My eyelid jumps, shakes, or vibrates: what are the causes and how can I fix it? We will answer you.
It has certainly happened to you at least once: one of your eyelids starts to tremble for no apparent reason, and it lasts without you being able to remedy it. What causes these uncontrolled movements? Are there ways to reduce these uncontrolled movements or prevent them from happening again?
What is an eye twitch?
Having a trembling eyelid or the impression that the eye is twitching is a fairly common phenomenon that, in the vast majority of cases, is benign. It is called fasciculation: in almost 90% of cases, it results from an involuntary and irregular contraction of the orbicular muscle of the eye, which is used to close and open the eye. These involuntary contractions would be linked to the autonomous excitation of the end of the nerves directly connected to this muscle. But fasciculation can also occur in other parts of the body, such as the calf or the corner of the lips.
Why can an eyelid twitch?
There are several reasons for this eye twitching:
Fatigue is generally the first possible explanation for trembling eyelids. Personal or professional preoccupations, poor quality sleep, or too much screen time: all these factors can influence your state of fatigue and put a strain on your nerves.
Eye fatigue is often the result of over-stimulation of the eyes and can also cause eyelid twitching. It may be time to rest your eyes if you notice:
- a decrease in your visual acuity;
- Blurred vision;
- a feeling of glare;
- Your eyes are irritated and red;
- a burning or stinging sensation in your eyes;
Heart palpitations, stomach aches, nausea, but also shaky left and/or right eyes: these symptoms can all indicate a state of stress. Indeed, when you are stressed, your muscles contract, and your nerves become sensitive. To best manage, your stress, try to establish a sleep routine and get at least 8 hours of sleep. You can also adapt your eating habits and reduce your coffee consumption, as well as practice regular physical activity.
A dietary deficiency can also cause fasciculations. Hypomagnesemia, or magnesium deficiency, is often blamed. Magnesium is an important trace element that ensures good communication between muscles and nerves. If you don’t get enough of it, the nerves can send the wrong signals to the muscles, which can result in muscle tremors or cramps, especially in the legs. If you think you may be suffering from a magnesium deficiency, don’t hesitate to talk to your doctor if he or she is not available: a simple blood test is enough to detect a possible magnesium deficiency.
In some cases, a trembling eyelid can be the symptom of another disease:
- high blood pressure: this can lead to vision problems and retinal pathologies, which may first manifest themselves as eyelid tremors;
- conjunctivitis: itching, redness, tearing but also twitching of the eye are all signs of this ocular inflammation;
- the presence of a foreign body in the eye (dust, grain of sand…): the fluttering of the eyelid is then a reflex of the eye which tries to evacuate it.
More rarely, the tremor can be caused by an infection, a neurological disorder, multiple sclerosis, or a brain tumor. If the onset of spasms coincides with signs of paralysis, or language or visual problems, urgent medical attention is required. These may be early signs of a stroke.
What should I do if I have an eyelid tremor?
In order to soothe your eyelid tremors, which can be annoying, several solutions are available to you:
- Heat relaxes the muscles: use a cotton ball or small towel soaked in warm water and leave it on the eyelid for five to ten minutes to calm the tremors;
- Gently massaging the affected eyelid can also help alleviate symptoms;
- Extra magnesium: peanuts, hazelnuts, spinach, sunflower seeds, millet, rice, beans, oatmeal and mineral water enriched with magnesium can give you the extra boost you need to fight your deficiency. If this is not enough, your doctor may also prescribe magnesium supplements.
Should I be concerned if I have eye tremors?
As a general rule, if the eyelid tremors are episodic and do not last long, there is no need to worry. However, if the tremors persist despite the measures mentioned above or if your eyelid has been trembling for several days without interruption, we recommend that you consult your doctor to rule out any risk of serious illness and to manage a possible vision problem.
We don’t give any medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Consult with your physician or seek medical attention before making any health or food-related decisions.
This article is about some simple general health or food tips that you can find everywhere on the internet, not about some deep professional advice.