Sunken Eyes: Signs, Causes, Treatment

Sunken eyes are found mainly in older adults due to the aging process. However people of any age can also have it due to various causes.

Woman looking tired with dark under eye circles

Can you easily tell if a person is unhealthy, tired, or stressed out by looking at their face? Wouldn’t be surprised if your answer to that question is yes. Many people can tell just by looking at your face if you’ve had enough rest or if you’re sick. That’s because the face tells a lot about your health. Talk about dark circles that indicate sleep deprivation. And sunken eyes as well that indicate dehydration, aging, and other medical conditions.

Sunken Eyes

Sunken eyes in medical terms are called tear trough hollows. And it affects mostly older people. But this does not mean that younger people don’t have sunken eyes. The skin right under your eyes is very delicate. They can get easily darken and appear sunken.


Don’t forget that the appearance of sunken eyes varies from one person to another. Here are some signs:

  • Tired-looking
  • Under-eye circles
  • Under-eye hollows
  • Thin-looking skin under the eyes
  • A dark lower eyelid

Causes of Sunken Eyes

There are many causes of sunken eyes in people. Find out these causes below.

  • Aging: Fat loss, bone density, less collagen production are all part of the aging process and contribute to sunken eyes.
  • Dehydration: It’s most especially common among children. Children are more susceptible to dehydration. Seek medical attention if your child has sunken eyes with diarrhea and vomiting to prevent severe dehydration.
  • Lack of sleep: Lack of good quality sleep causes dark circles and sunken eyes. Getting enough sleep would help reduce sunken eyes.
  • Dramatic weight loss: When we lose weight, the fat loss comes from every single part of our body. That is why if there’s drastic weight loss, the face also loses fat, and the skin on the face becomes more transparent. Given that, you would expect that the person would have sunken eyes.
  • Allergies: Some allergies would lead to sunken eyes. For instance, hay fever, also known as allergic rhinitis, can cause the formation of dark circles. When this happens, the person has a sunken look.
  • Smoking: Interestingly, smoking can also cause sunken eyes. Smoking degrades the collagen in the skin. And with this, the skin tends to lose its elasticity. The skin around the eye would begin to sag. And this leads to sunken eyes.

Is There a Way it Can be Fixed?

Different causes have different treatment methods. So you must identify the cause first to know the way out.

If it’s as a result of allergies, then medications would do the trick. Get over-the-counter antihistamines. It would help reduce allergic reactions.

On the other hand, if it’s a result of the lifestyle, here are some tips on how to go about it.

  • Get enough rest. Have a fixed schedule for sleeping and stick to it. That would make you feel better and look better every morning.
  • Buy good moisturizers with sunscreen.
  • Take two slices of cucumber and place on your eyes. Leave it there for about 10-20 minutes. This would help moisturize your skin and even reduce irritation.
  • Stay hydrated always. Always endeavor to take as much water as you can every day
  • Eat healthily. Always take fruits and vegetables that would make your skin look fresh
  • Quit smoking

You can opt for surgical treatments to address sunken eyes. But the thing is that these surgeries come with their risks. It could be a minor or major type of surgical procedure. So you have to weigh your options.

  • Dermal fillers: This is painless, and the procedure does not take time. The effect doesn’t last for a long either. So you would have to do it like every year.
  • Cosmetic surgery: This is more detailed, more expensive, and long-lasting than dermal fillers. Face lifting reduces the sunken eyes, and the recovery time is longer.

Most times, sunken eyes are harmless. It’s mostly due to the aging process and lifestyle. That is why changing lifestyle can help prevent sunken eyes.

If sunken eyes are associated with other symptoms, it can be caused by an underlying disease. See a doctor for a proper diagnosis of sunken eyes.

Sunken Eyes Signs, Causes And Treatment

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