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    Eye Twitching

    An eye twitch is an involuntary, abnormal blinking of your eyelid. This abnormal blinking may happen many times per day. If eye twitching is severe, it can impair vision.

    Eye Twitching

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    What is eye twitching?

    An eye twitch is an involuntary, abnormal blinking of your eyelid. This abnormal blinking may happen many times per day. If eye twitching is severe, it can affect your vision.

    One facial muscle closes your eyelid. Another raises your eyelid. Problems with either of these muscles (and sometimes both) may cause your eye to twitch. Other eye muscles also may contribute to eye twitching.

    Many people have an occasional eye twitch, especially when they are tired or have had a lot of caffeine. Frequent eye twitching is fairly uncommon. Anyone can have eye twitching, but it is more common in middle-aged and older women.

    What causes eye twitching?

    A common cause of eyelid twitching is ocular myokymia. This is benign and does not lead to other problems. Ocular myokymia can be caused by being tired, having too much caffeine, or stress. One cause of persistent, frequent eye twitching is a condition called benign essential blepharospasm. This is when both eyes close or twitch at the same time. Researchers aren’t sure exactly what causes it, but it can cause problems with the muscle groups around your eye. They also think problems with the basal ganglia (a part of the brain) might play a role. Having certain genes may contribute to eye twitching in some people too.

    Rarely, another problem with the brain or nervous system might cause eye twitching. These problems include:

    Parkinson disease

    Brain damage from inflammation or a stroke. This is especially true for the thalamus, basal ganglia, or brain stem.

    Reaction to certain mental health medicines

    Meige syndrome. This is a nervous system movement disorder.

    Multiple sclerosis Hemifacial spasm Bell palsy

    These health conditions usually have other symptoms as well.

    Who is at risk for eye twitching?

    A history of head injury may increase your risk for eye twitching. You may also be at greater risk if it runs in your family, or if you have used certain mental health medicines.

    What are the symptoms of eye twitching?

    Eyelid twitches vary quite a bit in severity and frequency. Some people might have eyelid twitches every few seconds. Others might have them much less often. Your eye twitches may last for a few days or longer and then go away for a while. In some people, eye twitching happens more often and lasts longer over time. In many others, symptoms go away and don’t come back.

    Usually, only the upper lid twitches. Probably both of your eyes will twitch, but sometimes only one eye shows symptoms. Your eyelid might just shut partly, or it might close all the way.

    In addition to eyelid spasms, you might note these symptoms:

    Eye irritation (often a first symptom)

    Increased rate of blinking

    Light sensitivity Dry eyes

    Vision problems, if twitching is frequent

    Facial spasms

    Symptoms of eye twitching often go away when you are sleeping or concentrating on a difficult task. Many people find that certain tasks may make their eye twitching go away briefly. This might be activities such as talking, singing, or touching another part of the body.

    Other things may make symptoms more likely. These include:

    Tiredness (fatigue) Stress Bright lights Driving Caffeine

    Eye irritation from another cause

    How is eye twitching diagnosed?

    Your healthcare provider will ask about your health history and do a physical exam. This often includes a full nervous system and eye exam. Often, a healthcare provider who specializes in the eyes (ophthalmologist) will make the diagnosis. If your provider rules out other causes of eye twitch, they may diagnose you with benign essential blepharospasm or hemifacial spasm. You often won’t need any other tests. In some cases, your provider might order imaging of your brain with a CT scan or an MRI. This can rule out other medical causes of eye twitch.

    How is eye twitching treated?

    You might not need any treatment if you don’t have a lot of symptoms from eye twitching. Getting more rest and reducing your caffeine intake might help ease your symptoms.

    If your eye twitching is causing problems, your healthcare provider might recommend a botulinum toxin injection into the muscles of your eyelids. This may paralyze the muscle that is contracting.

    Your healthcare provider might have you try a medicine to treat eye twitching. These medicines tend to ease symptoms only in the short term. They don’t help everyone.

    If your eye twitching is still severe, you may need a surgery called a myectomy. In this surgery, healthcare providers remove some of the muscles and nerves of your eyelids. This stops symptoms in many people.

    Your healthcare provider will also need to treat any underlying health conditions that might be causing your eye twitching. An example is Parkinson disease.

    What are possible complications of eye twitching?

    If eye twitching is chronic and severe, it can permanently damage your eyelids and the other structures in the area. This can cause problems such as:

    Upper eyelids resting lower than normal

    Eyebrows resting lower than normal

    Extra skin in the upper or lower eye

    Abnormal folding in of the eyelids

    Some people with chronic eye twitching also eventually develop muscle spasms in other parts of the body such as the jaw or neck.

