An eye twitch, medically referred to as myokymia, is an uncontrollable eyelid spasm. In most cases, eye twitching lasts only a few minutes; however, an eyelid twitch can sometimes last for days or even weeks.
While annoying, most eye twitches are slight and go unnoticed by others.
How can I stop eye twitching?
To stop your eyelid from twitching, you’ll need to figure out what might be causing it to happen. Minor dietary and lifestyle adjustments can sometimes drastically reduce eyelid spasms.
Common Causes of Eye Twitching
- Stress - Probably the most common cause of eye twitching. To reduce stress, try doing yoga or breathing exercises.
- Fatigue - Eye twitching can be caused by a lack of sleep. Getting enough sleep and sticking to a regular sleep schedule often helps.
- Eye strain - Particularly digital eye strain from overuse of smartphones, computers and tablets. Driving can also cause eye strain. Follow the 20-20-20 rule when using digital devices. Every 20 minutes, look away from your screen and focus on a distant object, 20 feet away for at least 20 seconds. This reduces fatigue that may trigger eye twitching.
- Caffeine - Too much caffeine can cause twitching of the eyelids. For a week or two, try avoiding caffeinated coffee, tea and soft drinks to see if your eye twitching goes away.
- Alcohol - Take a break from alcohol if you suffer eye twitching after drinking beer, wine, or liquor.
If you have very frequent and/or prolonged eye twitching, sudden changes in appearance or abnormal movement of half your face (including your eyelids), or if you can't open your eyes because your eyelids are clamped together, these could be symptoms of a more serious condition. Contact Village Eye Centre in North Edmonton to learn more about eye twitching and what else you can do to prevent it from occurring.
Can an eye twitch be a sign of a more serious condition?
Very rarely, eyelid spasms are a symptom of a serious nerve or brain disorder. When eyelid twitches are a result of these more serious conditions such as multiple sclerosis (MS), Parkinson’s disease or Bell’s palsy, they’re almost always accompanied by other symptoms.
How is an eye twitch treated?
Most eye twitches go away without treatment in a few days. However, if they linger, try to eliminate or decrease potential causes by getting more sleep, eliminating caffeine, or applying a warm compress to your eyes when a spasm begins.
If your eye twitches are negatively affecting your quality of life, your doctor may recommend an injection of a botulinum toxin into your eyelid to paralyze the spasming eyelid muscles.
At Village Eye Centre, we put your family's needs first. Talk to us about how we can help you maintain healthy vision. Call us today: 587-410-5920 or book an appointment online to see one of our North Edmonton eye doctors.
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