It’s not unusual to experience occasional facial tremors or eyebrow twitching. If these involuntary movements become chronic or constant, there may be a problem to investigate.
Diet Can Be Behind Eyebrow Twitching
A person’s diet can cause involuntary twitches and tics. (The difference between the two is that a twitch is involuntary while a tic can be controlled to an extent.)
When a patient mentions or the doctor notices eyebrow twitching, he/she will ask how much caffeine a patient consumes. Caffeine is a common cause of involuntary twitching and facial tics in general. Someone who’s ingested more than the usual amount will get relief once it’s passed out of the system. Or if a person is a heavy caffeine drinker, a doctor will recommend reducing it for several days to see if that stops the twitch or tic.
Keep in mind that energy drinks have a lot more caffeine than the average cup of coffee or iced tea, and are packed with jitter-inducing sugar as well.
Magnesium helps control nerve and muscle movement and a lack of it can result in body tremors and twitches. The doctor usually asks if the patient has changed his or her diet recently. If yes, it is recommended to add a few magnesium-rich foods like bananas, avocados, whole grains, seeds, and nuts. Dark chocolate is also a good source of magnesium, but most dieters prefer to avoid this healthy treat.
Medical Reasons for Eyebrow Twitching
One reason health care providers ask patients for a medical history is that it provides answers to questions like why there would be a sudden, unusual development like an eyebrow that keeps twitching. Here are a few medical causes for twitchy eyebrows:
Many medications used to treat ADHD can cause twitching, so can medications for epilepsy and antipsychotics. Even diuretics, used to lower blood pressure, can trigger this side effect, probably because they often cause a magnesium deficiency. The patients should speak with the prescribing doctor about whether their eyebrow twitch is due to medication.
- Bell’s Palsy
This condition causes temporary facial paralysis on one side of the face because of damage to the seventh cranial nerve. The nerve can cause twitching as well.
This is a kind of dystonia — involuntary movements and prolonged contractions — that affects the eye. It begins with eyelids opening and closing involuntarily and can spread to other facial muscles, including those behind the eyebrows.
- Other Dystonia
Dystonia around the eyebrows is seen in patients with Parkinson’s disease, Tourette syndrome, and multiple sclerosis.
Patients who have suffered a stroke or brain injury may also experience eyebrow twitching as their muscles work to realign.
Why Is My Eyebrow Twitching? Consider Lifestyle Issues
In addition to diet, there are other lifestyle challenges that can contribute to facial twitching, including the eyebrows.
Too much screentime can strain the eyes. Take some time off. Get an eye exam to see if you need glasses or contact lenses, which will greatly reduce strain.
A person having an allergic reaction gets overloaded with histamine, which causes muscles to contract. In some people, this affects facial muscles including the eyes and eyebrows.
Some people twitch when their minds or bodies are stressed. Lack of sleep makes this more likely. Professional help can assist in identifying and managing the cause of stress.
- Recreational Drugs, Alcohol, and Tobacco
Legal or not, lots of things can cause eyebrow twitching because they affect the nervous system. Cutting down on any of these three may well reduce or even stop the twitching.