What is facial paralysis?
Facial paralysis is a loss of facial movement due to nerve damage. It can happen on one or both sides of the face, this disease can occur at any age. The onset of facial paralysis symptoms may be sudden (appearing overnight), or may appear over two or three days, it can include a combination of: facial paralysis on one side (rarely are both sides of the face affected); loss of blinking control on the affected side; decreased tearing; drooping of the mouth to the affected side; altered sense of taste; slurred speech; drooling; pain in or behind the ear.
What causes facial paralysis?
Facial paralysis is almost always caused by:
- Infection or inflammation of the facial nerve, which carries signals from the brain to the muscles of the face
- Infection of the brain or surrounding tissues, which sends signals to the muscles of the face
Facial paralysis is often due to Bell’s palsy. This is a condition in which the facial nerve becomes inflamed. No one knows exactly why Bell’s palsy occurs. It may be related to a viral infection of the facial nerve.
Other causes include:
- Infection of the brain or surrounding tissues
- Lyme disease
- Tumor that presses on the facial nerve
A thorough medical history and physical examination, including a neurological examination, are the first steps in making a diagnosis. This alone may be sufficient to diagnose Bell’s Palsy, in the absence of other findings. Additional investigations may be pursued, including blood tests such as ESR for inflammation, and blood sugar levels for diabetes. If other specific causes, such as sarcoidosis or Lyme disease are suspected, specific tests such as angiotensin converting enzyme levels, chest x-ray or Lyme titer may be pursued. If there is a history of trauma, or a tumour is suspected, a CT scan may be used.
Acupuncture Heals Facial Paralysis
Acupuncture is widely used in the treatment for peripheral facial paralysis (FP). The effect is significant and safe. Note: Face should avoid cold, when necessary, wear masks, blindfold.
The prognosis of peripheral facial paralysis is closely related to the degree of facial nerve injury, and EMG can be used as a supplementary examination of facial nerve injury degree.
The prognosis of facial paralysis caused by aseptic inflammation is better compared to the facial paralysis caused by virus. Occurrence of sequelae often happens if facial paralysis can’t be recovered within 3 to 6 months. Therefore, what important is to conduct acupuncture at the best timing of treatment, chances of recovery from facial paralysis within the first week are pretty high if acupuncture treatment is applied daily.