Facial swelling

Facial swelling involves an accumulation of fluid in the face, which may extend to the neck and upper arms


  • Obesity
  • Allergic reaction (such as allergic rhinitis, hay fever, or a bee sting)
  • Conjunctivitis with swelling around the eye(s)
  • Stye with swelling around the infected eye
  • Malnutrition (when severe)
  • Sinusitis- A sinus infection (sinusitis) may cause facial swelling though this is rare. If swelling is related to a sinus infection, it will be located over the affected sinus.
  • Facial trauma or injury (such as burns)
  • Drugs including prolonged use or allergic reaction to aspirin, antipyretics, penicillin, sulfa, glucocorticoids, or other drugs
  • Blood transfusion reaction
  • Head, nose, or jaw surgery
  • Angioedema from any cause including reaction to contrast media from radiologic tests
  • Cellulitis- Cellulitis of the eye (orbital) or around the eye (periorbital) is a very serious condition and can spread rapidly. Discharge from the eye and irritation of the inside of the eyelids (conjunctivitis) also may be present.
  • Tooth abscess

Occasionally, you may wake up in the morning with puffy eyes or a swollen face from lying flat in bed. This type of swelling goes away on its own. As long as the swollen area is not red or tender, it is not usually a cause for concern.

Home Care

Apply cold compresses to reduce swelling from an injury. Raise the head of the bed (or use extra pillows) to help reduce facial swelling.

If facial swelling is caused by burns, or respiratory distress is present, emergency measures must be taken first. Then the medical history will be obtained and a physical examination performed


The Content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.

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