When To Worry About Your Annoying Eye Twitches

Photographed by Rochelle Brock.
If you think getting your winged eyeliner perfectly even is tough on its own, think about how challenging it would be to get right when your eye insists on twitching. (Let me tell you, it's not an ideal situation.) Even if you're not an eye makeup wearer, those twitches seem to show up with no warning and for seemingly no reason. What gives?
Part of the confusion is that we use the phrase "eye twitches" to mean refer to several different conditions, the Mayo Clinic explains. It might just be that your eyelid is twitching (technical term: myokymia), or you could actually be blinking excessively — or even be experiencing a massive twitching in half your face.
Let's focus on eyelid twitching, the most common and least worrying of the three. These weird sensations are essentially muscle spasms affecting the top or bottom eyelid of one eye. They're usually a result of not getting enough sleep, having too much caffeine, or being extra stressed, according to the American Academy of Ophthalmology.
Unfortunately, there's not much you can do for an eyelid twitch other than wait it out. You can help speed the process up by doing what you can to reduce your stress level, making sure you get good sleep, avoiding caffeine, and using lubricating eye drops, MedLine says. If your twitch is especially annoying, you can also try drinking some tonic water, which contains quinine, a compound that has been shown to help muscles relax. But the dose of quinine in tonic water is pretty tiny, so mileage may vary.
Although twitches are annoying, they don't stick around for long and tend to come and go over the course of a few hours or days. But if your twitch isn't gone after a full week, or you feel like you're getting twitching eyelids frequently, you should check in with your primary care physician or an eye doctor. They may be able to help you find other ways of preventing and dealing with your spasms, possibly including Botox injections.
If the twitch causes your whole eye to close or droop or it comes with severe pain or redness, the Mayo Clinic says you should definitely get some medical attention — you may be dealing with a more serious issue, such as an injury to your cornea.
But for the most part, eyelid twitches are a minor and temporary annoyance. So, even if you have to skip a day, take heart in knowing you'll be back on that liquid liner grind tomorrow.

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