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Mirror, mirror on the wall, how can I get rid of these puffy eyes once and for all? If you find yourself saying this every morning, don’t fret. There are simple ways to treat your puffy eyes. Read on for reasons why puffy eyes happen and a few homemade remedies to get rid of those unwanted bags under your eyes.
What Causes Puffy Eyes?
In most cases, ordinary swelling around the eyes means there is an excessive buildup of fluids, called edema, in the surrounding tissue. Theskin around our eyes is the thinnest skin in our bodies, so any swelling will be noticeable.
Like it or not, aging is a common reason for the appearance of bags under eyes. As we age, the membrane that holds back fat in both the upper and lower eyelids starts to thin making the fatty tissue that protects the eye inside of the eye socket push forward and fill in spaces below the eye – which can cause puffy eyes. But aging isn’t the only cause; edema can result from a variety of factors including:
- Fluid retention from an overconsumption of salt
- Inflammation from allergies
- Sinus issues
- Fatigue or a of lack of sleep
- Hereditary facial features
So why does it seem that eyes are puffier in the morning? It’s because our eyes aren’t blinking as we sleep. Just like walking helps reduce swelling in legs that have been stationary for a prolonged period of time, blinking does the same for the swelling around our eyes. In fact, as soon as you start blinking after waking from sleep, some of the swelling around your eyes can start to reduce in an hour or so.
Simple Home Remedies to Treat Puffy Eyes
If your puffy eyes are related to inherited family traits or aging, you might need to consult an expert on cosmetic treatments. But in many cases, a simple home remedy can help eliminate the bags under your eyes.
- Apply something cold to your eye lids – Whether it’s a tea bag, a spoon, or a chilled cucumber slice, a cool compress held on the eyes for about 15 minutes can help reduce the swelling. Even a few splashes of cold water can help constrict blood vessels to decrease swelling.
- Add an extra pillow at night – After hours of lying down during sleep, the fluid under your eyes is pulled down by gravity – leading to puffy eyes. Try to use two pillows to keep your head elevated at night.
- Reduce the amount of salt in your diet – Overconsumption of salt can cause water retention in the face; and if you go to bed at night with too much salt in your body, the accumulation of fluid can cause the skin around your eyes to stretch and sag over time. Try to use less salt in your meals and add potassium-rich foods, such as bananas, to your diet to eliminate excess fluids in your body.
- Drink plenty of water – Be sure you drink at least eight 8-ounce glasses of water every day to flush out the fluid under your eyes and minimize the appearance of puffy eyes.
- Gently massage your eyes – Close your eyes and lightly press your finger under one eye moving it in a semicircle shape from the inside corner of your eye to the outside corner. Do this about 10-15 times for each eye to minimize puffy eyes.
Sometimes puffy eyes can be a sign of an underlying condition, such as hormonal imbalance, dermatitis, or allergies, so talk to your optometrist if you have any concerns.