How do I treat early symptoms of what I think is a stye on my lower eye rim?

Local heat. The best treatment at this stage is to put a wash cloth in the very warm, but not hot stream of water from your faucet, wring it out a little and lay it over the eye with the inflamed lid. You must do this diligently: five minutes at a time and about five times per day. This will usually get rid of the early stye in several days.