Swollen face: What it can be and how to make the swelling go down


Swelling in the face, also known as facial eodema, corresponds to the accumulation of fluids in the tissues of the face. This can happen due to several reasons and hence it should be investigated by a doctor. The swollen face may be due to dental surgery, allergy or a consequence of a disease such as conjunctivitis. This swelling can also extend further to the level of the throat depending on its cause.


It is normal for a person to wake with a swollen face in some situations such as after sleep due to the pressure of the face on the bed or pillow. However, when the swelling appears suddenly and without any apparet cause, it is important to consult the doctor to identify the cause and start appropriate treatment.

Main causes


Some of the situations that can cause facial eodema include:

  • After dental surgery, in the region of the face, head or neck
  • During pregnancy and in the first days of postpartum
  • During cancer treatment, after a session of chemotherapy or immunotherapy
  • In case of an allergy that may be caused by food or products that you have applied to the face
  • After a day of eating exaggerations, especially containing excess salt and sodium
  • After sleeping many hours in a row, especially if you sleep face down
  • When sleeping a few hours, not taking enough rest
  • In case of infection in the face or eyes, such as conjunctivitis, sinusitis, or allergic rhinitis
  • During a migraine crisis or headache
  • Due to the side effect of medications such as aspirin, penicillin, or prednisone
  • After an insect bite in the head or neck region
  • Trauma involving the head region
  • Obesity
  • Reaction to blood transfusion
  • Severe malnutrition
  • Sinusitis
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Other serious situations that should be evaluated by a doctor when they occur include changes in the salivary glands, hypothyroidism, peripheral facial paralysis, superior vena cava syndrome, angioedema, or kidney disease, which causes swelling mainly in the lower part of the eye.

What to do to reduce swelling in the face

1. Apply cold water and ice


Washing your face with cold water is a simple but quite effective strategy. It is done by wrapping an ice pebble in a napkin sheet and passing it around the eyes in circular movements. It is a good way of eliminating excess liquid from this region because cold decreases the diameter of small blood vessels hence assisting in reducing edema simply and quickly.

2. Drink water and exercise

Drinking 2 glasses of water and going for a fast walk or running for about 20 minutes, before taking breakfast also promotes an increase in blood circulation and the formation of a greater amount of urine. This will in turn naturally eliminate excess fluid from the body. After that, you can have breakfast, as you avoid processed foods. You should preferably consume natural yogurt or a diuretic fruit juice such as pineapple with mint.

However, it is important to go to the doctor for further tests to check if the swelling has not been caused by cardiac, pulmonary, or kidney alterations. This may be further complicated if the person drinks too much water or when they walk or run fast.

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3. Make a lymphatic drainage on the face

Performing a lymphatic drainage on the face is also an excellent natural solution to reduce swelling in the face.

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Cornelius Arthur
I am an English language and literature teacher. I have worked in many cities of the world. I am currently producing content at upwork as a freelance. I find and produce the right content by doing good research.


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