Eye twitching, eyelid tics, and spasms are a very common issue. You suddenly feel a muscle spasm or nerve jump while you are reading, cooking or doing anything else. We always wonder what’s causing it.
There’s no specific answer as to what causes eye twitching. It’s usually linked to stress and fatigue, and most experts concluded that twitching eye can be caused by excessive intake of caffeine, alcohol, and tobacco.
Eye twitching can also be caused by dry eyes, excessive eyestrain, allergies, or irritation of the eye or the eye membrane. Often, it occurs without a specific cause. In general, these eye spasms are harmless and painless.
These occurrences can be a symptom of a severe neurological disorder, such as an abnormal blinking or spasm of the eyelids (blepharospasm) or amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), known as Lou Gehrig’s disease.
Blepharospasm, more common in women than in men, develops in mid to late adulthood. There are about 2000 cases every year only in the U.S. However, you should know that this condition is not serious if it discovered on time. You might feel extra sensitivity to light, blurry vision and even your entire face to start twitching if the condition progresses.
However, you should know that this condition is not serious if it discovered on time. You might feel extra sensitivity to light, blurry vision and even your entire face to start twitching if the condition progresses.
Chronic eyelid twitches can also be induced by undetected corneal scratches, which can cause permanent eye damage if left untreated. That’s why it’s extremely important to visit an ophthalmologist in a case of an eye injury.
If you experience any of the following symptoms, consult an ophthalmologist as soon as possible:
- If your eye spasms last more than a week;
- If the spasms shut your eyelid completely;
- If spasms affect your entire face;
- If your eyes swell, redden or there’s eye discharge;
- If your upper eyelid starts dropping.
A prompt visit to a doctor will rule out any possibility of a neurological disorder. If, however, there’s a risk of one, you’ll be referred to a neurologist or other specialist.
- Drink less caffeine.
- Get adequate sleep.
- Keep your eye surfaces and membranes lubricated with over-the-counter artificial tears or eye drops.
- Apply a warm compress to your eyes when a spasm begins.
Additional treatments include:
- massage therapy
- nutrition therapy
- psychotherapy, which can be helpful for Tourette’s syndrome
- tai chi
- yoga and other meditation techniques for relaxation