Has your chin been twitching lately, making you scared that you might have a neurological disease?
Before I go any further with this, I want to make sure you understand that this article is about twitching muscle fibers that are located in the chin.
There are other kinds of “twitches” that can occur about the chin, such as tics.
But I’m referring to fasciculations: the firing of muscle cells by electrochemical nerve impulses.
The face is full of muscles, and this includes the area below the surface of the chin.
Just like an eyelid might begin twitching like mad one day (yes, there are muscles there), the chin may one day begin twitching.
Do not lose sleep because your chin is twitching.
“Benign muscle twitching is very common,” says Kathryn Boling, MD, a board certified family medicine practitioner with Mercy Medical Center in Baltimore, MD.
Dr. Boling continues, “Usually a muscle moves because we have directed it to do so, but occasionally a muscle fiber becomes overly sensitive and will move, or twitch on its own.”
Causes of Twitching Chin Muscles
“This can happen because a person is fatigued, not getting enough sleep, under a lot of stress, drinking too much coffee or other stimulants, overexertion or dehydration,” says Dr. Boling.
And just because the muscles of the chin don’t work like the muscles of your legs and feet, doesn’t mean they shouldn’t twitch from fatigue, inefficient water intake, stress or the other benign causes of fasciculations.
Dr. Boling adds: “If muscle twitching happens continuously for days or weeks, or intermittently for more than two months, then further evaluation might be indicated.
“However, most muscle twitches are completely benign and will resolve on their own.”
Do not panic if your chin (or other body part) has been twitching for weeks or even months, especially if there are no other symptoms, namely marked muscle weakness.
The longer that you have time behind the twitching with nothing ever coming of the twitching, the more reassuring this is, but in the meantime, the rule of thumb is that there’s no need to panic.
Nevertheless, a clean bill of health by a physician, after examining you for any neurological ailments, will provide enormous peace of mind.
Dr. Boling diagnoses and treats a wide range of conditions from acute illnesses to chronic diseases such as diabetes and hypertension.
Lorra Garrick has been covering medical, fitness and cybersecurity topics for many years, having written thousands of articles for print magazines and websites, including as a ghostwriter. She’s also a former ACE-certified personal trainer.