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How to Treat a Sty

A sty will usually go away within a couple of days, but those days can be painful. Use these remedies to help relieve the discomfort.


  • Step 1: Use a nonprescription treatment, such as ointment, eye drops, and medicated pads. Ask your doctor or pharmacist which product is best.
  • Step 2: Contact your doctor if you suffer vision problems, or if the sty becomes very painful or does not improve within three days with home treatment.
  • FACT: Styes occur when bacteria grows in the root of an eyelash causing an infection.
  • TIP: Throw away any eye cosmetics that may have been infected to avoid recurring infection.
  • Step 3: Avoid wearing eye cosmetics and contact lenses until the sty has healed. Wash your hands frequently and avoid touching the eye.
  • TIP: Never try to pop or squeeze a sty.
  • Step 4: Repeat the process three to six times a day. The warm water will relieve the pain and open pores so the sty can drain and begin to heal.
  • Step 5: Apply a clean, warm washcloth to the sty until the washcloth begins to cool, about 5 to 10 minutes.

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