Bell’s Palsy is a condition in which facial muscles on one side of the face become weak or paralyzed, causing the face to drop or stiffen on that side. Other symptoms may include the inability to close or blink your eye on the affected side, inability to form wrinkles, difficulty chewing, inability to whistle, drooling, increased sensitivity to sound, decreased taste sensation, pain and sometimes headache. You may experience some or all of the symptoms and they may present themselves quickly or may take a few hours.

The major cause for Bell’s Palsy is trauma to the facial nerve, also known as the seventh cranial nerve. Our face contains various small muscles that help us produce facial expressions such as smiling, frowning, wrinkling your forehead, clenching your teeth, closing and opening your eyes and puffing your cheeks. These muscles are controlled by the seventh cranial nerve or facial nerve.. This nerve is also involved in taste sensations, dampening the sounds that reach your ears and stimulating the tear ducts that produce tears. Irritation of this nerve, usually due to a severe cold or viral infections, can lead to inflammation of the nerve and render its ability to function. Reduced functioning of the facial nerve leads to weakness or paralysis of the muscles it controls, causing symptoms of Bell’s Palsy. It can also be associated with any head injury, tumours of the face or even stroke.

  • The medical treatments for Bell’s Palsy usually include oral corticosteroids and antiviral drugs.
  • Along with the medical treatment options, rehabilitation of the weak muscles can help with a speedy recovery.
  • Physiotherapy for Bells’ Palsy includes a wide range of interventions including neuromuscular training of the paralysed muscles, mirror feedback, use of custom splints or taping to restore facial symmetry, mime therapy, trophic electrical stimulation, and re-education of the affected muscles.
  • Bell’s palsy is not considered permanent, but it requires medical attention and therapy to be completely resolved. So make sure that you do not ignore the symptoms of Bell’s Palsy.

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