28 August 2011

Living with Bell's Palsy

Dealing with Bell's Palsy is very difficult, especially to the affected person. Though bells palsy is not contagious. However, most people are paranoid, thinking that the said facial paralysis is contagious and they're afraid to be near on a person with bells palsy.

What should an adult do while waiting to get better?
  • Always take your doctor's prescribed medicine.
  • Don't forget to put an artificial tears on your eye.
  • Don't skip your doctor's appointment and therapy session.
  • Though you can return to work as normal, but it's also good if you get enough rest.
  • Brush your teeth after every meal.
  • Always cover the eye on the affected area, when you're going to bed.
  • Exercise the muscles on the affected area of your face.
  • Be patience, and always think bright side.
Mostly, Bell's Palsy doesn't last long (mine just lasted for about 3 weeks), however some go beyond like 4 to 6 months. Be positive, just follow your doctor's advice so you'll be looking and feeling like yourself again soon.

What should a kid do while waiting to get better? 
  • Follow your doctor's advice (including your parents advice).
  • Get rest and eat healthy foods.
  • Brush your teeth after every meal.
  • Let your parents assist you when taking your medications and whenever you need an eye drops.
  • Remember to cover the eye on the affected area, when you're going to bed.
  • Be patience, you can play later with your friends. 
And for kids, parents support are badly needed. A kid might be upset about looking different than usual, or angry or sad that this happened to him or her. And patience is needed because of various doctor appointments. Then even more patience is needed while the kid waits for the problem to get better. Parents also must explain to the kid, that the Bells Palsy doesn't take long, he/she (kid) can play with his friends again sooner.

02 January 2011

How is Bell's Palsy Treated?

Lots of people treat Bell's Palsy lightly, thinking that those facial nerve often repairs itself without any treatments involved. Though the symptoms may go away and getting better each day, but if you want to speed up your recovery then you need to seek your doctor's advice regarding your condition and probably the ask the right medicine's prescription to help the nerve heals and return to normal.

Here are some popular treatment of Bell's Palsy or Facial Paralysis;

Every person that diagnosed with Bell's Palsy had difficulty blinking their eye of the affected side, so they need to take precautions against drying of the said eye on the side of facial weakness. And must keep the affected eye moist all the time.
  •  Lubricate eye drops such as artificial tears, eye ointment or eye gels.
  • An eye patch or a tape to help the affected eye closed and not expose to dust. Also an eye patch helps you to keep your eye close before and during your sleep.

Your physician may prescribe a steroid such as Prednisone for the first few days to a week of facial weakness to reduce the inflation and or to fight the virus to help speed up recovery. Along with the steroid, the doctor probably includes some vitamins such as Vitamin B1, B2 and B6.

Follow your doctor's advice accordingly and read the directions that includes on the medicine box carefully before taking any of those medication.

Complementary Therapies
Though the effectiveness of these treatments are still needs more research, acupuncture and physical therapies such as facial exercises, electrolytes and facial massage may be beneficial for facial paralysis or Bell's Palsy.

The use of electrolytes of Bell's palsy patients with blood pressure and blood glucose must be monitored by specialist.

Surgical Procedures
Mostly, Bell's Palsy patients fully-recovered naturally, and using surgical procedures to cure the facial paralysis is not necessary. However some patients especially those been with the symptoms for more than a year and without or with very slow improvements are opt to cosmetic and reconstructive surgery to improve their appearance.

Always consider to talk to your physician before considering these procedures.

05 December 2010

What are the Symptoms of Bell's Palsy?

The main symptom of Bell's Palsy is that one side of your face becomes weak or total paralysis, though it varies from person to person. The symptoms usually come on very quickly and reach their worst point within two to three days. Moreover, someone with Bell's palsy can look forward to getting better in a couple of weeks.

Signs of Bell's Palsy;

Sometimes mild ear ache or pain behind the ear is the first sign of Facial Paralysis.


Numbness on the affected side.

Dryness or watering of the eye.

Drooping of the corner of the mouth, causing difficulty in speaking.

Difficulty chewing or dribbling of food and drinks.

Alteration or loss of taste at the front of the tongue.

Difficulty closing and blinking of the affected eye.

Sensitivity on hearing, probably louder in the affected area.

Changes in the amount of saliva in the mouth.

If you have any of the symptoms mentioned-above, consult your doctor immediately. Although the list of symptoms may be caused by any problems other than Bell's Palsy.

How is Bell's Palsy Diagnosed?

Physicians and doctors often can diagnose Bell's palsy by just looking at the face of the affected person. But to make sure, doctors might do tests like an MRI or CT scan, which take pictures of the inside of the head, to make sure nothing else is causing the facial weakness.

Specialized doctors, such as neurologist will do an electromyography or EMG test to the patient to make sure that most nervous system works and also to check if it has some damage nerves. An EMG can show how well the face's muscles are receiving signals from the facial nerve. That's how doctors diagnose if a person have a bell's palsy.