A diagnosis of Bell's palsy typically means nerve damage to the facial muscles, most likely due to stress, whiplash, stroke, or other brain trauma. Returning to daily life with this impairment is no easy task. Don't worry! We are here to help you overcome this condition.
Despite the short-term nature of Bell's palsy, proper treatment and time can allow for recovery. If experiencing symptoms of this condition, read on for effective tips on how physiotherapy can help eliminate it.
There are two main forms of physical therapy: general and targeted. General physiotherapy focuses on boosting movement and strength in the body; meanwhile, targeted treatments address specific conditions and manage their symptoms directly with methods like ultrasound or electrotherapy.
General Physiotherapy for Bell's Palsy
General physiotherapy treatment is focused on increasing your body's mobility and strength. It is beneficial for Bell's palsy, as it helps to strengthen the facial muscles and improve circulation in that area, thereby relieving pain and improving your ability to complete daily tasks like talking, eating, and brushing your teeth.
Your physical therapist may suggest various methods to alleviate your symptoms, such as:
Cold Compress - This can help reduce pain and inflammation.
Temperature Treatments - Moist heat and cold packs are common forms of temperature therapy.
Stimulation - Electrical stimulation provided by a device can help increase strength and reduce pain.
Swallowing and chewing exercises - These can help you to improve your diet and address swallowing difficulties.
Targeted Physiotherapy for Bell's Palsy
Physiotherapists often use targeted therapies such as ultrasound or electrotherapy to help treat particular conditions and their symptoms. They may also teach self-massage techniques to accelerate recovery from Bell's palsy. Therapies for Bell's palsy may include:
Electrical Current Treatment - Electric currents applied to the skin can reduce pain and muscle contraction, with adjustable intensity to meet your needs.
Manual Therapy Techniques - Your therapist can provide gentle pressure to the area, which has been shown to lessen pain.
Transcutaneous Electrical Nerve Stimulation (TENS) - This therapy involves applying low-voltage electrical stimulation to reduce pain.
Ultrasound Treatment - It's been demonstrated that this can boost blood flow to the face and may bring relief.
Targeted Exercise to Overcome Bell's Palsy with Physiotherapy
Once you have a diagnosis of Bell's palsy and a care plan that includes physiotherapy, adding regular exercise to your daily routine is key. Any initial pain or discomfort will decrease as you make progress in your recovery.
Generally, getting therapy sooner will lead to quicker progress.
It may take up to a year for full recovery from Bell's palsy, but substantial development can be seen within 6-12 weeks. To aid in recovering, here are some suggested workouts:
Swallowing Exercises can help you to eat better and alleviate any swallowing difficulties.
General Exercises such as stretching, walking, and yoga can boost blood flow to the face and benefit your overall health.
Massage Therapy can help reduce pain and loosen tightness in the face through self-massages.
Cupping Therapy is a method of relieving pain and promoting circulation by placing suction cups on the skin.
Physiotherapy Tips to Manage Bell's Palsy
Pregnant women and individuals of all ages can safely undergo physiotherapy, but there are certain precautions they should keep in mind while healing. These include:
- Avoiding strenuous exercises that impact your jaw. Begin with simple movements and increase the intensity as your symptoms improve.
- Avoiding excessively hot or cold temperatures as they can reduce blood circulation in your face and worsen your symptoms.
Once you've been diagnosed with Bell's palsy, it can be daunting to think of how to adjust and return to your everyday activities. However, with the right treatment and patience, you can recover quickly. When you've been diagnosed with Bell's palsy, start a physical rehabilitation program straight away to assist in boosting circulation in your face and alleviating pain and tightness.
To further the healing process, make sure to incorporate daily exercise into your therapy plan. Additionally, avoid extreme temperatures, brush and floss regularly and use a mouthguard when necessary. With a little bit of hard work, you'll be on the way to overcoming Bell's palsy and getting back to normal life quicker than expected.
Contact Amped Physiotherapy to schedule an appointment to resolve your Bell's Palsy today.