Bell's palsy is a medical condition that affects many people. Often, this condition can appear as a surprise, and while it will likely go away on its own after a period of time, it can be distressing to those who get it. If you believe that you may have Bell's palsy, you shouldn't hesitate to book an appointment with your family doctor. There's generally no need to seek emergency care for what you suspect might be this condition. Your doctor will either confirm or deny that you have this nerve condition. If so, they'll be able to offer a few treatment ideas. Here are some signs that may indicate the presence of Bell's palsy.
The symptom that people associate with Bell's palsy the most is drooping on one side of the face. You might wake up and notice that one side of your face is sagging lower than the other and that you're not able to move this side as normal. For example, when you smile, you might be able to smile normally on one side of your face, but the smile will not carry over to the side that is drooping. The severity of the droopiness can vary between people. In some patients, it's quite subtle, while others experience significant droopiness.
Loss Of Taste
Bell's palsy can make it challenging to chew your food to some degree, but this isn't the only change that you'll notice in your mouth. A lot of people who develop this condition also complain of not being able to taste certain foods. You might find that some things taste milder or different than usual, but it's also possible that you can't taste things at all. A good way to confirm that you likely have Bell's palsy before you see your doctor is to eat something that you know is flavorful and see how well you can taste it.
Sensitivity To Sounds
One curious way that Bell's palsy may affect you is that you become more sensitive to sounds — specifically, with the ear that is on the droopy side of your head. You might find that certain sounds seem a lot louder than usual. For example, you may ask a family member to turn down the TV because it seems very loud, only for them to tell you that the volume is normal. If you have symptoms that seem consistent with Bell's palsy, visit your family doctor.
For more information, contact a doctor near you.