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Swollen Eyes And Your Local Urgent Care: What To Know

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Urgent care centers have become a standard care solution across the country for those times when you need care right away but it's not a life-threatening situation. For example, your local urgent care may be the ideal destination if you wake up in the morning with one eye swollen and painful. Here's a look at some of the most common causes of problems like this and the basics of what your urgent care center can do.


If the swelling is paired with discharge, redness, and itching, there's a chance that it could be conjunctivitis. Your local urgent care facility can diagnose conjunctivitis easily with a physical exam and, sometimes, a culture of the discharge from your eye. Confirmed cases can be treated with medicated eye drops to help facilitate immune response.


A stye is a swollen area of the eyelid, typically along the edge of the eyelid, that's caused by a bacterial infection. These often develop and appear like a pimple at first, then grow larger and more uncomfortable. If you can see that the source of the swelling is central to the edge of your eyelid, there's a good chance that it's a stye causing the problem. Your urgent care center might recommend a warm compress over the area for ten or fifteen minutes at a time, a few times a day. The application of an antibiotic cream may help encourage healing as well, but most styes will go away on their own within a few days.


When an area of irritated, broken skin around your eye leaves you vulnerable to bacteria exposure, including staph, strep, or MRSA, it can lead to an infection known as cellulitis. When cellulitis occurs around your eye, it can often cause the entire eye to swell, sometimes painfully and significantly enough that you can't open the eye at all. Your local urgent care can diagnose cellulitis with an exam, and will typically prescribe oral antibiotics to treat it. In severe cases, you might be referred to the emergency room for IV antibiotic treatment, though.

These are just a few of the most common things to know when it comes to seeking urgent care treatment for a swollen eye. Check with your local urgent care today before the infection worsens and spreads beyond your eye socket. The more proactive you are about seeking care, the more effective and efficient your recovery is likely to be.

For more information about urgent care services, contact a local center.