Eye Twitching: Causes, Symptoms, and Treatment
Many people commonly associate eye twitching with superstitious beliefs. However, eye twitching, medically known as blepharospasm, is a condition characterized by involuntary contractions of the muscles around the eyelids. While occasional twitching is usually harmless, if the symptoms persist for more than a week, or if other facial muscles are affected, it is recommended to consult a doctor.
Understanding Eye Twitching
Eye twitching, also referred to as eyelid twitching, can occur in the upper and lower eyelids, with the upper eyelid being more commonly affected. In most cases, it does not have any significant impact on daily life.
Associate Professor Dr. Tanyathat Phadungkiatsakul from the Department of Ophthalmology at Ramathibodi Hospital, Mahidol University, explains that eye twitching is often associated with superstitious beliefs, such as the notion that the right eye twitching is a bad omen while the left eye twitching is considered good luck. However, these beliefs are not based on scientific evidence. Eye twitching is simply caused by the contraction of the eyelid muscles without any intentional intention.
The Underlying Causes of Eye Twitching
Eye twitching occurs as a reflex, similar to blinking. While normal blinking is involuntary, there are instances when the blink frequency increases due to irritation or other factors that affect the central nervous system. Some individuals may experience hyperactive muscle contractions, leading to excessive blinking or localized twitches, resembling a short circuit. These involuntary muscle contractions are typically triggered by nervous system stimulation.
Symptoms That Should Not Be Ignored
Eye twitching that persists for over a week, affects both eyes simultaneously, and spreads to other facial areas like the cheeks or corners of the mouth, may indicate an underlying problem. Other accompanying symptoms may include eye irritation, burning sensation, and eye discharge.
According to Dr. Tanyathat, occasional eye twitching, which is often caused by stress, lack of sleep, or excessive caffeine consumption, will usually resolve on its own without treatment. However, if the twitching is persistent and not related to stress or anxiety, to the point of inhibiting eye-opening, it is important to seek medical evaluation. Eye twitching can sometimes be an indication of neurological disorders, such as Parkinson’s disease, or other physical neurological problems.
Various factors can contribute to eye twitching, including accumulated stress, eye strain, dry eyes, lack of rest, certain medications, conjunctivitis, bright lights, glare, wind, air pollution, smoking, alcohol consumption, vitamin deficiencies, and excessive consumption of caffeinated beverages.
Dr. Tanyathat suggests that in most cases, eye twitching will resolve by itself, especially if it occurs infrequently or follows a stressful period. However, if the condition persists, becomes more severe, or leads to the inability to open the eyes, medical intervention may be necessary. Treatment options may include medications that reduce nerve signal transmission or the use of injectable drugs, like botulinum toxin, commonly used for cosmetic purposes.
Hemifacial Spasm: An Uncontrollable Facial Muscle Spasm
In addition to eye muscle twitching, some individuals may experience hemifacial spasm, where there is involuntary muscle contractions that affect half of the face. This condition typically begins with spasms in the eyelids and progresses to involve the cheek and lip on the same side of the face. Hemifacial spasm is more prevalent in women aged 50 to 60 years.
Hemifacial spasms can be triggered by factors such as facial movements, anxiety, stress, and fatigue.
Types of Hemifacial Spasm
Hemifacial spasms can be divided into two types:
1. Primary Hemifacial Spasm: This occurs when the 7th cranial nerve is compressed by nearby blood vessels, leading to abnormal facial muscle control and twitching in the face and eyelids.
2. Secondary Hemifacial Spasm: Less common than primary hemifacial spasm, the cause may not always be identifiable. Some cases have a familial component. Secondary hemifacial spasm may be caused by conditions such as atherosclerosis (hardening of the arteries), arteriovenous malformation (abnormal blood vessels), aneurysm, tumor in the salivary gland, tumors in the cerebellopontine angle, damage to the 7th nerve, cerebrovascular disease, multiple sclerosis, or Bell’s palsy.
Diagnosis and Treatment
Diagnosis of hemifacial spasm involves taking a thorough medical history and conducting a physical examination. Additional tests, such as magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) of the brain and cranial nerves, may be performed.
Treatment options for hemifacial spasm include anticonvulsant medications, which may help alleviate some symptoms in certain cases. Botulinum toxin injections or microvascular decompression surgery may be considered if a blood vessel is compressing the nerve.
