FAQ - Synkinesis
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Can acupuncture help with residual facial synkinesis?

I had bells palsy several yrs ago and developed residual facial synkinesis I would like to try acupuncture ? Any one have any experience with this
I know acupuncture works and it's backround. What I wanna know it its a good treatment for my condition and if so its effectiveness


I have treated Bell's Palsy with Traditional Chinese Medicine in my clinic with a good degree of success. It has been my experience that the longer the period between the Bell's episode and the acupuncture treatment the less likely full recovery can be accomplished.

Now that experience is with relationship to the facial paralysis and loss of function. However, you may experience better results because you have function.

I would recommend trying a minimum of 6 treatments with a licensed or certified acupuncturist in your area. If you see absolutely no changes in that time, then you may want to look into another course of action.  (+ info)

Synkinesis after severe Bell's Palsy?

I had shingles in Aug 2007 which resulted in bells palsy down the left side of my face. I was told that I would recover within 6 weeks, however the nerve damage was quite significant and I was put on a high dose of steroids to aid my recovery. This helped but even now I suffer with synkinesis which I am very conscious of because movement of my mouth affects my eye. Has anyone received treatment which was effective at relieving these symptoms? Its been nearly 2 years so im getting fed up with it now.

I haven't but have read a bit about it...
Botulinum Toxin (Botox) Injection for Reducing Synkinesis
Botulinum toxin injections have been found to reduce aberrant contractions of the facial muscles by blocking the acetylcholine receptor sites at the synapse. Botox temporarily paralyzes targeted areas of synkinesis, (usually orbicularis oculi inferioris, platysma and mentalis) with effects lasting 4 to 6 months. When combined with neuromuscular retraining, Botox provides a "window of opportunity" during which the patient can practice more normal movement patterns without synkinetic interference. In some cases, patients experience decreased synkinesis after the injection effects have worn off.  (+ info)

Does anyone know about Bell's Palsy? I need tips for getting rid of the synkinesis it has left behind? Please

I have had Bell's Palsy twice in my lifetime. Once at 14 on the right, and again at 15 on the left. The right side came and went in about 2 weeks, but the left side seemed to drag on much longer and so I tried to make it go away by doing exercises in the mirror. This caused my muscles to try to help each other by connecting to waeker muscles in my face and now when I blink my whole cheek moves, or when I smile my left eye tightens and almost tries to close. I heard Botox helps with this but from what I've heard the injections are quite expensive and have to be redone every coulpe of months along with doing exercises while the Botox is taking effect to make the weaker muscles stronger. I am 25 now and although most people say they only notice it when I point it out, I have caught children & adults staring at my face noticing something is wrong. I want to know if anyone has any techniques or exercises to help minimize my synkinesis or even get rid of it all together. PLEASE HELP

Bell's Palsy is a paralysis of the facial nerve resulting in inability to control facial muscles in the affected side. Several conditions can cause a facial paralysis, e.g. brain tumor, stroke, and Lyme disease. However, if no specific cause can be identified, the condition is known Bell's Palsy. Named after Scottish anatomist Charles Bell, who first described it, Bell's palsy is the most common acute mononeuropathy (disease involving only one nerve), and is the most common cause of acute facial nerve paralysis.

Bell's Palsy is defined as an idiopathic unilateral facial nerve paralysis, usually self-limiting. The trademark is rapid onset of partial or complete palsy, usually in a single day.

It is thought that an inflammatory condition leads to swelling of the facial nerve (nervus facialis). The nerve travels through the skull in a narrow bone canal beneath the ear. Nerve swelling and compression in the narrow bone canal are thought to lead to nerve inhibition, damage or death. No readily identifiable cause for Bell palsy has been found, but clinical and experimental evidence suggests herpes simplex type 1 infection may play a role.

Doctors may prescribe anti-inflammatory and anti-viral drugs. Early treatment is necessary for the drug therapy to have effect. The effect of treatment is still controversial. Most people recover spontaneously and achieve near-normal functions. Many show signs of improvement as early as 10 days after the onset, even without treatment.

Protect the eye. Often the eye in the affected side cannot be closed. The eye must be protected from drying up, or the cornea may be permanently damaged resulting in impaired vision.  (+ info)

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