Acupuncture Speeds Healing for Bell’s Palsy Facial Paralysis

Acupuncture speeds recovery for Bell’s palsy & facial paralysis.

Image of an acupuncture model showing acupuncture points on the face commonly used to treat facial paralysis and for facial rejuvenation.
This acupuncture model shows acupuncture points commonly used to treat Bell’s palsy.

“From my first treatment, I knew Abba really cared about my well being. I had three treatments the first week and three treatments the second week. I noticed a slight change by the third treatment, and by the sixth treatment, I saw a tremendous improvement. The treatments helped me for a faster recovery.” Janet Herzog, Springfield, Missouri

The onset of Bell’s palsy is usually sudden and upsetting. People often wake up in the morning to find that one side of their face feels weird and droopy. They may think they’ve had a stroke. The good news is that Bell’s palsy symptoms usually resolve in a couple of months without intervention, and that acupuncture can significantly speed recovery. I have seen clients improve so dramatically in one treatment that we’ve both had a hard time believing the change in their face.

Bell’s palsy affects about 40,000 people in the United States every year, and one person in 65 will experience it in their lifetime. It’s caused by inflammation of the facial seventh cranial nerve, which wraps around the ears and facial muscles, affecting facial expressions, taste, and the muscles around the eyes. Symptoms include one-sided facial paralysis, pain, numbness, tearing eyes and impairment of taste. Bell’s palsy was named for Sir Charles Bell, a Scottish surgeon who studied the facial nerve and muscles 200 years ago. (I always wonder where these names come from!)

It’s best to begin acupuncture treatment as soon as possible after onset of Bell’s palsy symptoms – within days is ideal. And it’s usually best to do 2 or 3 treatments per week in the beginning, for a couple of weeks at least, to get the best results.

Acupuncture can also be helpful if you have lingering symptoms from a long-ago bout of Bells palsy. A client who’d had numbness on the left side of her face for five years following Bells palsy told me her numbness was almost gone after her first acupuncture treatment!