Bell’s palsy treatment
Bell’s palsy treatment should start as soon as the first symptoms of the disease aroused. Recent studies have shown that steroids are one of the most effective Bell’s palsy treatment and that an antiviral drug such as acyclovir used to fight viral infections, combined with an anti-inflammatory drug such as the steroid prednisone, used to reduce inflammation and swelling may be effective in improving facial function by limiting or reducing damage to the nerve. These drugs should be given within 24 hours of the onset of paralysis. Lubricants for the eye and night time patching may be necessary to protect the eye.
A variety of non-pharmacologic measures have been used in Bell’s palsy treatment like natural remedies including home treatment, exercises, and acupuncture. Supplementation with cell signaling molecules has shown interesting, drug-free possibilities.
Conventional treatments consist of various medications including antibiotics and steroids. Various studies however have suggested that acupuncture is beneficial for facial palsy. Acupuncture for Bell’s palsy relieves the symptoms and restores the appearance of the face.
What is Bell’s palsy?
Bell’s palsy aka facial palsy is named after Sir Charles Bell, a 19th-century Scottish surgeon who was the first to describe the condition. Bell’s palsy is a form of temporary facial paralysis resulting from damage or trauma to one of the two facial nerves, it is the most common cause of facial paralysis worldwide and one of the most common neurological disorders involving a cranial nerve.
Bell’s palsy, also known as idiopathic facial palsy, is an acute facial paralysis that results in muscle weakness on one side of the face, which is usually noticed around the mouth and eyes. It is believed to be caused by inflammation of the facial nerve (7th cranial nerve), the paralysis results in distortion of the face and interferes with normal functions such as eating, smiling, and closing eyes. The progress from an onset of symptoms to maximal weakness usually occurs with three days and occasionally within one week.
Bells palsy has been documented in patients of all ages, with peak incidence observed in the 40s. The annual rate of occurrence of Bell’s palsy is about 20 per 100,000 population and the rate increases with age. In the United States, around 40,000 people are affected by Bell’s palsy every year. It is commonly seen in young adults, pregnant women, and patients with diabetes. Onset is rapid and in 80% to 90% of patients, it subsides spontaneously with complete recovery. Complications of facial palsy are ranging from incomplete eyelids’ closure to long-term complications such as permanent facial weakness with muscle contractures.
Facial palsy can affect anyone, but rarely affects people under the age of 15 or over the age of 60. The condition is more commonly seen in young adults, and persons of Japanese descent have a slightly higher incidence of the condition. Onset is rapid and in 80% to 90% of patients, it subsides spontaneously with complete recovery by 8 weeks.
It is more common in pregnant women, people recovering from a viral infection, and people with diabetes. Recurrences which occur in about 20% of cases may appear on either side of the face.
Bell’s palsy symptoms
The rapid onset of mild weakness or even total paralysis on one side of the face occurring within hours. Possible signs are aching of the jaw, or behind the ear and mouth droop. Taste perception can be distorted and there is a sensitivity to sound. Bell’s palsy can interrupt the eyelid’ natural blinking ability, leaving the eyes exposed to irritation and drying. The symptoms are drastic! Inability to close the eye all the way causes extreme dryness, which affects vision and the ability to get adequate sleep.
Patients are walking around constantly applying eye drops. The closing of the mouth is affected as well and it makes it impossible to drink liquids and to control saliva production.
“What I hear from my patients most of all”, Dr. Tsan says “is the embarrassment of being in the world with people and not being able to communicate at full capacity.” We take it for granted”, Dr. Tsan continue, “how significant facial expressions are, when trying to make our way in the world.”
Everyone who suffers from facial palsy should seek out the help ASAP and get acupuncture treatment is one of the best choices you can make. Acupuncture can help tremendously when it comes to rehabilitating the muscles of the face.
The most common Bell’s palsy symptom is the drooping of the affected side of the face, due to the malfunction of the facial nerve. The symptoms come on suddenly. The most common Bell’s palsy symptoms are:
- Facial muscle weakness or paralysis of the facial muscles on one side of the face.
- An inability to completely close the eye on the side of the paralysis
- A constantly watery eye or a constantly dry eye
- Inability to raise the eyebrow on the affected side
- Lower eyelid extremely drooped, allowing more of the eye surface to be exposed to dust, dirt, and water.
