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Are you twitching in your sleep?

Many factors can cause involuntary muscle spasms while you are asleep. Also known as sleep myoclonus, twitching in sleep might wake you up suddenly due to the sudden jerk in your body. Although they’re common, some people experience intense muscle jerks. In this blog, we will mention why you’re twitching in your sleep.

Twitching in Sleep Causes

Hypnic jerks, hypnic myoclonus, and all other names differ slightly but mean one thing in the end: involuntary muscle twitch. Although the exact cause is unknown, here are some reasons why it might happen:

  1. Anxiety & Stress: Dealing with stress and anxiety makes it difficult to relax at night, increasing the possibility of a hypnic jerk during sleep.
  2. Physical Stress: Your body must be under physical stress if you exercise before bedtime. As a result, it can have a stimulating effect, and the frequency of twitch increases. In short, physical stress can lead to twitching in sleep.
  3. Caffeine Intake: Did you have a little too much coffee before bed? Caffeine intake before sleeping does not allow your brain and body to fully relax. Coffee is a stimulant, and drinking it before sleeping causes involuntary muscle spasms.
  4. Stimulants: Drugs and alcohol are among the stimulants that increase twitching in sleep. Nicotine, too, results in muscle spasms in those who use vapes or cigarettes. Furthermore, according to a study, smoking can cause sleeping problems.
  5. Sleep or Neurological Disorder: While twitching in sleep may not be a sign of an underlying condition in many, nighttime jerks could indicate a sleep disorder like restless legs syndrome. Other than this, Parkison’s disease, Alzheimer’s disease, Epilepsy, Multiple Sclerosis, and other nervous system disorders may result in jerks as well.

Reducing Twitching in Sleep

You might be able to minimize twitching in your sleep in a few ways, such as:

  1. Low Caffeine Intake: Cutting back on caffeine intake in the late afternoon as well as evening can significantly reduce twitching in sleep.
  2. Stay Away From Stimulants: You might experience involuntary muscle movements in sleep due to alcohol, drugs, or other stimulants such as nicotine. Therefore, if you avoid taking these stimulants, it will prevent twitching throughout the night.
  3. Don’t Exercise Later in the Day: Yes, exercising is great for your overall health, and you should participate in physical activity when it is feasible for you, but doing it later in the day could be problematic. Exercise could trigger involuntary muscle jerks and affect your sleep. Thus, make sure you exercise earlier in the day for peaceful sleep.
  4. Practice Relaxation Techniques: You can really prevent twitching in sleep by participating in relaxation techniques. They help bring forth the relaxation response in your body, reducing the twitching with the help of breathing techniques and guided imagery.
  5. Visit a Sleep Specialist: If your condition is severe, a sleep doctor can also help with sudden jerks in your sleep. They will assess your condition and suggest an adequate treatment.


High intake of caffeine, alcohol, nicotine, and other factors can be responsible for twitching in sleep. However, you can visit a sleep expert to reduce the hypnic jerks and have a peaceful sleep. Talk to our team at Sleep & Headache Solutions by dialing 832-688-8886. You can also visit us at 13114 FM 1960 West, Ste 105B, Houston, TX 77065.

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