    Source : www.cedars-sinai.org

    Eyelid Twitch: Causes, Treatments, and Prevention

    An eyelid twitch is when your eyelid muscles involuntarily and repetitively spasm. Learn about the possible causes and how you can find the right treatment.

    Eye Twitching: Causes, Treatments, and Prevention

    Medically reviewed by Avi Varma, MD, MPH, AAHIVS, FAAFP — Written by Kimberly Holland on January 27, 2022

    Eyelid twitches, or myokymia, can be caused by eye irritation, eye strain, lack of sleep, dry eyes, or too much caffeine. Severe or long lasting eyelid spasms may be a sign of other conditions.

    An eyelid twitch, or myokymia, is a repetitive, involuntary spasm of the eyelid muscles. A twitch usually occurs in the upper lid, but it can occur in both the upper and lower lids.

    For most people, these spasms are mild and feel like a gentle tug on the eyelid. Others may experience a spasm strong enough to force both eyelids to close completely. These spasms typically occur every few seconds for a minute or two.

    Episodes of eyelid twitching are unpredictable. The twitch may occur on and off for several days. Then you may not experience any twitching for weeks or even months.

    The twitches are typically painless and harmless, but they may bother you. Most spasms will resolve on their own without the need for treatment.

    In rare cases, eyelid spasms may be an early warning sign of a chronic movement disorder, especially if the spasms are accompanied by other facial twitches or uncontrollable movements.

    Sex and gender exist on spectrums. We use “women” and “men” in this article to reflect the terms that have been historically used to gender people.

    Types of eyelid twitches

    Eyelid twitching can be classified into three types:

    general eyelid spasm

    essential blepharospasm

    hemifacial spasm

    General eyelid spasm

    Some amount of eyelid spasms can be considered typical and doesn’t indicate any kind of serious problem. These twitches can arise from a variety of environmental factors, and generally disappear with rest. If these twitches are persistent and disrupt your life, you may want to speak with your doctor about your symptoms.

    Benign essential blepharospasm

    If the spasms become chronic (long term), you may have what’s known as benign essential blepharospasm, which is the name for chronic and uncontrollable winking or blinking.

    This condition typically affects both eyes and is more common in women than in men.

    It affects up to 50,000 people in the United States and usually develops in middle to late adulthood. The condition will likely worsen over time, and it may eventually cause:

    blurry vision

    increased sensitivity to light

    facial spasms

    Hemifacial spasm

    If the eyelid twitch affects just one eye, a hemifacial spasm

    Trusted Source Trusted Source

    is a possibility. This type of spasm is a neuromuscular disorder usually caused by a blood vessel putting excess pressure on one of your facial nerves.

    This disorder is more common in women than in men, and it’s also more common in people from Asia. If left untreated it may cause:

    frequent, uncontrollable eye twitching

    an inability to open your eye

    twitching in all muscles of one side of your face

    What causes eyelid twitches?

    Eyelid twitching can stem from a wide variety of causes

    Trusted Source Trusted Source

    . If this symptom is bothering you, it may help to discuss it with your doctor.

    Eyelid twitching or spasms may be caused or made worse by:

    eye irritation, strain, or corneal abrasion

    environmental irritants, such as wind, bright lights, sun, or air pollution

    fatigue or lack of sleep

    physical exertion or stress

    use of alcohol, tobacco, or caffeine

    dry eyes

    medication side effects

    light sensitivity

    uveitis, or swelling of the middle layer of your eye

    blepharitis, or inflammation of your eyelid

    conjunctivitis, or pinkeye

    migraine episodes

    Complications of eyelid twitches

    Rarely, eyelid spasms are a symptom of a more serious brain or nerve disorder. When eyelid twitches are a result of these more serious conditions, they’re almost always accompanied by other symptoms.

    Brain and nerve disorders that may cause eyelid twitches include:

    Bell’s palsy (facial palsy), which is a condition that causes one side of your face to droop downward

    dystonia, which causes unexpected muscle spasms and your affected area’s body part to twist or contort

    cervical dystonia (spasmodic torticollis), which causes your neck to randomly spasm and your head to twist into uncomfortable positions

    multiple sclerosis (MS), which is a disease of the central nervous system that causes cognitive and movement problems, fatigue, and eye twitching

    Parkinson’s disease, which can cause trembling limbs, muscle stiffness, balance problems, and difficulty speaking

    Tourette syndrome, which is characterized by involuntary movement and verbal tics

    When do eyelid twitches require a visit to the doctor?

    Eyelid twitches are rarely serious enough to require emergency medical treatment. However, chronic eyelid spasms may be a symptom of a more serious brain or nervous system disorder.

    You may need to contact your doctor if you’re having chronic eyelid spasms along with any of the following symptoms:

    Your eye is red, swollen, or has an unusual discharge.

