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Symptoms, Causes, Treatments, Questions & Related Topics

Possible Symptoms for a Chalazion

  • Stye
  • Vision problems
  • Discomfort on the eye
  • Tenderness on eyelid
  • Swelling of the eyelid
  • Lump on the eyelid
  • Warmth or redness on the eyelid

Top 5 Chalazion Causes

1. Blocked Duct

Chalazions occur when a duct becomes blocked in one of the eyelid glands directly behind the eyelashes. These glands are known as Meibomian glands and produce a thin, oily fluid that helps the eyes stay moist and lubricated. Blockages in these glands can cause discomfort, swelling, and vision problems.

2. Blepharitis

Blepharitis is an eye condition that causes the eyelids to become inflamed. Inflammation of the eyelids has been linked to the development of chalazia and styes. Blepharitis may be caused by scalp dandruff, bacteria, and problems with oil glands in the eyelids. Other symptoms of blepharitis may include a burning sensation, tearing, itching, sensitivity to light, swollen eyelids, blurred vision, dry eye, and crusting of the eyelashes when waking up.

3. Rosacea

Rosacea is a chronic skin disease that thickens the skin on the face and that also causes eye problems like chalazion. People who have a family history of rosacea are highly prone to developing this eye condition, as well as those who blush frequently. Other eye problems that may occur on behalf of rosacea include a gritty feeling in the eye, inflamed and swollen eyes, sensitivity to light, and blurred vision.

4. Viral Infection

Influenza, pneumonia, and cold viruses are examples of viral infections that may block the meibomian glands in the eyes. People who have viral infections are often at higher risk for developing chalazia.

5. Tuberculosis

Tuberculosis is an airborne disease caused by bacteria called Mycobacterium tuberculosis that normally attacks the lungs, and that has been linked to the development of chalazia. People with weakened immune systems are often at the highest risk of developing tuberculosis. This disease is characterized by symptoms including fever, night sweats, fatigue, weakness, loss of appetite, weight loss, a cough that lasts a minimum of 3 weeks, and coughing up blood or mucus.

7 Ways to Prevent a Chalazion

1. Practice Good Hygiene

Eyes can become inflamed upon exposure to dirt and bacteria like scalp dandruff. Bathe and shower regularly to maintain good hygiene and prevent bacteria from affecting the eyes and causing chalazia. Washing your hands frequently can also help prevent the spreading of bacteria to the eyes along with viral infections that may lead to chalazia.

2. Clean the Eyelid

Chalazions may be prevented by gently scrubbing the edge of the eyelid at the eyelash line every night. Use cleansers that are gentle on the eyes such as diluted baby shampoo and eye cleansing pads to prevent irritation.

3. Apply Antibiotic Ointment

Antibiotic ointment can stop the growth of bacteria that contributes to chalaza. If you are at risk for developing chalazia on behalf of factors like rosacea and blepharitis, ask your doctor to prescribe an antibiotic ointment for the eyes. Then, apply this ointment to your eyelids every night after cleansing.

4. Wash and Bandage Cuts

Cuts in the skin can put you at a possible risk for viral infections that are spread through bacteria and saliva, such as from a dog bite. Wash, treat, and bandage cuts as soon as they happen to reduce the risk of infection and the development of chalazia.

5. Get Vaccinated

Vaccines can protect you from many viral infections that can cause chalazia. Visit your doctor regularly and stay up to date on vaccines to reduce your risk of becoming infected.

6. Clean Contact Lenses

Dirty contact lenses can often trigger inflammation and lead to eye infections and chalazia. Add a fresh solution to your contact lens case every day and never expose your lenses to water. Also, avoid wearing contact lenses while sleeping, since this prevents tears from naturally cleaning bacteria out of the eyes.

7. Discard Old Eye Makeup

Eye makeup can accumulate bacteria and must be replaced often to prevent eye problems such as chalazia. Replace mascara every 2 to 4 months, and replace eyeshadow and pencil eyeliner every 3 years. Avoid pumping the mascara wand in and out of the tube and never use your fingers to apply eyeshadow, since these behaviors can lead to the buildup of bacteria and fungi that contribute to chalazia.

Possible Chalazion Treatment Options

  • Warm compress
  • Antibiotic drops
  • Steroid injection
  • Surgery

Questions Your Doctor May Ask About Chalazion Treatment

  • When did you first start noticing symptoms?
  • Is the chalazion impairing your vision?
  • Do you have rosacea?
  • Do you have a viral infection?
  • Have you been diagnosed with tuberculosis?
  • Do you touch your eyes frequently throughout the day?
  • Do you wear contact lenses?
  • How do you normally care for your contact lenses?
  • How often do you replace your eye makeup?
  • Do you remove your makeup before going to bed?
  • Which method do you use to clean and wash your eyes?

Chalazion May Also be Known as:

  • Meibomian gland lipogranuloma
  • Stye
  • Hordeolum
  • Eyelid bump

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