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Why does my eye keep twitching?

Eye twitching is medically known as myokymia. Whether it's the left or right eye, the causes remain largely the same. There's no inherent significance to a twitch in one eye versus the other.

The most common causes of eye twitching are:

  • Fatigue
  • Stress

Other less common causes include:

  • Excessive caffeine consumption
  • Eye strain
  • Alcohol intake
  • Dry eyes
  • Nutritional imbalances
  • Allergies
  • Smoking

Is eye twitching a sign that I need glasses?

Eye strain can result from trying to focus without the appropriate corrective lenses, leading to overworking of the eye muscles. This strain might manifest as an eye twitch among other symptoms like headaches, blurred vision, or difficulty focusing.

If you suspect that you might need glasses or if you already wear them and think your prescription might have changed, it's a good idea to schedule an eye test.

Eye twitching can be related to eye strain, which might indicate that you need glasses or a change in your current prescription.

Can the flu make your eye twitch?

While the flu can cause muscle aches and fatigue, it's not a common direct cause of eye twitching. However, fatigue from the flu might indirectly contribute to it.

Is eye twitching a sign of a stroke?

No, a simple eye twitch is usually not a sign of a stroke. Strokes typically present with more severe symptoms, such as weakness on one side of the body, slurred speech, severe headache, and facial drooping.

How long does eye twitching last?

Most eye twitches are harmless and tend to come and go unpredictably. They might last for a few seconds to several minutes, but usually, they will go away on their own within a few days. Some might occasionally last for weeks, but this is less common.

When should I consult an Optician about eye twitching?

Consider seeing an Optician if:

  • The twitching doesn’t go away after several weeks.
  • Your eyelid completely closes with each twitch or the twitching affects other areas of your face.
  • Your eye is red, swollen, or has discharge.
  • You see other abnormal movements in your eye.
  • The eyelid droops.

How can I prevent my eyes twitching?

  • Ensure you are getting enough sleep
  • Reduce stress
  • Reduce caffeine intake if you consume a lot
  • Reduce eye strain by taking regular breaks if you spend long periods in front of a computer or reading
  • Reduce or eliminate alcohol intake
  • Ensure you're getting the right nutrients, like magnesium and potassium
  • If you have dry eyes, consider using eye drops
  • If you smoke, consider quitting or cutting down

If your eye twitching persists or if you're concerned about it, always consult an Optician for an accurate diagnosis and advice.

The insights and expertise shared in this article are brought to you by...

Matthew Burford BSc(Hons) Optometry MCOptom, Professional Services Manager at OutsideClinic

Matthew graduated from Aston University in 2004 before finding his passion for domiciliary eye care and joining OutsideClinic in 2005.

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