Bell’s Palsy can be effectively treated with acupuncture and Chinese medicine.
While best treated early, good results can even be seen when the treatment of Bell’s Palsy begins years after the initial onset. If treated early, the results are often excellent, showing a clear reduction of signs and symptoms after just the first treatment.
Bell’s Palsy affects about 40,000 people in the US every year. Its onset is sudden and the condition is marked by one-sided impairment of motor function of the face. It is a type of acute facial paralysis caused by swelling or compression of the seventh cranial nerve, aka the facial nerve. Signs and symptoms include facial weakness/paralysis, an inability to close the eye completely, drooping of the corner of the mouth, drooling, difficulty eating and drinking, one-sided loss of taste sensation, an inability to make facial expressions such as smiling and frowning, dry eye and mouth, pain in or behind the ear, headache, muscle twitches of the face, sensitivity to sound, and irritation of the eye on the involved side.
According to modern biomedicine, the underlying cause remains unclear, although viral, inflammatory, autoimmune and vascular conditions are implicated.
According to Chinese medicine, a patient with Bell’s Palsy typically has an underlying weakness or deficiency in the digestive system, which then makes them more vulnerable to environmental stresses. Interestingly, it was observed long ago that Bell’s Palsy often developed after a person was directly exposed to a draft or windy weather conditions (today this could include exposure to drafts from fans or air conditioners). This important factor is often overlooked by modern medicine. It should be noted here there is an ancient concept still recognized today throughout East Asia: “wind is the mother of 10,000 diseases”, a concept we see played out quite clearly in Bell’s Palsy.
We can surmise from all of this that an underlying weakness in the digestion could lead to poor general nutritional intake, which then could have a multitude of negative effects on the immune system, nervous system, circulation, etc. Follow this with exposure to environmental stresses like cold and wind and it’s not hard to understand how Bell’s Palsy can develop.
In the treatment of Bell’s Palsy with acupuncture and Chinese medicine we address any underlying issues, such as digestive weakness, and simultaneously address the impaired motor function of the face by stimulating points around the face and head to improve circulation and neuromuscular function. These methods have shown to be incredibly effective at restoring the motor function of the face and resolving Bell's Palsy.
If you’ve been affected by Bell’s Palsy, don’t wait. Make an appointment today.