Often mistaken as a stroke, Bell’s Palsy is a rather common ailment which can affect children and adults. Like a stroke, the most common symptom of Bell’s Palsy would be the sudden weakness on one side of your face, thus creating the loop side, or down side on the left or right half. Unlike a stroke, fortunately, this only affects your face.
Most patients suffering from Bell’s Palsy would head straight to the A&E (Accident & Emergency) Ward of the hospital upon realizing the tilted face, only to find relief to know that it is not a stroke.
Fortunately, Bell’s Palsy is mostly temporary. Recovery takes 2 weeks to up to 6 months depending on your own body’s ability to fight and how much you take good care of it. Doctors may prescribe Steroids-based medications and some anti-viral drugs to help in the recovery. Please adhere to your doctor’s advice! However, do take note of the side effects that Steroids medications that cause. Pay close attention to your body during the first 2 weeks upon administering.
Here are several notable tips that you can take immediately in the meantime while waiting for recovery;
Protect Your Ears
The affected side of your ear will tend to be extra sensitive or loud as compared to the other. Use an ear plug to protect it. We highly recommend Mack’s Ultra Soft Foam Earplugs. These are very comfortable and it comes in different sizes.
Wear An Eye Mask / Eye Tape Over Your Affected Eye, or Wear Sunglasses At The Very Least
Your effected eye will not be able to close properly, exposing it to dust or even air pollution if you are living in haze-prone areas. Many develop eye rashes, irritations, allergies, frequent tearing or even having an eye infection. Wearing an eye mask or an eye tape (usually provided by the doctor upon diagnosis) will help. Should these be unavailable, wear shades or goggles to prevent any foreign particles from entering your eyes.
Constantly Administer Eye Drops or Moisturizers
While you are at the doctor’s or Pharmacy, get those eye moisturizers and eye drops. Get many of them, have them handy and readily accessible whenever you head outside. You will need them! Similasan Dry Eye Drops work wonders even for post-Bell’s Palsy patients.
Get A Ton of Rest!
Most importantly, listen to your body and get a good ton of rest. Your Steroids medications are probably making you tired most of the time. Sleep if you must. Take some time off from work or school to get a proper recovery.
The Road to Recovery
The road to recovery can be a lengthy and time-consuming process. To quicken Bell’s Palsy recovery, we introduce several proven techniques and herbal remedies;
Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) and Acupuncture
If you have access to a nearby Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) and Acupuncture Clinic, speak to its ‘Sinseh’ – a certified TCM Practitioner and discuss your condition to him. He will administer Acupuncture on certain nerve points of your face and other related parts of your body to gain inner strength and nourish your ‘Qi’. A patient usually has to go through 10-20 sessions depending on severity of Bell’s Palsy. Some patients will start to experience improvements between the first and fourth session of Acupuncture.
Facial massages not only aids in recovery, it also helps to re-activate some nerves affected by Bell’s Palsy. For Acupuncture patients, ask your ‘Sinseh’ for the pressure points that you can self administer when you are at home. Alternatively, there are several Youtube Videos that you can watch online to learn about these facial massages for Bell’s Palsy.
Vitamin B12 supports Brain Cells and Nerve Tissue repair – both of which are highly vital in your journey to Bell’s Palsy recovery. We recommend Jarrow Formulas, Methyl-B12. We found that this brand absorbs better than other forms of Vitamin B12 in the market today. For the minority of patients finding it difficult to swallow pills, they even have the lozenges version available!
Omega-3 Fish Oil
Supports cardiovascular and heart health as well. It is important to attain only EPA / DHA Omega-3 supplements. These helps improve your immunity system and function, of which may be low or lacking during this period of your Bell’s Palsy diagnosis. We highly recommend Now Foods, Omega-3 180 EPA / 120 DHA for a couple of reasons; the well-known and established brand name, relatively easy to swallow and for its high potency it has shown us.
Ultimately, do continue to pay a regular visit to your doctor for medical advice and for optimum recovery.
Have Bell’s Palsy? Drop us a note or leave a comment. Let us know if you have any questions.
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