Brisbane Acupuncture & Chinese Medicine

Bell's Palsy

Alternative treatment to Bell's Palsy

For some patient, they woke up with feeling of tingling or numbness to the face, mouth twitching, feeling weakness and /or drooping of the eyelid and corner of the mouth,  drooling and excessive tearing in one eye. 

Is this Stroke? 

** Patient needs to check **

Do you able to rise the arm to eye level?
Do you have control over your leg, arm and body?
Do you still think clearly? 

If the answer to the above questions are YES, then it might be Bell's Palsy Syndrome. 


In Western Medicine - Bell's Palsy

♦ The cause of Bell's Palsy is unknown but believes it might be relate to the virus infection over the facial nerves system causes facial nerve paralysis.
♦ The treatment to Bell's Palsy is mainly "steroid" or "No Treatment", as most people with Bell's palsy start to regain normal facial function within 3 weeks. However, the prognosis is unpredictable, it can take from 3 weeks to 1 year with or without the complications.

In Chinese Medicine - Bell's Palsy = External Pathogen attack

♦ In Chinese Medicine, we called Bell's Palsy is "Zhong - Fong" or "Mian Tang". Chinese medicine believes that the Bell's palsy is caused by external pathogen attacking the body and accompanies with low (weak) or stressed body energy (immune system). When pathogen enters the body, body immune is weak or under stress so that they not able to expel the pathogen. Then the pathogen will lodge onto skin surface and causes instant facial paralysis. The initial symptoms starting is skin surface numbness or tingling and then turns into severer condition such as facial spasm or paralysis.
How does Chinese Medicine help with Bell's Palsy?

Number 1: Dispel the external pathogen &
Number 2: Strength the immunity and improve the body energy.

Understanding the cause of Bell's Palsy in Chinese Medicine perspective, we can then work out the strategies on how to help with Bell's palsy symptoms and prevent it from getting worse and to increases its recovering rate. 
1st step: Dispel the external pathogen from skin surface.  Acupuncture is the most appropriate technique to dispel the pathogen from skin surface. Acupuncture will increase the blood and energy flow to the affected area thus arise the immune function and then dispel the pathogen. Another benefit from Acupuncture is that acupuncture could improve the muscle strength in face and encourage the recovery from facial paralysis symptoms.

2nd step: Improve energy and enhance the immune system. Chinese herbal medicine is uses to tonic the body energy, help to relax the body and enhances the immune function to against the pathogen. this will improve the prognosis from Bell's palsy. Especially for facial palsy that caused by virus, Chinese herbal medicine works well in dispel the virus from body.

How many treatment requires for Bell's palsy?

In Acute condition (less than 2 week): Prognosis Is well.

2 treatments per week and in most of past cases, 2-3 weeks of
treatments will be sufficient for acute Bell's palsy. However, the effectiveness of treatment is depend on the condition of Bell's palsy and how well the patient responding to Acupuncture. treatment.

In Chronic Condition (2 weeks ~ couple of years): Take more & longer treatment to improve the Prognosis.

The earlier the Bell's palsy patient receive the acupuncture the better the
prognosis would be. if just about 3 weeks after onset of Bell's palsy, 2
treatments per week for 2 weeks and when condition improved, then changes to 1 treatment per week and so on. 

However, if patient has Bell's palsy for more than 1 month to few months, years, the muscles became fatigue, the sensation of face became slow and the body energy got weaker, in this condition, Acupuncture may not be sufficient or it may take more than 3 months of treatments to get the face muscles become more sensitive or improves in its strength. in the mean time, we will suggest patient to combine the Chinese Herbal Medicine into the treatment strategy. Due to Chinese Herbs will help to tonic the body energy and helping blood circulation into face and repair the face muscles condition at the same time disperses the pathogen that residual in the body.

Level of Bell's Palsy makes any different in Acupuncture treatment? 

In general speaking, In Chinese Medicine perspective, the treatment efficiency is depends on the "timing" that the Bell's Palsy patient receives the Acupuncture treatment. 

Therefore, the earlier the Bell's palsy patient get acupuncture treatment  the better the prognosis. 

However, In some cases, if the patient has weaker body condition, even though patient receive the acupuncture within 2 weeks, we will still suggest the patient to take Chinese herbal medicine as well, simply because the body's energy is not strong enough to defeat the pathogen that attack the bodies. Therefore, we needs some other fuel to boost up the body conditions.