Sources: RAMA Channel, Bangkok Hospital
Key Point :
Many people believe that squinting is a superstitious warning sign. Or as we often say, ‘The right is bad, the left is good’, but in fact, eye twitching in medicine is a condition where the muscles around the eyelids contract. However, if there are severe symptoms such as eye twitching continuously for more than a week, inability to open eyes, or twitching at the corners of the mouth or cheeks, you should consult a doctor.
eye twitch It is one of the symptoms of the eyelids. caused by rapid shaking This is eye twitching It can occur on both lower eyelids. and part of the upper eyelid But most of the time, the twitching of the upper eyelid is more frequent. almost no live effect
Assoc.Prof.Dr.Tanyathat Phadungkiatsakul Department of Ophthalmology Department of Ophthalmology Faculty of Medicine Ramathibodi Hospital Mahidol University said on the list Shortcut the queue of Dr. Rama via Facebook. RAMA Channel Explain that there is often an eye twitch attached to the subjectSuperstitious The right is bad, the left is good, but most of the truth is not superstitious. twitching is the Contraction of the eyelid muscles It works in a way we didn’t intend.
The process of involuntary muscle contraction, as a reflex, similar to the blink of an eye. We don’t mean to blink our eyes every time. There may be times when we get irritated. Blinking a lot But most of them are automatic movements, similar to breathing, when there is a problem with controlling the central nervous system Some cases will lead to automatic action. can be hyperactive Some people with many diseases Can blink more than usual without cause There is no dust in the eyes, but the eyes blink suddenly or occur locally, similar to a short circuit, usually when the muscles contract. It’s like having a nervous system. stimulate muscle contraction
Symptoms that should not be ignored
Eye twitching for more than 1 week, eye twitching in both eyes at the same time Jerking in other places too, such as the cheeks or the corners of the mouth There are also other symptoms such as eye irritation, burning eyes, and discharge from the eyes.
“Eye pecking, both ‘spontaneous disorders’ rarely, these days like stress, lack of sleep, excessive use of caffeine. make the muscles dance Mild spasms go away on their own, but in some conditions ‘related to the disease and the central nervous system’ such as spasm in the muscles around the eyelids or muscle spasms the face There will be more and more symptoms, eyes closed, unable to open eyes, or some people have crooked lips, etc.”
Accumulated stress, tired eyes, dry eyes, insufficient rest side effects of some medications conjunctivitis, bright light, glare, wind, air pollution, smoking, alcohol, vitamin deficiency, nutrition, drinking too much caffeinated drinks
“If it’s been infrequent or after coming out of the stressful state, it can go away on its own. you usually don’t have to do anything Usually there’s nothing to worry about. But if it’s always Even if it’s not related to anxiety or start to be a lot Until you can’t open your eyes, you need to check Patients may only have eye symptoms. or together with patients with other neurological diseases such as Parkinson’s who have movement problems And there are other physical neurological problems as well.”
However, if it is only upper or lower eyelid twitching, it is rarely a problem in terms of living. it can be about personality over image But some people have squinted eyes, they can’t open their eyes, drive with squinted eyes, eyes closed, like having cramps, there is a chance of an accident. some people have squinting eyes. Maybe it’s not just the eyes. But some people may go to the face, the neck, the muscles of the arms, but it is often continuous for a long time. Not once and gone
Assoc Professor Dr. Thanyatat explained that the eye twitch symptoms There is no direct specific treatment. Because still unable to know the cause directly where the problem is But the aim of most of the treatment is to reduce the triggering factors such as getting enough rest. Don’t stress too much, reduce caffeine, but if it doesn’t improve I’ll have to take medicine. Groups that reduce the rate of nerve signals or injectable drugs such as botulinum toxin used in beauty It can also be used for treatment.
The facial muscles frown halfway through.
In addition to eye muscle twitching, some people may have a hemifacial spasm. Bangkok Hospital It is described as a condition where there is a spasm in the half facial muscles. It is usually found in the age range of 50 – 60 years and is found in women more than men. The symptoms usually start on the eyelids and progress to more twitching on the cheek and lip on the same side. This spasm cannot be controlled. As the disease progresses, spasm is almost constant. He may experience spasms on the other side of the face, but very rarely and there will be spasms at the same time.
A number of factors can trigger facial twitching, including:
facial movement Anxiety, stress, fatigue, etc.
type of disease
Hemispheric spasms are divided into 2 types:
1. Primary Hemifacial Spasm is when the 7th cranial nerve is compressed by nearby blood vessels. causing abnormalities in the control of facial muscles twitching of muscles in the face and eyelids
2. Secondary Hemifacial Spasm is less common than Primary Hemifacial Spasm, sometimes the cause may not be known. And found that some people have a family history too. This can be caused by
hardening arteries Atherosclerosis, abnormal blood vessels (Arteriovenous Malformation), Aneurysm, Tumor of the Salivary Gland tumor in the area Cerebellopontine Angle Injury to the 7th nerve, brain spinal lesions such as cerebrovascular disease. Multiple Sclerosis and Bell’s Palsy
History taking and physical examination Additional special tests such as magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) of the brain and cranial nerves, etc.
Treatment of spasm of the facial muscles
anticonvulsant group Can help reduce some symptoms in some cases Botulinum Toxin Injection Microvascular Decompression Surgery If a blood vessel is pressing on the nerve
Source: RAMA Channel, Bangkok Hospital
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