What is a nose twitching tic?
This is often described as a repetitive and bothersome movement of the nose that for many people is described as “rubbing my nose because it tickles”, “flexing my nose and upper lip, as though there’s a bee on it and I’m trying to shoo it off without using my hands”, “moving my nose much like when you’re about to sneeze or you have an allergy “and “feeling like my nose tenses up and then relaxes a lot”. Regardless of the variation, many people find it incredibly irritating to the point that the muscles that do this can actually get tired and begin to hurt.
What causes a nose twitching tic?
In most cases a nose twitch is relatively benign and can result from a lack of potassium in your diet, exercising a lot, excessive caffeine consumption, use of stimulant drugs/medications, stress, and lack of sleep. Other times it may be related to a Tic Disorder, such as Tourette’s Syndrome.
Can stress cause a nose twitching tic?
Yes, some people get facial twitches when they are stressed, tired and even excited.
In fact, for those that have recurrent nose twitches any extremes of emotion can amplify this nose tic and increase its occurrence.
Is a nose twitching tic a problem?
This is not necessarily a problem and with most people it is more of a habit that is barely noticeable to any one else. However, in some cases it is very much a bother, frequent, painful and very noticeable to others. People find that if they focus on it they won’t have the nose twitching tic. However, since they can’t do this all the time, particularly at night, it can get worse at night.
What to do about a nose twitching tic?
If it is not noticeable or much of a bother, ignore it, live with it and do nothing. If you look around everyone has one twitch, habit or otherwise that is characteristic to them. Comedians, for instance, pick up on this when they are going to imitate people. If it is a bother, get help and treatment.
Who can help with a nose twitching tic?
One of the best doctors to consult for a nose twitching tic is a child psychiatrist that also treats adults. Many child psychiatrists are trained to see not only children, but adults as well. In fact, while not logical, they are trained as adult psychiatrists first, THEN they sub-specialize in children. It is here that they learn about the identification, diagnosis and treatment of tic disorders, which often begin in childhood. Other medical doctors may not recognize people with a nose twitching tic and may not be aware that it could be a tic disorder. Sure they can tell you about whether it is a potassium deficiency, allergy or other medical problem, but the Psychiatrist (having also received medical school training) will also be able to identify these as the causes by running medical tests.
How to treat a nose twitching tic?
As with anything else it is important to treat the cause of the nose twitching tic. Get enough sleep, cut caffeine intake, make sure to have potassium in your diet and do what you can to reduce stress. Consider relaxation therapy and if needed, in very bad cases, medications can be used to significantly reduce the nose twitching tic.