Ptosis : 10 Causes of Droopy Eyelid & Ways to Fix It

About Ptosis or Droopy Eyelids

Ptosis is a condition which is characterized by the droopy eyelids. When the upper eyelid starts sagging, it makes you feel tired, and look tired. A person can have one eye drooping, while the other one is normal, or can have both the eyes affected. While the former is called as unilateral ptosis, the latter is called as bilateral ptosis. It is important to know the causes of ptosis or droopy eyelid and start taking the treatment as soon as possible.

Ptosis: 10 Causes of Droopy Eyelids

There are various possible reasons for developing ptosis or droopy eyelids. Though a lot of people misinterpret the symptoms as allergies, ptosis or droopy eyelids is actually not related to any allergy. While some cases of ptosis are temporary, a lot of them are permanent. The reasons could be anything from benign to serious. When the problems affect the skin, nerves and muscles of eyelids, people develop ptosis or droopy eyelids.

10 Causes of Droopy Eyelids

Congenital Ptosis

Some people have droopy eyelids since their birth. When ptosis or droopy eyelids develops later in life, the phenomenon is known as the acquired ptosis.

Aging as a Cause of Ptosis or Drooopy Eyelids

Due to aging, people start experiencing weakening of muscles. This also affects the levator muscles, which are responsible for the movement of the eyes. While some people are born with eye muscles that are weak, there are others who might develop this later in their life causing ptosis or droopy eyelids.

Ptosis or Droopy Eyelids Caused Due to Neurological Disorders

Sometimes, neurological disorders such as Bell’s palsy or myasthenia gravis can also cause droopy eyelids.

Nerve Injuries

People can injure their nerves, or can have temporary stye, which can also cause ptosis or droopy eyelids. With stye, the eyelids become swollen and inflamed. Horner’s syndrome is one such nerve damage, which affects the face and the eyes. Other factors leading to nerve damage include brain injuries, lung or brain cancer, strokes, etc.

Cataract Surgery

Cataract or Lasik surgeries can also lead to ptosis or droopy eyelids, as the muscles or tendons get stretched during the surgical procedures.


In some cases, droopy eyelids are also related to thyroid glands. So, a case of hypothyroidism can lead to ptosis or droopy eyelids.

Diabetic Neuropathy

Type 1 and type 2 diabetes can also result in nerve damages causing ptosis or droopy eyelids because of uncontrolled blood sugar.

Muscular Dystrophies

These are inherited diseases which can weaken and damage the muscles. This usually happens because of a lack of protein and can cause ptosis or droopy eyelids.

Brain Aneurysm

Brain aneurysm is caused due to weak areas in the brain arteries which bulge out and get filled with blood. This can also lead to ptosis or droopy eyelids.

Intracranial Haemorrhage

This is a condition which causes bleeding inside the skull. This can also result in ptosis.

Symptoms of Ptosis or Droopy Eyelids

Ptosis or droopy eyelids can impair the vision, depending upon the obstruction of the pupil. In some cases, the eyelids may droop only slightly, while in other cases, it might cover up the entire pupil. Some of the common symptoms of ptosis or droopy eyelids include severely dry or watery eyes, tired looking face, absent eyelid creases, etc.

Diagnosis of Ptosis or Droopy Eyes

Regular Eye Examination: People, who suffer from ptosis or droopy eyelids, should get regular eye examinations done. A basic test of vision with the help of an eye chart will help in determining the severity of the issue.

Physical Examination and Blood Tests: During the diagnosis, the doctors will get a thorough physical examination done, in which the medical history and the symptoms will be studied. There will also be blood tests done, which will help in determining if the droopy eyes is caused by an auto-immune disorder or by diabetes.

X-Rays: Sometimes, an X-ray might also be conducted to study the structural abnormalities surrounding the eye.

Tensilon Test to Detect Droopy Eyelids: This is another eyelid examination in which the doctor injects a drug named Tensilon. After the drug is injected, the patient might have to move the eye muscles, which will show whether the drug is helpful in improving the strength of the muscles or not. This test is also conducted if myasthenia gravis is considered to be the reason for the problem.

Ways to Fix Ptosis or Droopy Eyelids

When the symptoms for ptosis or droopy eyelids are mild, treatment is not much required. In case the problem is serious, treatment is recommended depending on the exact cause behind the condition.

