If patients are experiencing symptoms of facial paralysis, whether it’s Bell’s Palsy or another source, it is imperative that they seek medical attention right away. Whether it’s through the emergency room or their primary care doctor, it is important to work that up further because the symptoms do in fact overlap on other more serious conditions such as a stroke or a brain tumor. Symptoms of facial paralysis result from the inability of the muscles of facial expression to do their job. Things such as raising your eyebrows, closing your eyes and protecting the eyes themselves. Smiling. These are very critical functions of the facial muscles of expression. When they are lost other symptoms can occur. Things such as drooling, slurred speech, facial drooping, asymmetry, the cosmetic problems that go along with it and the inability to smile. These have a profound effect on patients. They have a very strong underlying psychosocial strain that results. Facial paralysis can present in a number of ways. Most often it’s a pretty sudden or a very specific time point when that occurs. However, in certain cases, for example, if there’s a tumor gradually growing and pressing on the facial nerve itself, this can result in initial weakness and ultimately a full blown paralysis if it is severe enough or not caught in time.
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