Bell’s Palsy: Causes, Symptoms and Treatment

Photo by Pezibear, CC0 1.0

When you think about the worst things that can happen to you, you might think about various diseases and medical conditions. However, you might not think about facial paralysis as one of the things that could affect you. However, this is something that affects many people around the world and might be in your future. That’s why it’s a good idea to go ahead and educate yourself as much as possible about Bell’s Palsy and its causes, treatment and symptoms to watch out for. Keep reading down below to learn some more.

  1. What Is It?

So, first of all, we should speak a bit about what Bell’s Palsy actually is. It’s the paralysis or weakness of the muscles on just one side of your face. This causes your face to start to droop because of the weak or damaged nerve endings on that one side of your face. This is going to affect everything from your sight to your tear production, so it’s a pretty serious condition. It should be noted that this specific condition comes on overnight, but will get better over the course of a few weeks. You might be surprised that this happens so suddenly, but that doesn’t necessarily mean that it’s the effect of a stroke or anything super serious.

  1. What Causes It?

Nobody really knows what directly causes this condition, but many people think that it might be caused by the herpes virus. However, this connection is not clear and should not be your first thought. If your doctor can’t find a specific reason for why you might be experiencing this nerve damage or weakness, then that’s when it’s diagnosed as Bell’s Palsy.

  1. What Do the Symptoms Look Like?

Let’s go through some of the most common symptoms for Bell’s Palsy down below. Make sure that you keep these in mind so you can determine whether or not this is something that you should head to the doctor for:

  • The main symptom that you should be on the lookout for is if one side of your face starts to droop, which is caused by the sudden paralysis or weakness of the nerves on this side of your face. You will most likely have a hard time closing your eye if that’s the case.
  • Sudden drooling that you can’t stop
  • Some eye problems that includes tearing up excessively and uncontrollably
  • You can’t taste anything
  • Sudden pain behind your ear or inside of it
  • Numbness on the side of your face that’s affected
  • An increase in the sensitivity of your hearing
  1. How Is It Diagnosed and Treated?

The first thing that your doctor is going to do when diagnosing you with Bell’s Palsy or not is asking you some questions about how you came across the symptoms. From there, he or she may conduct some extra physical and neurological exams to see if you actually have the condition or if the facial paralysis is being caused by something else entirely. If he or she still can’t figure out the exact cause, you might be referred to get an MRI or a CAT scan.

In terms of treatment, it’s actually quite simple when it comes to Bell’s Palsy! Most people who find themselves with the condition can find themselves fully recovered within a month or two without any other treatment. Especially if you can move part of your face, your recovery time is going to be even quicker. There are plenty of natural methods that you can use to speed up this process, though.

When it comes to Bell’s Palsy, there are plenty of misconceptions about the condition and what causes it. Be sure to keep the above article in mind and see your doctor ASAP if you believe you have the condition.

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