What causes drooping eyelid and how to treat it?

Symptom Database

Have you ever noticed a drooping eyelid? It can be a frustrating and sometimes embarrassing condition to deal with. Known medically as eyelid ptosis, a drooping eyelid occurs when the upper eyelid droops down over the eye. This can affect one or both eyes and can vary in severity. In this article, we will explore the causes of drooping eyelid and discuss various treatment options available.

Causes of Drooping Eyelid

There are several factors that can contribute to eyelid drooping. Understanding the underlying causes can help in determining the appropriate treatment. Here are some common causes:


As we age, the muscles responsible for lifting the eyelids can weaken, leading to drooping. This is a natural part of the aging process and is often accompanied by other signs of aging, such as wrinkles and sagging skin.

Neurological Conditions

Some neurological conditions, such as Bell’s palsy or myasthenia gravis, can affect the muscles that control the eyelids. This can result in drooping eyelids as a symptom of these conditions.

Injury or Trauma

An injury or trauma to the eye or surrounding area can damage the muscles or nerves responsible for lifting the eyelids. This can lead to eyelid ptosis.


In some cases, drooping eyelids can be inherited. If your parents or close relatives have a history of eyelid ptosis, you may be more likely to develop it as well.

Treatment Options for Drooping Eyelid

Fortunately, there are several treatment options available for drooping eyelid. The appropriate treatment will depend on the underlying cause and the severity of the condition. Here are some common treatment options:

Eyelid Surgery

Eyelid surgery, also known as blepharoplasty, is a common procedure used to correct drooping eyelids. During the surgery, excess skin and fat are removed, and the muscles responsible for lifting the eyelids are tightened. This can help improve both the appearance and function of the eyelids.

Eyelid Exercises

In some cases, certain exercises can help strengthen the muscles around the eyes and improve eyelid drooping. These exercises may involve blinking rapidly, raising and lowering the eyebrows, or applying gentle pressure to the eyelids. It is important to consult with a healthcare professional before attempting any exercises to ensure they are safe and appropriate for your specific condition.

Home Remedies

There are several home remedies that may provide temporary relief from drooping eyelids. These remedies include using cold compresses, applying cucumber slices or tea bags to the eyes, and practicing good eye hygiene. While these remedies may not provide a permanent solution, they can help reduce swelling and improve the appearance of the eyelids temporarily.

Eyelid Drooping Creams

There are various creams and serums available in the market that claim to tighten and lift the eyelids. These products often contain ingredients such as peptides or retinol, which are believed to have skin-tightening properties. However, it is important to note that the effectiveness of these creams may vary, and it is advisable to consult with a dermatologist before using them.

Recognizing Symptoms of Eyelid Drooping

It is important to recognize the symptoms of eyelid drooping to seek appropriate treatment. Here are some common symptoms:

  • Drooping of the upper eyelid
  • Impaired vision or obstructed field of view
  • Eye fatigue or strain
  • Headaches or brow ache
  • Difficulty keeping the eyes open

If you experience any of these symptoms, it is recommended to consult with an ophthalmologist or a healthcare professional specializing in eye conditions. They can evaluate your condition and recommend the most suitable treatment option.

In conclusion, drooping eyelid, or eyelid ptosis, can be caused by various factors such as aging, neurological conditions, injury, or genetics. The appropriate treatment option will depend on the underlying cause and severity of the condition. Treatment options range from eyelid surgery to exercises, home remedies, and the use of eyelid drooping creams. It is important to recognize the symptoms and seek professional advice for a proper diagnosis and treatment plan. Remember, addressing drooping eyelid can not only improve your appearance but also enhance your vision and overall eye health.

Haroon Rashid, MD
Rate author
Urgent Care Center of Arlington, VA
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