    Your upper eyelid is drooping.

    Your eyelid completely closes each time your eyelids twitch.

    The twitching continues for several weeks.

    Source : www.healthline.com

    What Does it Mean When Your Eye Twitches?

    Eye twitching can be a sign that you’re stressed, convey your emotions to others, and, some say, it can even be a sign of good or bad luck to come.

    Home Conditions Eye Twitching » Meaning

    What it means when your eye twitches

    By Autumn Sprabary

    Eye twitching can mean different things to different people, depending on their knowledge of science, cultural beliefs and social awareness. Even with several known triggers, it’s difficult for doctors to explain why fatigue, caffeine and stress actually cause an eye to twitch.

    Depending on your perspective, an eye twitch can:

    Tell you something about yourself: Maybe you're feeling stressed or tired.

    Tell someone else something about you: You may come across to others as frustrated or irritable.

    Tell you something about your future: Perhaps some good or bad luck is headed your way.

    This multitude of ideas and speculations on what an eye twitch means, without a concrete answer, makes the facial tic somewhat of a mystery.

    What eye twitching can tell you

    If you feel your eye starting to twitch, it could be your body's way of saying:

    You've had too much caffeine or alcohol.

    You need more sleep.

    You are overly stressed.

    Your allergies are especially bad.

    Your eyes are strained.

    You're missing some key nutrients in your diet.

    If any of these causes make sense in your current situation — for example, there's a really big project due soon at work, the pollen count is extra high or you haven't been eating as healthily as usual — you may find relief when that project gets turned in, the pollen count goes down (or your allergy medicine finally kicks in), or you get back to better nutrition. It's common to find the solution to eye twitching in lifestyle moderation and management.

    Got a twitchy eye?

    A simple eye twitch can reveal more than you might think. Both to you and to others.

    A twitch might let you know you're over-stressed. It might tell your friend you're irritated. Or maybe that person across the counter will think you're giving them a little wink.

    Whatever signal that twitch is sending (with or without your permission), if it just won't go away, it's time to see the eye doctor. They can help you learn if something of concern is going on and provide tips on getting that twitch to sit still.

    What your eye twitching may tell others

    When someone’s eye twitches on television, it typically means they’re angry, annoyed or on the brink of losing their sanity. Though it’s difficult to pinpoint who first used eye twitching to express a state of mind, the use of it in film and television — specifically in animation — has caused people to associate eye twitching with emotional instability.

    Here are a few TV and movie characters whose eye twitch you may have noticed:

    Louise Belcher in Bob's Burgers

    Sheldon in The Big Bang Theory

    Donkey in Shrek

    Mr. DeMartino in Daria

    Chief Inspector Dreyfus in the Pink Panther movies

    While a well-timed eye twitch can be a great way to indicate mood in a fictional setting, an eye twitch in real life rarely results from emotion. Unfortunately, because of the common association with emotion, someone might think the worst if they notice your eye start to twitch. They may perceive it as a sign that you are frustrated or irritated with them.

    If a co-worker looks worried when your eye twitches, it's probably a good idea to reassure them that they likely aren’t the cause. Though stress can cause an eye twitch, the reaction is not immediate — it typically follows an extended period of stress.

    What eye twitching means for your future

    Some cultures around the world believe that an eye twitch can foretell good or bad news. In many cases, a twitch (or jump) in the left eye is associated with misfortune, and a twitch in the right eye is associated with good news or future success.

    The opposite tends to be true in Chinese culture, where a left eye twitch is typically associated with good news, and the right means bad news is headed your way. However, this can change depending on the time of day the eye twitch is experienced, as the Chinese zodiac calendar and the Chinese almanac are used to further decipher the meaning of your twitchy eye.

    Meaning can also be drawn based on the precise location of the twitch. In parts of Africa, a twitch in the lower lid means a bout of crying may be on the way, while a twitch in the upper lid may signify the upcoming arrival of someone unexpected. In India, the placement of the twitch can indicate upcoming good or bad news, the loss or gain of money, or even the birth of a child.

    In the Caribbean, the meanings of eye twitching are tied to your relationships with other people. Left eye twitching means someone is saying bad things about you or acting against you, or that a friend may be in trouble. If your right eye is twitching, any talk about you is positive, and you might get to reunite with a long-lost friend sometime soon.

    While different cultures around the world attribute different meanings to eye twitching, there is no medical or scientific proof to support them. Positive or negative events following a left or right eye twitch is purely coincidental.

    Medical attention for an eye twitch

    Eye twitches are often mild and stop on their own after a few hours or days. Because of this, medical attention is rarely needed for an eye twitch unless:

    Source : www.allaboutvision.com

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