A swollen face, sometimes referred to as facial edema, is a condition that arises from the accumulation of fluids in the facial tissues. This condition may manifest as either mild or severe depending on the causative factors. Mild swelling is easily relieved with the use of home remedies, and usually very short-lived. Severe swelling on the other hand, may not respond to home remedies and often lasts for a considerable period of time. With the latter, pain in the facial area easily interferes with everyday activities, making it important to get medical attention.
A swollen face is usually accompanied by slight headaches, loss of appetite, fatigue and in some cases, drowsiness. If you start to experience blurry vision, you must see your doctor immediately to avert the risk of life-long complications. In mild cases however, the use of the home remedies listed below will help ease the swelling while providing relief from the symptoms of the same. Listed below are simple remedies used for this purpose alongside the method of preparation and the amount of time it takes for preparation.
1. Cold Compress:
Time Required: 20 Min
What You Need: Ice cubes and a clean towel. You may also use frozen peas or frozen vegetables.
One of the simplest go-to remedies required for the natural treatment of a swollen face is a cold compress. The purpose of the ice cubes is to cause the vessels underneath the skin to constrict, thus reducing the rate of swelling. This is also a great way of refreshing the skin so that you get rid of that tired puffy appearance. In the absence of ice, you can always use a pack of frozen vegetables or frozen peas. You will also need a clean towel for this remedy.
- Wrap the ice cubes or pack of frozen vegetables in the towel. This is done to prevent the skin from coming into direct contact with the ice and frozen vegetables as this easily causes frost bite.
- Once the vegetables are well wrapped, the next step involves rubbing the pack on the face, making sure to avoid resting the pack too long on one part of the face. It helps to focus on sections of the skin where the face has extreme puffiness.
- If you also have puffy eyes, remember to use the pack just below the eyes.
- Do this until the swelling goes down.
- You may need to repeat step 2 severally over a couple of hours to eliminate the swelling.
2. Drinking Water:
Time Required: Varied, but constant throughout the day.
What You Need: Plenty of drinking water.
Did you know that dehydration can lead to facial swelling? One of the key reasons for this is that when the body is dehydrated, it tends to trigger a defense mechanism that causes the body to hold on to water in the cells. This action, while preventing further loss of water, allows the fluids to accumulate and this manifests as a swollen face. Taking adequate amounts of water not only helps keep the swelling down, it is also a great way of ensuring that the skin remains hydrated throughout.
- For the average person, the recommended daily intake of water is 2 liters.
- Note however, that this should never be done in one sitting, and should instead be spread throughout the day.
- Consider adding lemon wedges, mint and/or fresh cucumber.
NOTE: This should only be used as a general guideline. If you suffer from conditions affecting the kidneys and blood pressure, make sure you consult a doctor before using this home remedy to alleviate facial swelling.
3. Reduce Salt Intake:
Time Required: Varies from person to person.
What You Need: Reduced salt intake.
One of the simplest ways in which you can reduce facial swelling is by reducing your salt intake. Salt has been recognized as one of the key contributors for a swollen face. High intake of salt and salty foods increases the body’s response to retaining water because of the high concentration of sodium in the body. The result is a puffy swollen face. Cut down on the salt. Remember to look out for processed foods that have a high concentration of salt in them because this also contributes to water retention.
- Make an effort to cut down on the amount of salt in your food, and especially not to add salt to food while at the table.
- Read the labels on processed foods to avoid increasing the amount of salt in your diet.
Time Required: 20 Min
What You Need: Massage oil ( olive, jojoba or facial massage oil) and a water bath.
Sometimes all you need to do to manage a swollen face is to massage the skin using an oil that will nourish and ease the swelling. The purpose of this massage, which is often referred to as the lymphatic drainage massage, is to help push the excessive fluid downwards. This allows drainage by the lymph nodes found in the neck as well as those found in the upper chest. You will need a massage oil for this purpose to avoid friction which could cause skin irritation. Choose from any of the following oils to massage the face: olive, jojoba, avocado or your preferred facial massage oil. You will need a water bath to warm the oil in order to improve its efficiency.
