Few things are more annoying than persistent, uncontrollable eye twitches. One of your bottom lids might spasm at seemingly random times, or one of your upper lids might blink involuntarily. In any case, you might wonder if the twitch is indicative of a more serious issue. The good news is eye twitches are fairly common and rarely serious. They also tend to go away on their own. However, there are a few things that could contribute to your twitch. We've put together a list of common causes of eye twitches, as well as information to help you treat and prevent them.
8 Things That Might Be Causing Your Eye to Twitch
Most eye twitches are minor and little more than a short-lived nuisance. In order to prevent them in the future, you need to determine what causes them in the first place.
Common causes of eye twitches include:
Stress. Everyone's bodies react to stress in their own ways. Some people develop aches and pains in their joints, while other people suffer from headaches and nausea. If you experience eye twitches on a regular basis, they might be linked to stress and/or anxiety.
Eye infections. Inflammation caused by various eye conditions might cause your eye to twitch. Possible eye infections include conjunctivitis (pink eye), blepharitis, and uveitis. Your twitching might be a result of an infection if your eye is also puffy and bloodshot.
Fatigue. Aside from your brain, your eyes benefit more from sleep than any other part of your body. Your eyes are constantly working, which means they need ample time to rest. A lack of sleep often triggers eye spasms and twitches.
Caffeine intake. Caffeine stimulates your brain and other parts of your body. As a result, your eyelids might spas m on occasion. Your eyes are especially prone to twitching if you drastically increase your caffeine intake.
Eye strain. Stress on the eyes, or eye strain, is often the culprit behind eye twitches. You might experience eye s train if you need glasses or a new prescription. Computer screens can also cause eye strain, especially if you look at them for several hours a day.
Dry eyes. If your eyes don't have sufficient tears to lubricate and nourish themselves, you'll develop dry eye. Dry eye side effects include bloodshot eyes, itchy eyes, and eye twitches. Dry eye is fairly common and might result from:
Age (your eyes produce fewer tears as they get older)
Computer overuse (you tend to blink less when you look at a screen)
Medications, including antidepressants and antihistamines
Exposure to wind, dirt, or unusually dry climates
Medical conditions such as diabetes or rheumatoid arthritis
Allergies. Allergies often cause eyes to itch, water, or swell. Allergy sufferers often rub their eyes, causing the eye to release histamine. Histamine protects your eye against foreign pathogens and often causes eyelid twitching as a result.
Nutritional deficiencies. Just like your heart and brain need certain vitamins and nutrients, so do your eyes. Unhealthy diets can have all sorts of negative effects on your eye health, including twitching.
In more serious cases, neurological conditions may cause eye twitches. Parkinson's disease, Tourette's syndrome, and Bell's palsy are just a few conditions that often produce eye twitches. With these conditions, other symptoms always accompany eye twitches. So you need not alarm yourself if you only experience the occasional eye spasm.
Treating and Preventing Eye Twitching
Although eye twitches are rarely serious, you shouldn't have to suffer with them. Take the following steps to try to alleviate your eye spasms.
Place a warm compress over your eye when it begins to spasm or blink uncontrollably. The warmth helps relax the nerves in your eyes. Just be sure to avoid applying too much pressure to the eye.
Pay attention to your circumstances any time your eye starts twitching. Were you tired at the time? Stressed out about a big presentation at work? Had you just come in from the yard? Taking note of your disposition and surroundings at the time of the twitch will help you prevent the problem.
Use eye drops or artificial tears if you tend to have dry or itchy eyes. The increased moisture in your eyes should help cut down on the spasms.
Get more sleep. As mentioned above, your eyes need adequate time to rest and rejuvenate. Try to get at least 7 hours of sleep every night.
Look away from the screen to give your eyes a break. Try to look away from all computer, TV, and smartphone screens at least once every 20 minutes.
Say no to caffeine, alcohol, and tobacco. These substances have adverse effects on all parts of your body, including your eyes.
Relax. Give your brain and body time to rest and recharge. You can try meditating, reading a good book, or knitting to de-stress. The less stressed you feel, the less your eyes will twitch.
When to See a Doctor About Your Eye Twitch In rare cases, eye twitches and spasms require medical attention. You should schedule an appointment with your optometrist right away if:
Your eyes are also red or swollen, or they discharge fluid other than tears.
Your upper eyelid droops suddenly.
Your eye closes completely when it twitches.
Your spasms persist consistently for several weeks.
Other parts of your face begin to twitch.
Keep these tips in mind as you try to deal with your eye twitches. Don't hesitate to see an optometrist if your spasms persist or become severe.