suffering from it should consult a doctor right away as it can be very contagious.

It is always suggested to keep your eyes clean so that it does not get infected easily. Swollen eyelids may lead to severe damages in the eyes such as blurred vision, vision loss, and chapped eyelids.


Symptoms of Swollen Eyelids



Some of the major symptoms of swollen eyelids are:

  • Itching and burning in the eyes
  • Increased production of water from the eyes (watery eyes)
  • Pain in and around the eyes
  • The problem in moving the eyeball
  • Dry eyes
  • Yellow fluid (pus) or white fluid discharge from the eyes
  • Redness in the eye
  • Severe headache
  • Blurred vision
  • Sensitivity to the light
  • Bulgy and swelled eyes
  • Mild or severe fever
  • Throat ache or itching in the throat
  • Difficulty in breathing


Causes of Swollen Eyelids

There are 5 major causes of swollen eyelids:


It is a red and a very painful lump on or inside the eyelids or around the eyes. It can be very painful and cause a sensation of burning in the eyes. Stye spread through some infection or bacteria. It can be passed from one person to the other when came in direct contact or sharing any item that comes in contact with their eyes like a towel or pillow.

One must be very careful about their hygiene and avoid touching their eyes as it can pass the dirt from your hands to the eyes or it can pass the bacteria present in the eyes to your hands which when came in contact with others can cause some infections too. It is highly recommended to wash your hands and rinse or apply a warm washcloth against your eyelids as it may relieve the pain for some time. A stye is a short term disease, and often it is treated within some days or weeks.




It is commonly an inflammation of the eyelids affecting the eyelashes which increase the production of water in the eyes. It occurs due to some skin infections or allergies mainly of dust or sand. In this, the eyes turn red and cause itching and burning in the eyes. It is considered to be a serious disease because if not treated on time it is life long. Hence it is suggested to visit a doctor as soon as possible. It can also be caused due to stress; therefore try not to be stressed and keep your eyes and your surroundings clean.



It is commonly referred to as “pink eye” or “red-eye”. It is caused by allergies or bacterial or viral infections. Also, It is extremely contagious and is easily spread between two or more people. It includes redness all over the eyes, itching, and burning or excess water discharge from the eyes. It is a short term disease and can be treated within days or some weeks.

People are recommended not to share their personal belongings with anyone especially their towels and pillowcase. They are often advised not to wear contact lenses if they use one while suffering from conjunctivitis. People are also advised not to put any eye make in this period. Rinse your eyes at least 4-5 times a day and especially before going to bed.

There are different types of conjunctivitis with different treatments. It is very harmful if found in newborns’; therefore immediate examination from an eye specialist is required.



Many people are allergic to different things. Some of the common allergies are food allergy, drug allergy. People get allergies because their immune system is strong enough to fight with that particular thing and they get several kinds of problems when comes to contact with those things. The basic allergy that leads to swollen eyes is dust allergy.

People often visit areas that are dusty and they start sneezing and have difficulty in breathing. Due to excess cold and breathlessness, our eyes get swelled up. Therefore people who are prone to allergies are advised to take proper medications and not to visit the areas or avoid things they are allergic too.

Swollen eyes due to allergies are not considered as too dangerous as it can be treated within days or weeks with proper medicines but if exposed to the same allergy again and again it can become extremely harmful.




It is a swelling or a lump formed on an eyelid because of the blocked oil gland. It occurs generally on the upper eyelid but is also seen in the lower eyelid in some cases. In fact, It is red and painless. When it grows it is very small in size but increases as days pass by.

A chalazion is commonly seen in adults between 30-50. It takes several weeks to recover and requires proper medications and treatment to be recovered. It is a very common problem that causes swollen eyes, almost 1 million people all over the world are found to have Chalazion in a year.



Treatment For Swollen Eyelids

Treatment for swollen eyelids depends upon the causes of it. That is, the cause of your swollen eyes would lead you to the treatment process. So here are some tips and treatment according to its reason of occurrence:

Treatment For Stye

Use a warm washcloth over your eyes as it relieves the pain and helps in healing of the stye. Do not use any kind of makeup on your eyes as it increases the chances of infections.


Treatment For Blepharitis

Use a cold washcloth against your eyelids. Keep rinsing your eyes and avoid going to areas that are dusty as it increases the infection. Use eye drops prescribed by the doctor and take proper medical help.


Treatment For Conjunctivitis

Treatment For Conjunctivitis

Rinse your eyes 4-5 times a day, change your towel and pillowcase every day. Do not touch your eyes with bare hands. Use antibacterial eye drops. Do not use old makeup or makeup brushes. Consult a doctor if it is not recovered within days.


Treatment For Allergies

The most important thing one must be careful if allergic to anything is to avoid coming in contact or using that thing as it causes serious problems. Swollen eyelids due to allergies can be treated by using tea bags over your eyes as it cools your eyes. You can also use eye drops prescribed by the doctor or use a washcloth over your eyes.


Treatment For Chalazion 

Treatment For Chalazion

You can use a warm washcloth over your eyes as it relieves the itching and redness for some time. It is advisable to visit a doctor and get all the necessary examinations done. The doctor might prescribe you some antibiotics if it is not treated by antibiotics within 6 weeks it has to be surgically removed.

To know more about it, you can easily visit our website Eyemantra. Our expert guides will provide a healthy diet chart for your eyes. If you are looking for other services like cataract surgery, Retina surgery or Ocuploplasty you can simply ring at +91-9711115191. Even you can simply mail us on  [email protected].

Related Articles:

Tips to Protect Your Eyes from Pollution

Convergence Exercises for Strengthening Your Eyes

Make An Appointment

Free Tele-Consultation

Book Appointment or Video Consultation online with top eye doctors