Muscle twitching in arm


Muscle twitching refers to the repetitive movements of a specific muscular region or part in a definite pattern. It is often referred to as fasciculation. When an individual experiences muscle twitching in the arm, the muscle in that area repetitively moves sideways or jumps up and down for a few minutes.

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Muscle twitching in the arms generally tends to indicate excessive weariness of the muscles in that area, which is usually caused due to exertion. Some individuals may experience severe muscle pain due to muscle twitches which can lead to distress, irritation and discomfort.

Most of the muscle twitches are a result of an intense workout or exercise regime. Muscle twitching of the arms may also result from excessive activities such as continuous typing for long hours. Other than the arms, there are several parts of the body that experience muscle twitches. Some of them include the calves, the biceps and the hamstring. It should also be noted that muscle twitches are more common in the upper limbs, especially the upper portion of the arms.

Causes of muscle twitching in the arms

Muscle twitching is one of the ways in which the worn-out muscles react to exertion. They are just involuntary and spontaneous responses of the muscles which result in palpitations of that particular part of the muscle.

Individuals who experience muscle twitching need not be unnecessarily alarmed, as they are normal responses of the body to tiredness or fatigue. However, it is also essential to know that some of the muscle twitches can also be caused due to the presence of neurological disorders

Some of the causes of muscle twitching in the arm and other regions are listed below:

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  • Anxiety generally tends to build up increased levels of tension in the muscles and hence is one of the most common causes of muscle twitching in the arms. Individuals who have undergone expanded periods of anxiety, experienced panic attacks or have been increasingly exposed to anxiety filled situations are at greater risk to the prolonged contracting of the muscles, thereby leading to muscle twitching of the arms
  • Rigorous workouts or exercise is another leading cause of muscle twitching in the arms. Exercise routines such as weightlifting can put undue strain on the muscles. In addition, most individuals are always in a hurry to build muscles, which leads to increased strenuous exercises for longer periods of time. Even lengthy and taxing aerobic exercises can trigger muscle palpitations. Such overuse of the muscles can lead to increased fatigue of the muscles that interfere with the normal contraction of the muscles, paving the way for muscle twitching. The arms are especially vulnerable to muscle twitching due to excessive workouts such as bench press, bicep curls, pull-ups, power hiking, etc.
  • Excessive intake of caffeine in the form of coffee, cola or tea can precipitate muscle twitching. In addition, excessive intake of alcohol and other such intoxicating beverages can also contribute to the development of muscle twitches in the arm.
  • A diet that is deficient in calcium and magnesium can make the body increasingly susceptible to muscle twitches. Additionally, deficiencies in vitamin B12 and vitamin B6 can lead to increased instances of muscle twitching, particularly in the arms.
  • Muscle twitching of the upper arm can also be a sign of an electrolyte imbalance in the body. Minerals such as chloride, magnesium, calcium, etc are components of the electrolytes present in the body and their right balance is essential for the various muscles to contract normally.
  • Abuse or excessive use of prescribed medications such as diuretics that are used to treat medical conditions such as heart problems and high blood pressure can lead to muscle twitching in the arm and other areas. In addition, estrogens and corticosteroids can also cause muscle twitching as a side effect.
  • The presence of neurological disorders such as spinal muscular atrophy and muscular dystrophy can also lead to muscle twitching. Such neurological disorders lead to the compression and damage of muscle nerves resulting in recurrent movements of the muscles. They may also be accompanied by other symptoms such as muscle wasting and weakness of the muscles.

Treatment and cure of muscle twitching in the arms

  • Individuals should take care and avoid strenuous workouts for prolonged periods to prevent instances of muscle twitching in the arms.
  • Increased stress and tension in the muscles can be alleviated by meditation and yoga. Such activities also lead to the relaxation of the tense muscles.
  • A healthy diet that is rich in magnesium, calcium and other electrolyte components can go a long way in the prevention of muscle twitching in arm. Individuals can also consider the intake of vitamin and mineral supplements to provide relief from the muscle twitches.
  • Muscle twitching in the arm and other areas generally tends to be harmless and disappear once the aggravated and worn-out muscles relax. However, in cases where muscle twitches are caused due to neurological disorders and are accompanied by muscle cramps, then a visit to a doctor is absolutely essential for proper evaluation and diagnosis.
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