- Place the oil in a bowl and transfer to a water bath to warm the oil.
- Allow the oil to warm for a few minutes before application.
- Place a small amount of the oil on the palms of your hands and rub gently before massaging the face.
- Start off by massaging the forehead as you work your way to the skin below the eyes.
- Proceed to the cheeks, the jaw line and finally the neck region.
- Repeat this procedure at least 20 times in order to help drain lymph fluid continuously.
- In addition to the facial massages, there is also the option of facial tapping. This technique is similar to the massage, but differs in technique. Follow the directions below to make use of this technique.
- Press the middle fingers at the deepest part of the cheeks.
- You could identify this easily by placing your fingers at the point where the jawbone and the cheekbone meet.
- Massage this part of the skin in gentle circular motions for about a minute or so.
- Do this every few hours to ease the swelling on the face.
5. Cucumber and Lemon Juice:
Time Required: 60 Min
What You Need: 10 Slices of cucumber, lemon juice or milk (depending on skin type) and cool water to rinse the face. Ice cubes
One of the best home remedies for the natural treatment of a swollen face is cucumber. This refreshing vegetable has astringent properties that come in handy for the natural management of facial swelling. Cucumber is also helpful for those whose swelling is accompanied by redness of the face. Best of all, cucumbers can be used daily with little or no side effects. The choice of either lemon juice or milk is dependent on the type of skin you have. Lemon juice is ideal for those with oily skin as it helps regulate oil production by the sebum glands. Milk on the other hand, is recommended for those with dry skin because it both nourishes and hydrates the skin. The combination of cucumber and lemon juice/milk is a perfect and simple home remedy to use for this purpose.
- Place the cucumber slices in a bowl and pour in the lemon juice or milk depending on your preferred home remedy.
- Refrigerate the mixture for half an hour or place them in a bowl containing ice cubes.
- After half an hour, apply these slices to your face and leave them on for half an hour.
- Rinse the face with cold water.
- Use this remedy at least thrice daily or until the swelling subsides.
6. Egg Whites:
Time Required: 30 Min
What You Need: 2 Eggs and cold water.
Egg whites have long been known for their great benefits on the skin, but did you know they are also a great option for reducing facial swelling. The egg’s astringent properties also come in handy, restoring the skin’s natural state. If you suffer from excessively oily skin, this remedy will also come in handy. The directions for using egg whites are simple: apply the egg whites topically and rinse as described in the steps below.
- Create a small hole at one end of the egg and place it downwards in a glass. This allows the egg whites to flow out without the yolk. Repeat this for the other egg.
- Place the two egg whites in bowl and whisk until you have a runny mixture.
- Apply the mixture on your face and massage in before leaving for 15 minutes.
- Rinse the egg whites off the skin using cool water.
- Avoid using hot water because what you will end up with is cooked eggs, which are not an interesting thing to clean.
- Follow this up with your usual skin care routine daily until the swelling goes down.
7. Green Tea Bags:
Time Required: 20 Min
What You Need: 4 Green tea bags, 2 cups of hot water to steep the teabags and warm water to rinse.
Brewed tea bags are a great remedy for the natural treatment of a swollen face. The used tea bags not only have a soothing effect on the skin, they also have excellent astringent properties just like many of the aforementioned remedies. All you need for this remedy is a couple of green teabags and warm water to steep them in. Best of all, this remedy is suitable for just about every skin type.
- Steep the green teabag in the hot water for 5 minutes.
- Remove the teabags from the hot water and let them cool to avoid scalding.
- Place the cool teabags on the parts of the face where swelling is prominent and try to massage in.
- Leave the teabags on the skin for some 20 minutes or so and then rinse the face.
- Use warm water for rinsing purposes.
Other home remedies that you can use to treat a swollen face include a strawberry facial mask and coffee ground facial masks. It is important to note that if the facial swelling is accompanied by tenderness, fever, breathing difficulties or extreme redness, medical attention is recommended to prevent complications and possible infections. It also helps to lead an active lifestyle as this helps pump the fluids away from the face, thus reducing the chances of swelling. Remember to check with your doctor for any underlying conditions.