Special Glasses to Treat Ptosis or Droopy Eyelids

The doctor might prescribe the patient to wear special glasses, which can help in fixing the uneven cornea curve, which is the reason for causing blurry vision. The glasses contain crutches, which help in holding up the eyelid. One can also wear eye patches for strengthening the vision in the weak eyes.

Surgery for Ptosis or Droopy Eyelids

In extreme cases of ptosis or droopy eyelids, the doctor might also recommend surgery. Levator aponeurosis advancement is one of the most common surgeries to correct the problem of ptosis or droopy eyelids. Here, the surgeon will lift the eyelids so that the levator tendon gets tightened. Most of the people heal within 45 days after the surgery, but the bruising and swelling might last for about two or three weeks.

Home Remedies to Fix Ptosis or Droopy Eyelids

Some of the home remedies which help in fixing ptosis or droopy eyelids are:

Chamomile Tea

Chamomile tea is an effective home remedy as it contains anti-inflammatory properties, which are really good for the nervous system. So, when a person drinks this tea, he will feel his eyelids getting relaxed. The chamomile tea bags can also be kept over the eyes topically for treating ptosis or droopy eyelids. While keeping the teabags on the eyes, one should ensure that they are cold, and should be kept on the eyelids for about 20 minutes.

Nutritional Supplements

Bell’s palsy can be a reason for ptosis or droopy eyelids. So, one should take Vitamin B12 supplements along with Vitamin B. These are really useful for the nervous system, and for protecting eye fatigue and vision problems. The other nutrients necessary for correcting the problem of ptosis or droopy eyelids include Calcium, Zinc, Magnesium, Vitamin E, Lecithin, Taurine and essential fatty acids.

Herbal Remedies for Treating Ptosis or Droopy Eyelids Naturally

One can also use plantain cream and comfrey for treating ptosis or droopy eyelids naturally. They can also strengthen the weak connective tissues. One can also use shave grass for strengthening the tissues around the eyelid.

Eye Exercises

Another effective home remedy to fix the problem of ptosis or droopy eyelids is exercise. One can follow some exercises, such as one-eye exercise which can help in building the tolerance of eyelid muscles; the upper eyelid stretches which will help in strengthening the upper eyelids. Lower eyelid squints can also be tried. These will reduce the puffiness below the eyes. The steps for the exercise are as follows:

  • One should just lie supine, or sit erect, while doing this exercise.
  • Put the index finger at the outer edge of the eye, and place the middle finger in the inner edge of the eye, and one needs to apply a gentle pressure.
  • Now, look at the ceiling, squint the eyes with the lower lids. This will help the eyes to overcome ptosis.

Eye Patch

Eye patches can force the affected eye to perform the work, with an improvement in focus.

Yoga for Ptosis or Droopy Eyelids

Yoga is one of the best home remedy for many ailments. One can also do some yoga which will help in improving the concentration, vision and focus. Sitting on the floor, focus the eyes on a particular object, and hold the gaze for a period of time. This will help in working the eyelid muscles.


Eat foods rich in Vitamin A, such as carrots, or leafy green vegetables. One can also add fish to the diet as it has a high amount of Omega-3 fatty acids that is helpful for treating ptosis or droopy eyelids naturally.

These were some of the best home remedies to fix ptosis or droopy eyelids naturally. Ptosis is a common problem, and affects a lot of people. One only needs to follow the suitable treatment and home remedies so that the condition is kept under control.

Relevant Sources:

  1. American Society of Ophthalmic Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery – Ptosis
  2. Cleveland Clinic – Ptosis
  3. Healthline – Ptosis (Drooping Eyelid)
  4. American Academy of Ophthalmology – Ptosis (Drooping Eyelid)
  5. Mayo Clinic – Ptosis
  6. American Academy of Ophthalmology – Ptosis: What Is It and How Is It Treated?

Also Read:

Pramod Kerkar, M.D., FFARCSI, DA
Pramod Kerkar, M.D., FFARCSI, DA
Written, Edited or Reviewed By: Pramod Kerkar, M.D., FFARCSI, DA Pain Assist Inc. This article does not provide medical advice. See disclaimer
Last Modified On:August 21, 2023

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