Chiropractic care can be an effective treatment for Bell’s palsy. Bell’s palsy is a form of temporary facial paralysis that is caused by facial nerve damage or trauma. An average of 40,000 people in the U.S. are affected annually by this condition.
Although it usually affects one side of the face, it can affect both sides.
What are the symptoms?
- Mild weakness to total paralysis on one side of the face
- Facial droop
- Difficulty making facial expressions
- Pain around the jaw or in or behind your ear on the weak or paralyzed side
- Increased sensitivity to sound on the weak or paralyzed side
- Decrease in taste bud function
- Irregularities in the amount of tears and saliva produced
What are the causes?
There isn’t an exact cause for Bell’s palsy but it is believed to be caused by a viral infection which are also linked to the following viruses.
- Cold sores and genital herpes
- Chickenpox and shingles
- Infectious mononucleosis
- Cytomegalovirus infections
- Respiratory illnesses
- German measles
- Flu (influenza B)
- Hand-foot-and-mouth disease
Chiropractic Care for Bell’s Palsy
Despite chiropractic care being the common treat for neck and back, a study found that it can be quite effective in reducing Bell’s palsy symptoms. The patient who was diagnosed with Bell’s palsy received chiropractic adjustments to her cervical and thoracic spine, muscle stimulation and hydruculation on her trapezius muscles bilaterally. Symptoms gradually decreased over 9 weeks of treatment. After a year the patient showed 90% improvement.
Another study found that chiropractic manipulation combined with low-level laser therapy was effective in restoring full facial movements in a patient with fracture facial paralysis caused by Bell’s palsy.
Research confirms that chiropractic care can provide effective results to individuals with Bell’s palsy.