Symptoms A-Z

Sticky Eyelids in The Morning Symptom, Causes & Questions

Understand your sticky eyelids in the morning symptoms, including 6 causes & common questions.

An image depicting a person suffering from sticky eyelids in the morning symptoms

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Contents

  1. 6 Possible Causes
  2. Questions Your Doctor May Ask
  3. Statistics

6 Possible Sticky Eyelids In The Morning Causes

The list below shows results from the use of our quiz by Buoy users who experienced sticky eyelids in the morning. This list does not constitute medical advice and may not accurately represent what you have.

Inflamed eyelid (blepharitis)

Inflamed eyelid, or blepharitis, is a bacterial infection of the skin at the base of the eyelashes.

If the oil glands around the eyelashes become clogged, normal skin bacteria will multiply in the oil and cause infection. The glands can become blocked due to dandruff of the scalp and eyebrows; allergies to eye makeup or contact lens solution; or eyelash mites or lice.

Symptoms include red, swollen, painful eyelids; oily, dandruff-like flakes of skin at the base of the eyelashes; and eyelashes that grow abnormally or fall out.

If the symptoms do not clear with hygiene, see a medical provider. Blepharitis can become chronic and lead to infections of the eyelids and cornea; dry eyes which cannot take contact lenses; and scarring and deformity of the eyelids.

Diagnosis is made through physical examination of the eyelids, under magnification and through skin swab of the eyelashes.

Treatment includes warm compresses and careful washing of the eyelids; antibiotics in pill or cream form; steroid eyedrops; and treatment for any underlying condition such as dandruff or rosacea.

Rarity: Common

Top Symptoms: eye itch, sensitivity to light, eye redness, feeling of something in the eye, dry eyes

Symptoms that never occur with inflamed eyelid (blepharitis): severe eye pain

Urgency: Self-treatment

Bacterial conjunctivitis

Bacterial conjunctivitis, or pinkeye, is an inflammation of the clear membranes covering the eye. It causes redness, pain, and irritation of one or both eyes.

Staphylococcus or streptococcus bacteria are often involved, and anything that brings bacteria to the eye can cause conjunctivitis. Touching the eyes with unwashed hands; sharing eye makeup, washcloths, or towels; or improperly cleaning contact lenses are common causes. The same bacteria that cause the sexually transmitted diseases chlamydia and gonorrhea can also cause conjunctivitis.

Most susceptible are children, but anyone can be affected.

Symptoms include a gritty, burning feeling in the eye; discharge or tears; swelling; itching; pink discoloration due to dilated blood vessels; and sensitivity to light.

Diagnosis is made through patient history, physical examination, and careful eye examination. Smears may be taken from the eye for testing.

Treatment involves a course of antibiotic eyedrops. It is important to use all of the drops as prescribed, even when the infection seems to improve. Warm compresses over the eyes can help ease the discomfort.

Rarity: Common

Top Symptoms: sore throat, eye redness, eye itch, watery eye discharge, eye redness

Symptoms that always occur with bacterial conjunctivitis: eye redness

Urgency: Primary care doctor

Chronic allergic conjunctivitis

Itchy, red, swelling of the whites of the eyes caused by allergies to any number of things (like pollen, hay, etc).

Rarity: Common

Top Symptoms: watery eye discharge, eye redness, itch in both eyes, severe eye itch, swollen eyelid

Symptoms that always occur with chronic allergic conjunctivitis: itch in both eyes, eye redness, severe eye itch

Symptoms that never occur with chronic allergic conjunctivitis: vision changes, lump in front of the ear

Urgency: Self-treatment

Sticky Eyelids In The Morning Symptom Checker

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Vernal conjunctivitis

Vernal conjunctivitis is long-term (chronic) swelling (inflammation) of the outer lining of the eyes due to an allergic reaction. Vernal conjunctivitis often occurs in people with a strong family history of allergies, such as allergic rhinitis, asthma, and eczema.

Rarity: Ultra rare

Top Symptoms: wateriness in both eyes, eye itch, eye redness, sensitivity to light, feeling of something in the eye

Urgency: Primary care doctor

Acute allergic conjunctivitis

Itchy, red, swelling of the whites of the eyes can be caused by allergies to any number of things (like pollen, hay, etc).

Rarity: Uncommon

Top Symptoms: eye itch, eye redness, watery eye discharge, itch in both eyes, eye redness

Symptoms that always occur with acute allergic conjunctivitis: eye itch, eye redness

Symptoms that never occur with acute allergic conjunctivitis: lump in front of the ear, vision changes

Urgency: Phone call or in-person visit

Viral conjunctivitis

Viral conjunctivitis, or pinkeye, is an inflammation of the clear membranes covering the eye. It causes redness, pain, and irritation of one or both eyes.

The viral form of conjunctivitis is very contagious because it is caused by the same viruses that cause influenza or the common cold. It is spread when an infected person coughs or sneezes, and then someone else inhales the virus from the droplets in the air.

Symptoms include a gritty, burning feeling in the eye; discharge or tears; swelling; itching; pink discoloration due to dilated blood vessels; and sensitivity to light.

Diagnosis is made through patient history, physical examination, and careful eye examination. Smears may be taken from the eye for testing.

Antibiotics only work against bacteria and cannot help against a viral illness, and so antibiotic eyedrops are not effective against viral conjunctivitis. Treatment includes easing the symptoms with eyedrops and warm or cool compresses over the eyes until the illness has run its course, which takes two to three weeks.

Rarity: Common

Top Symptoms: eye redness, eye itch, sensitivity to light, feeling of something in the eye, watery eye discharge

Symptoms that always occur with viral conjunctivitis: eye redness

Urgency: Self-treatment

Questions Your Doctor May Ask About Sticky Eyelids In The Morning

To diagnose this condition, your doctor would likely ask the following questions:

  • Do you feel like there is something in your eye?
  • Do you have dry eyes?
  • Have you been around anyone with the same symptoms, possibly exposing yourself to an infection?
  • Is there any fluid or discharge coming from your eye(s)?

The above questions are also covered by our A.I. Health Assistant.

If you've answered yes to one or more of these questions

Take a quiz to find out what might be causing your sticky eyelids in the morning

Sticky Eyelids In The Morning Symptom Checker Statistics

People who have experienced sticky eyelids in the morning have also experienced:

  • 7% Tearing Up In Both Eyes
  • 4% Sore Throat
  • 4% Eye Itch

People who have experienced sticky eyelids in the morning were most often matched with:

  • 66% Bacterial Conjunctivitis
  • 16% Inflamed Eyelid (Blepharitis)
  • 16% Chronic Allergic Conjunctivitis

Source: Aggregated and anonymized results from visits to the Buoy AI health assistant (check it out by clicking on “Take Quiz”).

Sticky Eyelids In The Morning Symptom Checker

Take a quiz to find out what might be causing your sticky eyelids in the morning

Disclaimer: The article does not replace an evaluation by a physician. Information on this page is provided as an information resource only, and is not to be used or relied on for any diagnostic or treatment purposes.