- Pain in or near the ear
- Sensitivity to sound in one ear (Hyperacusis)
- Facial tingling.
- Drooling from the corner of the mouth.
- The disappearance of the wrinkles on the affected side.
- Expressionlessness on the affected side.
- Impaired speech.
- In rare cases, it can affect the nerves on both sides of the face.
Causes of Bell’s palsy
Bell’s palsy causes could be different. This condition occurs when there is a block on the 7th cranial nerve by an inflammatory reaction which may be the result of; an infection, a tumor, hemorrhage, meningitis, hypertension, local trauma, or Lyme disease. Often people with this problem have a deficient immune system possibly due to genetics, unresolved or chronic illness, improper diet, and exhaustion, exposure to toxic chemicals or drugs, or undue physical and emotional stress. The most common cause of Bell’s palsy is infection (viral or bacterial)
Diagnosis of Bell’s palsy
Though there are many features associated with Bell’s palsy, there is no exactly known etiology. Its differential diagnosis is essential. Careful rule out of the possibilities of other conditions with similar manifestations is vital and only medical doctor can differentiate it properly.
Bell’s palsy diagnosis based on clinical presentation and exclusion of other reasonable possibilities. Patients often fear that they have suffered a stroke, but Bell’s palsy is not related to stroke. Electromyography helps to diagnose Bell’s palsy and determine nerve damage while blood tests are used to rule out acute causes such as Sarcoidosis or Lyme’s disease. If the cause of your symptoms isn’t clear, your doctor may recommend other tests, including:
- Occasionally, magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) or computed tomography (CT) may be needed to rule out other possible sources of pressure on the facial nerve, such as B. a tumor or a skull fracture.
- This test can confirm the presence of nerve damage and determine its severity. An Electromyography (EMG) measures the electrical activity of a muscle in response to stimulation and the type and speed of electrical impulses along a nerve.
Natural remedies for Bell’s palsy treatment
Natural remedies for Bell’s palsy can help strengthen the facial nerve and reduce pain. The condition is often associated with diabetes, high blood pressure, injury, Lyme disease, and multiple sclerosis. Natural remedies for Bell’s palsy can work to reduce Bell’s palsy symptoms.
Listed below are Bell’s palsy natural treatment
Home remedies for Bell’s palsy treatment
Home remedies for Bell’s palsy are one of Bell’s palsy natural treatments that are easy to achieve at home. Listed below are different methods of home treatment for Bell’s palsy
- Moist heat is a popular home treatment for Bell’s palsy. The use of warm cloth can help reduce the “pain” and discomfort associated with Bell’s palsy. Add an essential oil such as lavender, rose, ylang-ylang, or chamomile to a warm cloth and use the compress whenever pain appears or you want to relieve tension.
- Castor oil is a natural remedy for Bell’s palsy that is known to help improve circulation, prevent the growth of bacteria, and support the lymphatic system. Using a castor oil compress may help with healing by enhancing blood flow to the affected areas. Warm one tablespoon of castor oil and massage it onto your face. Cover your face with a warm, damp washcloth and leave it on for 20-30 minutes. Use the compress twice a day.
- Meditation is one of Bell’s palsy home treatments that can help relieve muscle tension and chronic pain by reducing stress. Taking a few minutes each day to slow down and focus on positive energy may help relieve anxiety.
Taking over-the-counter pain relievers.
- Aspirin, ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin IB, others) or acetaminophen (Tylenol, others) are Home treatment for Bell’s palsy that may help ease your pain.
- Supplements like vitamin B6 is one of the home remedies for Bell’s palsy treatment that is associated with eye health and nervous system health, which makes it an important part of Bell’s palsy natural treatment. Foods rich in Vitamin B6 include chickpeas, potatoes, bananas, pistachios, avocado, sunflower seeds, and sesame seeds.
- Zinc is a Home treatment for Bell’s palsy known for its ability to heal wounds and boost immune system response. Adding zinc-rich foods to your diet can help your body heal from the underlying condition that is causing your symptoms. Try spinach, kidney beans, flax seeds, pumpkin seeds, and watermelon seeds.
