Facial Paralysis | Bell’s Palsy
Facial paralysis | Bell’s Palsy is a paralysis or severe weakness of the facial muscles on one side of the face. It’s believed to be due to a swelling of the nerve that controls the muscles the face.
Symptoms often appear first thing one morning. A person wakes up and finds that one side of their face does not move. The person may find that they suddenly cannot control their facial muscles, usually on one side. The affected side of the face tends to droop. The weakness may also affect saliva and tear production, and the sense of taste.
The facial nerves control blinking, opening and closing of the eyes, smiling, salivation, lacrimation and frowning. They also connect with the muscles of the stapes, a bone in the ear involved in hearing.
When the facial nerve malfunctions, the following symptoms can occur-
• sudden paralysis/weakness in one side of the face
• irritation in the eye because it does not blink and becomes too dry
• changes in the amount of tears the eye produces
• difficulty closing one of the eyelids
• difficulty with facial expressions
• drooping in parts of the face, such as one side of the mouth
• drooling from one side of the mouth
• sense of taste may become altered
• pain in front or behind the ear on the affected side
• an affected ear may cause sensitivity to sound
The facial nerve controls most of the muscles in the face and parts of the ear. The facial nerve goes through a narrow gap of bone from the brain to the face.
If the facial nerve is inflamed, it will press against the cheekbone or may pinch in the narrow gap. This can result in damage to the protective covering of the nerve. If the protective Covering of the nerve becomes damaged, the signals that travel from the brain to the muscles in theface may not be transmitted properly, leading to weekend or paralysed facial muscles, known as Facial paralysis | Bell’s Palsy.
It may result when a virus, usually the herpes virus, inflames the nerve.
Other viruses that have been linked to Bell’s palsy include-
• Chickenpox and shingles virus
• Mumps virus
• Influenza B
• Cord sores and genital herpes virus
• Epstein-Barr virus or EBV, responsible for mononucleosis
The risk of Bell’s palsy is higher for the –
• people aged between 15 to 60 years
• women during pregnancy, especially in the third trimester
• women who gave birth less than one week ago
• those people with diabetes or upper respiratory diseases
A mild case of Bell’s palsy normally disappears within a month. Recovery from a more severe case involving involving total paralysis varies.
Complications may include-
• Irreversible damage to your facial nerve.
• Abnormal regrowth of nerve fibres.This may result in involuntary contraction of certain muscles when you are trying to move others – eg. When you smile, the eye on the affected side may close.
• Partial or complete blindness of the eye that won’t close due to excessive drynessand scratching of the clear protective covering of the eye (Cornea).
There’s no specific test for Bell’s palsy. Your doctor will look at your face and ask you to move your facial muscles by closing your eyes, lifting your eye brow, showing your teeth and frowning, among other movements.
If the cause of your symptoms is not clear, your doctormay recommend other tests ,including –
• Electromyography (EMG)
• Imaging scans like MRI or CT scan
Most people with Bell’s Palsy recover fully – with or without treatment. There is no one size fits all treatment forBell’s Palsy, but your doctor may suggest medications or physical therapy to help speed up your recovery. Surgery is rarely an option for Bell’s palsy.
Commonly used medications to treat Bell’s Palsy include-
¤ Corticosteroids such as prednisone
¤ Antiviral drugs such as valacyclovir or acyclovir
• Physical Therapy –
Paralysed muscles can shrink and shorten, causing permanent contractures. A physical therapist can teach you how to massage and exercise your facial muscles to help prevent this from occuring.
• Surgery –
Rarely, plastic surgery may be needed to correctlasting facial nerve problems.
According to Ayurveda, facial paralysis | Bell’s Palsy can be corellated with Ardita. Ayurvedic pathogenesis of Ardita said that vata is vitiated and occluded in the corresponding nerves, arteries and veins, situated in the face. This declines the functioning of the nerves of the nearby area. Thus, the face is turned to one of the sides and the disease condition appears.
Line of treatment –
¤ Abhyanga (Oil Masssage) –
¤ Mridu Swedana ( Mild sweating )-
¤ Nasya karma –
¤ Shirodhara –
¤ Lahsuna- It is very good in normalizing Vata , clearing the body channels from obstructions and stimulates facial nerves by improving blood circulation.
¤ Nirgundi – It is good for relieve nerve pain and to improve muscle strength.
¤ Eranda –It is one of the powerful herbs to balance vata and improve nerve strength.
¤ Lavanga – Regular intake of 3-4 drops of clove oil helps to strengthen nerves.
¤ Mustard – If the palsy is caused due to blockage of artery and after the routine treatments, to avoid further blockage and to improve local blood circulation, mustard-internal usage and mustard oil for massage is useful.
¤ Masha(Black gram)- If the paralysis is caused due to weak nerves, then blackgram can be used inform of many dishes and its oil can also be used.
¤ Bala – It is one of the prime herb to balance Vata.
¤ Rasna – It is well known herb to balance Vata and strengthen nervous system.
¤ Mahanarayana Taila
¤ Saindhavadi Taila
¤ Vishagarbha Taila
¤ Prasarini Taila
¤ Ekangaveer Ras
¤ Mahayograj gugglu
¤ Tryodashang gugglu
¤ Maharasnadi kwath
¤ Rasona pinda
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