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Eyelid sores can be both uncomfortable and unsightly. These inflammations or infections occur on the delicate skin around your eyes and can be caused by a variety of factors. In this article, we’ll explore the various causes, symptoms, and treatment options for eyelid sores to help you understand and manage this condition better.

Causes of Eyelid Sores

There are several causes of eyelid sores, including:


Blepharitis is a common inflammation of the eyelid margin. It can be caused by bacteria, mites, or skin conditions such as seborrheic dermatitis. Blepharitis often leads to red, swollen eyelids and the formation of crusty sores around the eyes.


A stye is a painful, red bump that forms along the edge of the eyelid due to an infected oil gland. Staphylococcus bacteria are usually responsible for stye infections, which can cause eyelid sores.

Introduction to Eyelid Sores


A chalazion is a small, painless lump that forms on the eyelid due to a blocked oil gland. Although not an infection, a chalazion can sometimes be mistaken for a stye and can cause eyelid sores if it becomes inflamed.

Herpes Simplex Virus

The herpes simplex virus (HSV) can cause cold sores on the lips and around the mouth, but it can also infect the eyelids. When this occurs, it leads to the formation of painful, blister-like sores on the eyelids.

Allergic Reactions

Contact dermatitis, caused by an allergic reaction to substances like cosmetics, can lead to eyelid sores. Common allergens include makeup, eye drops, and contact lens solutions.

Introduction to Eyelid Sores

Symptoms of Eyelid Sores

Common Symptoms

The symptoms of eyelid sores can vary depending on the cause. Common symptoms include:

  • Redness
  • Swelling
  • Pain or tenderness
  • Itching or burning sensation
  • Watery eyes
  • Crusting or discharge

Introduction to Eyelid Sores

When to See a Doctor

While most eyelid sores are harmless and can be treated at home, you should consult a doctor if:

  • The sore worsens or doesn’t improve after a few days
  • You experience vision changes or severe pain
  • The swelling spreads beyond the eyelid
  • You have recurring eyelid sores

Treatment Options for Eyelid Sores

Home Remedies

Some eyelid sores can be treated with home remedies,

  • Applying a warm compress to the affected area for 10-15 minutes, several times a day
  • Keeping the eyelid clean and free of makeup or other irritants
  • Avoiding rubbing or touching the sore to prevent further irritation or infection

Over-the-Counter Treatments

Over-the-counter treatments can help alleviate symptoms and speed up the healing process. Some options include:

  • Lubricating eye drops or artificial tears to soothe dry or irritated eyes
  • Over-the-counter pain relievers, such as ibuprofen or acetaminophen, to reduce pain and inflammation
  • Antibacterial ointments or creams for bacterial infections, like styes

Medical Treatments

In some cases, medical treatments may be necessary for eyelid sores. These can include:

  • Prescription-strength antibiotic ointments or oral antibiotics for severe bacterial infections
  • Steroid creams or ointments to reduce inflammation and itching from allergic reactions
  • Antiviral medications for herpes simplex virus infections

Prevention Tips for Eyelid Sores

To prevent eyelid sores, consider the following tips:

  • Maintain good eyelid hygiene by gently cleaning your eyelids with a warm, damp cloth daily
  • Avoid sharing makeup, brushes, or contact lenses with others
  • Replace your makeup and contact lens solutions regularly
  • Remove eye makeup thoroughly before going to bed
  • Avoid rubbing or touching your eyes excessively


Eyelid sores can be caused by various factors, including infections, inflammations, and allergic reactions. Recognizing the symptoms and knowing when to seek medical attention are crucial for proper treatment. By following the prevention tips and seeking appropriate treatment options, you can effectively manage and reduce the occurrence of eyelid sores.

Introduction to Eyelid Sores

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