A recovery story of a Bell’s Palsy patient:
Meera (Name changed) 28-year-old female dancer, had sudden inability to perform facial movements on the one side of her face. She gives a history of long duration exposure to extreme cold weather. Being a dancer, facial expressions were crucial for her. She noticed some deviation in the mouth. Also, she was not able to smile, frown and perform other expressions effortlessly. The physical disability of not being able to seal her mouth while eating and dribbling of water while drinking was quite stressful for her.
She visited her family doctor and was then diagnosed with Bell’s Palsy. Meera had heard of this condition for the first time. The doctor prescribed her with oral steroids, vitamin supplementation and was referred for Physiotherapy after 15 days. Along with medications, facial care, eye care use of goggles were prescribed.
In the Physiotherapy department her thorough evaluation was done. She was started with Quantum Resonance Therapy. After around 11 sessions of QRT and 20 days of regular exercise, there was 70% improvement in her facial movements. Along with this various facial exercises were prescribed and taping was done. Some Proprioceptive Neuromuscular Facilitation (PNF) techniques were used. This helped her in the improvement.
Now she can elicit most of the facial expressions effortlessly. Also opening and closing of eyes is improved. Her speech is clear. She is able to drink water and eat food without any difficulty.
Overview of Bell’s Palsy
Bell’s Palsy or Facial Palsy is the sudden paralysis/weakness of one side of the face. The incidence is about 20 in 100,000 people and has a peak incidence between the ages of 15 and 40 years. (1)
The causes remain unknown and it is commonly known as idiopathic facial palsy. Other risk factors may include viral infections, autoimmune disorders, upper respiratory tract infections such as cold or flu.
Common Symptoms include –
- Weakness or paralysis of the half side of the face.
- Dropping of the eyelid.
- Inability to close the eyelid completely.
- Dropping of the corner of the mouth.
- Dribbling of saliva
- Inability to completely close the mouth while eating
- Pain in or behind the ear.
- Dryness of the eye.
The treatment is mainly focused on early recovery and reducing long-term complications. It includes drug therapy and physiotherapy management.
Quantum Resonance Therapy, a patented physiotherapy, is a combination of PEMF Therapy (Pulsed Electromagnetic Field Therapy) and MMO (Magneto Mechanical Oscillator) can be used in the treatment of Bell’s Palsy.
It is believed that the swelling and inflammation of the nerve which controls the muscles of the one side of the face is the etiology behind Bell’s Palsy. PEMF Therapy has been shown to be effective in reducing the inflammation, swelling and pain associated with this condition. Once the swelling and inflammation subsides, early recovery of the functions can be expected.
MMO is a hand held oscillatory device which produces health frequency. This device can be applied over the face to promote lymphatic drainage, reduce swelling and prevent tightness of the muscles and degradation of the muscles because of disuse.
Along with QRT certain other physiotherapy interventions such as facial exercises, mirror biofeedback, neuromuscular retraining and Proprioceptive Neuromuscular Facilitation Techniques can be used to promote full recovery of patients with Bell’s Palsy.
Fight against Bell’s palsy and become as expressive as Meera.
1. Bell’s Palsy