Why are my eyes twitching?
Eye twitching, or blepharospasm, is a condition in which you cannot keep your eyes open for a long time due to spasms.
The main causes of eye twitch include
What is an eye twitch?
An eye twitch is a harmless involuntary spasm of the muscle of the eyelids, which may resolve on its own. Eye twitch (blepharospasm) causes the eyelid to blink every few seconds for a minute or two.
Twitches are generally painless; however, if there is a strong spasm, it causes the eyelid to shut completely and then reopen.
What is the twitching eye an indication of?
Eye twitching is generally harmless and does not indicate any serious medical conditions. Sometimes, persistent eye twitching can be a sign of more serious conditions like:
Very rarely, eye twitching can be a sign of a nerve or brain disorder like:
What are the different types of eye twitches?
There are three types of eye twitches, which are:
- Minor eyelid twitches: These are normal twitches commonly associated with fatigue, stress, lack of sleep, caffeine, alcohol, or corneal or conjunctival irritation.
- Benign essential blepharospasm: This results in nonstop blinking or eye irritation. As the condition advances, it can cause blurry vision, light sensitivity, and facial spasms. Benign essential blepharospasm is caused because of fatigue, stress, and bright light or wind.
- Hemifacial spasm: This rare condition affects the muscles around the mouth and the eyelid. It generally affects only one side of the face.
When should an eye twitch be treated?
Seek medical attention in the following conditions:
- Twitch that lasts for more than a week
- Eyelid closes completely
- Spasms of other facial muscles
- Redness, swelling, or discharge from the eye
- Drooping of the upper eyelid
How to stop eye twitching?
Twitches generally stop without any major effort. If it doesn’t go away, you might try these techniques to ease eye twitching:
- Get adequate rest
- Cut down alcohol, tobacco, or caffeine
- Apply a warm compress to your eyes
- Use artificial tears to keep the eye surfaces lubricated
On the other hand, the physician might inject Botox (botulinum toxin) to treat serious conditions like benign essential blepharospasm or hemifacial spasm. Botox is prescribed for temporary relief, and you should undergo repeated treatment for complete relief.
There are some alternative therapies, which include:
- Biofeedback: This technique helps to control the involuntary muscle using relaxation exercises and methods
- Acupuncture: Thin needles are inserted to the pressure points to relieve twitching
- Chiropractic: This technique involves hands-on spinal manipulation to heal twitching
- Diet management
- Tinted glass
As a last resort, the physician might perform a surgical myectomy, i.e., removal of muscle and nerve ending around your eyelid to relieve spasm.
Health Solutions From Our Sponsors
Top Why Are My Eyes Twitching Related Articles
Eye Problems and DiabetesDiabetes and eye problems are generally caused by high blood sugar levels over an extended period of time. Types of eye problems in a person with diabetes include glaucoma, cataracts, and retinopathy. Examples of symptoms include blurred vision, headaches, eye aches, pain, halos around lights, loss of vision, watering eyes. Treatment for eye problems in people with diabetes depend on the type of eye problem. Prevention of eye problems include reducing blood pressure, cholesterol levels, quitting smoking, and maintaining proper blood glucose levels.
Dry Eye QuizWhat causes dry eye? Take this quiz to learn about dry eye syndrome and what can be done about it.
Dry EyesDry eyes are caused by an imbalance in the tear-flow system of the eye, but also can be caused by the drying out of the tear film. This can be due to dry air created by air conditioning, heat, or other environmental conditions. Treatment may involve self-care measures, medications, or rarely, surgery.
Eye AllergyEye allergy (or allergic eye disease) are typically associated with hay fever and atopic dermatitis. Medications and cosmetics may cause eye allergies. Allergic eye conditions include allergic conjunctivitis, conjunctivitis with atopic dermatitis, vernal keratoconjunctivitis, and giant papillary conjunctivitis. Dry eye, tear-duct obstruction, and conjunctivitis due to infection are frequently confused with eye allergies. Eye allergies may be treated with topical antihistamines, decongestants, topical mast-cell stabilizers, topical anti-inflammatory drugs, systemic medications, and allergy shots.
Eye Anatomy Detail PictureThe eye has a number of components which include but are not limited to the cornea, iris, pupil, lens, retina, macula, optic nerve, choroid and vitreous. See a picture of Eye Anatomy Detail and learn more about the health topic.
Eye Care and Eye Disorder
Many common eye disorders resolve without treatment and some may be managed with over-the-counter (OTC) products. It's important to visit a physician or ophthalmologist is the problem involves the eyeball itself or the condition hasn't improved after 72 hours of use of an eye-care OTC product.
Common Eye ProblemsEye diseases can cause damage and blindness if not treated soon enough. Learn the warning signs and symptoms of common eye conditions such as glaucoma, cataracts, pink eye, macular degeneration and more.
Eye Health FoodsEye health is boosted by lutein, zeaxanthin, vitamin C, omega-3 fatty acids, beta-carotene, vitamin E, vitamin A, and other nutrients. Special formulas of eye vitamins are available to boost eye health and decrease the risk of age-related macular degeneration (AMD) and other eye conditions. Eat a variety of colorful fruits and vegetables to protect your eye health.
Eye Symptom MeaningsWill your eye condition clear up, or is it a warning sign of a critical eye health issue? Learn about common eye symptoms, what they could mean, what you can do about them, and when to see your eye doctor.
Eye StrainEye strain is a symptom caused by looking at something for a long time. Symptoms and signs include redness, light sensitivity, headaches, and blurred vision. Symptoms may be treated by closing the eyes and taking a break from the visual task.
Eye Conditions QuizWhat do you know about your eyes? Take this quick quiz to learn about a range of eye diseases and conditions.
How Do You Treat a Swollen Eyelid?Your eyelids might swell due to local infection, trauma, or any other illness, where fluid builds up in the entire body. Depending on the cause, one or both eyelids may become swollen.
Pink Eye (Conjunctivitis): Types, Treatment, and SymptomsPinkeye, also called conjunctivitis, is redness or irritation of the conjunctivae, the membranes on the inner part of the eyelids and the membranes covering the whites of the eyes. These membranes react to a wide range of bacteria, viruses, allergy-provoking agents, irritants, and toxic agents.
Pink Eye SlideshowHow do you get pink eye? And how contagious is pinkeye? If you woke up with crusty eyelids and red, swollen eyes, you may have conjunctivitis. Learn about eye drops and home remedies for pink eye.
What Are Some Common Eye Infections?An eye infection is a condition in which viruses, bacteria or other microbial agents may attack the eye. This can cause itching around the eyes or the eyes may turn pink. The infection can affect the eyelid, cornea or conjuctiva (inside lining of the eyelid).
What Does An Eye Infection Look Like?An eye infection may bring about the following changes in the eye: A pink tint in the whites of the eye, swollen red or purple eyelids, crusty lashes or lids, and/or discharge of fluids which may be yellow, green or clear.
When Should I Be Worried About Eye Twitching?An eye/eyelid twitch (myokymia), is an involuntary, repeated spasm of the eyelid muscle. It can happen in the upper or lower lids. Eye twitching is usually painless and harmless. It often resolves without treatment. Though less common, eye twitching is sometimes the first sign of a chronic movement disorder.