Exercises for Bell’s palsy
Even though Bell’s palsy will disappear on its own in most cases, exercise for Bell’s palsy can be used to speed up the process. The majority of these exercises for Bell’s palsy are simply a matter of consciously recreating facial expressions. The good news is that these are simple, safe exercises that anyone can do unsupervised at any time of the day, making it easy to speed up the recovery process.
There are different exercises for Bell’s palsy treatment and rehabilitation which are:
Before you begin the facial exercises, it’s important to warm up and stimulate your muscles first. To correctly do these facial exercises, experts suggest sitting in front of a mirror so that you can see your face and watch your muscle movements.
- Begin by trying to move every part of your face slowly and gently.
- Use your fingers to gently lift your eyebrows. One side will lift higher than the other, but don’t apply too much force to the drooping side.
- Using your fingers, gently massage the different parts of your face, including your forehead, nose, cheeks, and mouth.
Nose and cheek exercises
After warming up, you can work in the area of your cheeks and nose. This area is important since any stiffness or weak muscles in this zone can affect the strength of the entire face as you recover.
- Using your fingers, gently push up the skin next to your nose on the affected side while trying to wrinkle your nose.
- Try to scrunch up your face, focusing on the cheeks and nose.
- Flare your nostrils and try to take some deep breaths through your nose. You can cover your unaffected nostril to force the affected muscles to work harder.
- Puff up your cheeks and blow the air out. Repeat this 10 times.
The next area that you can work on is your mouth, including your lips and tongue. Many people with Bell’s palsy find it difficult to eat and drink since muscle movements are limited. Some also find that they dribble or aren’t able to control their saliva, which can be stressful.
These exercises for Bell’s palsy treatment can help you to regain better control of your mouth. You can repeat them 30 times each, up to 4 times a day.
- Open your mouth as if you are going to smile and then close it. Then do the opposite and practice frowning.
- Gently pucker your lips and let them relax.
- Try lifting each corner of your mouth individually, one at a time. You can use your fingers to help lift the affected side.
- Stick out your tongue and then aim it down toward your chin.
People with Bell’s palsy may have difficulty closing their affected eye, which can be bothersome and makes it difficult to sleep. These facial exercises help you to regain control and function of the muscles surrounding the eyes.
- Practice raising your eyebrows up and down. You can use your fingers to lift the affected eyebrow.
- Look down and close your eye while gently massaging the eyelid and eyebrow.
- Alternate opening your eyes wide and then gently squeezing them shut.
Note: Exercises for Bell’s palsy are considered as one of the safest Bell’s palsy home treatment. However, you should not overexert your muscles. Plus, you don’t want to force the two sides of your face to collide. If you find the muscles moving or pulling during Bell’s palsy exercises, you should stop. Relax your muscles and get some rest.
Homeopathy for Bell’s palsy – effective natural facial palsy treatment
Homeopathy for Bell’s palsy is one of Bell’s palsy natural treatment that has been used to successfully treat several cases of Bell’s palsy. However, the results vary from person to person and the extent of nerve damage caused. This form of treatment not only treats visible symptoms, but affects the physical, mental, and emotional health of a person as a whole.
Listed below are homeopathy for Bell’s palsy medicine:
- This is the most preferred homeopathic remedy for Bell’s palsy caused by injury to a nerve. In addition to the symptoms of Bell’s palsy, the patient may complain of tingling or numbness and burning on the affected side of the face.
- Bell’s palsy can also be triggered by grief. In such cases, the homeopathic medicine Ignatia has proven to be very effective. It also corrects excessive saliva production and frequent cheek biting of the tongue when speaking and swallowing.
- Bell’s palsy caused by sudden bleeding can be treated with a homeopathic medicine cadmium sulfate. In such cases, the patient may have a contorted face and difficulty swallowing food and speaking properly. Also, he or she may not be able to close the eye on the affected side of the face.
Bacillinum and Causticum:
- The homeopathic medicines are prescribed for Bell’s palsy, which is caused by the removal of facial rashes. If you want to discuss a specific problem, you can consult a homeopath.
