What is Bell’s Pasly?
Bell’s Palsy is a partial or complete paralysis to the muscles on one side of your face caused by the dysfunction of the 7th cranial nerve. The nerve is damaged by inflammation causing it to become enlarged. Where the nerve exits the skull through the stylomastoid foramen, the swelling restricts the blood supply to the nerve causing ischemia – reduced blood supply and thus oxygen to the nerve. In most cases this is temporary, improving in a few weeks and resolving in 6 months.
What are the causes?
The exact cause of the condition is not clear, however, it is often related to a viral infection. Viruses that have been implicated with Bell’s Palsy are:
- Herpes simplex
- Chickenpox and shingles
- Influenza B
- Hand-foot-and-mouth disease
What are the risk factors?
- Ear Infection
- Upper Respiratory tract infection
What are the symptoms of Bell’s Palsy?
- Rapid onset of weakness or paralysis unilaterally on your face
- Facial droop and trouble making facial expressions such as smiling or closing your eyes
- Affected eye more open (appears larger) than unaffected
- Lack on line on forehead on affected side
- Lack on blinking with affected eye
- Affect side of the mouth lower than unaffected
- Pain around your jaw or in/behind your ear on the affected side
- Decrease in tear and saliva production – dry eyes and/or mouth
- Loss of taste
Treatment for Bell’s Palsy
The main treatment for this condition is the use of corticosteroids. Physiotherapy helps prevent the muscles from contractures or shortening through:
- TECAR Therapy
- Soft tissue massage
- Heat therapy
- A tailored home exercise program
- Neuromuscular retraining
- Kabat technique
- Mime therapy
How to book an appointment?
If you think you have Bell’s Palsy, or are looking for a physiotherapist near me, the team at Vitalis Physiotherapy can assess your condition to tailor a unique rehabilitation plan to aid in your pain relief and recovery.
All you need to do is just give us a call on 0410 559 856 and request an initial appointment. Please let our friendly reception staff know the background and severity of your condition.
You can visit our FAQs for more information about appointments at Vitalis Physiotherapy.