Okay, it seems like a large number of people visiting my site are coming to read about eyelid twitching. In my fourth post (I am now over 250), I simply mentioned that I had one of those eyelid twitching episodes a lot of people seem to get, and it was irritating the heck out of me.
Suddenly, this site became the Mecca for Eyelid Twitchers. I can only suppose that there is relatively little out there about it, or that more people link to my site than they do to sites all about Eyelid Twitching, so I rank higher in Google.
Anyway, I started feeling bad for all those poor twitchers who came to my site seeking information or relief, and just found a really small note saying that my own eyelid was twitching as well. I mean, misery loves company and all, but it really isn’t useful outside of that. So I figured I might as well write something more substantive about eyelid twitching, so here it is.
First off, there’s a name for this: myokymia. “Myo-” is the Greek root for “eye,” and “-kymia” means “I’m making up this etymology.” But the name, at least, is for real. They’re also called eyelid “tremors,” as it sounds kind of psycho to have a “twitch,” or worse, a “spasm.” Nobody likes spasms. “Tremors” sounds cooler.
Myokymia is, according to doctors, “a common condition where a few of the muscle fibers of the upper — or more commonly the lower — eyelid contract irregularly. … Myokymia is closely associated with stress, fatigue, lack of sleep and too much caffeine.”
That’s doctorese for, “you’re eyelid’s twitching, moron. Try changing something.”
This doctor says that myokymia is associated with “brainstem neoplasms,” which sounds even cooler than “tremors.” “Brainstem neoplasms” is bound to get people at the office to pay attention when you talk about your problem. But then, the treatment for that includes a “lumbar puncture with examination of cerebrospinal fluid,” so maybe it’s best not to milk the neoplasm idea too far. Especially for a stupid eyelid twitch.
Frankly, when I get The Twitch, I’m not usually stressed out, I am getting as much sleep as ever, sometimes more, and I don’t drink coffee (I even have decaf Coke). Maybe it’s my Evil Plan to Dominate the World, we usually get eye twitches when we do that.
Some people stand by the theory that it is a vitamin deficiency, usually potassium (because someone once heard that potassium has something to do with muscles; we’re still trying to track that one down), and others swear that it’s a B-vitamin deficiency, saying they lose the twitch immediately when they start taking the pills. I have the strong feeling, however, that this is more to do with something that rhymes with the “flacebo effect.” For all of you who want the above remedies to work, I cleverly disguised my opinions about it there.
Treatment: Reduce your stress, get more sleep, nix the coffee, eat more bananas and B-complex pills. Throw in a couple of sugar pills for good measure. Save the cerebrospinal fluid exam for emergencies.
Or, you might just wait for them to go away on their own. Whatever.