Aconite and Causticum:
- Homeopathic medicine Aconite is prescribed in the initial stages of this Bell’s palsy condition especially when paralysis seems to have set in after exposure to a cold draft. Patients who can benefit from aconite often also complain of a tingling sensation on the affected side of the face. On the other hand, causticum is prescribed to treat chronic cases of facial paralysis.
Acupuncture for Bell’s palsy
Acupuncture for Bell’s palsy treatment is a natural remedy for Bell’s palsy that may help lessen facial paralysis and facial disability in people with Bell’s palsy, according to a review of the scientific literature.
Acupuncture for Bell’s palsy stimulates the nerves and muscles, which can improve symptoms. The key is to find an acupuncture practitioner in your area with expertise in treating Bell’s palsy. The sooner you can begin acupuncture sessions, the better.
Acupuncture for Bell’s palsy well known as the most effective and harmless treatment for these medical conditions. The effectiveness of Acupuncture for Bell’s palsy is almost %100 if the patient seek treatment within the first week of symptoms onset.
In traditional Chinese medicine, Bell’s palsy is known as Zhong Feng which translates as “Wind Attack”. This condition was thought to be associated with an invasion of “wind” that causes an imbalance in the “Qi” – most important substance of the body – living energy and stagnation of blood.
The principle of acupuncture treatment is to expel this “wind” and enhance the movement of “Qi” and blood circulation. A number of Chinese studies had supported the therapeutic effect of acupuncture which was found to be benficial in the management of facial palsy. Reports had shown a minimum cure rate of 37 percent and the highest cure rate of 98 percent with an average of 81 percent.
Acupuncture for Bell’s palsy is often very successful in relieving the facial paralysis especially when Bell’s palsy treatment begins within the first week two weeks. The Acupuncture for Bell’s palsy uses natural pressure points on the body and is believed to relieve inflammation and nerve blockage by limiting swelling and blood stagnation.
The acupuncturist inserts small, thin needles into the skin in a number of acupuncture points throughout the face, limbs, and body.
Some of the key points located on the stomach, liver, gallbladder spleen, and large intestine meridians and thus needles will be inserted to the forehead, cheeks, and mouth areas of the face, as well as on patient’s hands, legs and feet.
There are no known side effects if acupuncture performed by a qualified, well-trained professional.
The objective of acupuncturists and TCM practitioners in treating facial palsy is to take out the “Cold Wind” from the affected meridians, improve the flow of blood and “Qi”. When these goals are achieved it will strengthen and nourish muscles and bring back normal function of the facial muscles and 7th cranial nerve.
Along with the improvement of the facila muscle function, treatment also is geared into strengthening the defense mechanisms of the body in general and the immune system particularly.
The acupuncture points on the face that are chosen for treatment, physiologically correspond to muscles of the face that are paralyzed. Additional acupuncture points may be treated based on the symptoms manifested and the medical history of each particular patient.
Besides Acupuncture for Bell’s palsy, other TCM procedures (cupping, electro-acupuncture, laser, ear acupuncture, and moxibustion) can be applied for Bell’s palsy treatment. Electro-acupuncture is a modern version of traditional acupuncture that stimulates needles to boost the effect. This method usually utilized in more complicated and chronic instances of Bell’s palsy.
Acupuncture treatment in the majority of clinical cases significantly improves the success rate and helps to resolve this medical condition.
Acupuncture for Bell’s palsy in Philadelphia
It is very important to find the best acupuncturist for the treatment of Bell’s palsy. The inexperienced practitioner may use too strong stimulation that causes facial muscle contraction. The acupuncturist that works under the supervision of a medical doctor would be your best choice. Understanding of the anatomy and physiology of 12 pairs of cranial nerves is very important in the treatment of Bell’s palsy. Don’t settle for less – get the best. Enter into the Google search box keyword acupuncture for Bell’s palsy near me and see our clinic on the top of the page.
At the Philadelphia Acupuncture Clinic, all treatments were performed under the strict supervision of Victor Tsan, MD. With more than 40 years of experience in medicine and surgery, Dr. Tsan helps his associates with diagnostic and treatment protocols. Each patient at Philadelphia Acupuncture Clinic must see Dr. Tsan prior to treatment with any of his associates. This is our rule and we are staying with our patients.