Causative Factors for Facial Nerve Damage
As the name suggests facial nerve damage is implied to a state where the facial nerves are damaged, hence affecting the normal functioning of it. The functioning of facial nerves get affected or they get damaged due to the following reasons or in such conditions.
- Trauma or injury to the head causing extra pressure and swelling on the nerve
- Ottis Media or infections of the middle ear
- Birth abnormalities
- Injury or facial and neck trauma
- Viral infection named Bell's Palsy
- Infections such as meningitis and herpes type 1
- Nerve damage after dental work is also possible
Facial Nerve Damage Symptoms
In severe cases such as complete paralysis of the face, normal facial movements and expressions such as closing the eyes, raising eyebrows and lip movements become impossible but mostly symptoms can be identified with the following symptoms.
- Difficulty eating
- Difficulty closing one eye
- General feeling of stiffness in the face
- Losing the sense of taste
- Feeling face pulled towards one side
- Sensitive to sound
- Experiencing loud sounds in one ear
- Difficulty making facial expressions
- Pain at the back of the ear
- Partial paralysis or paralysis on one side of the face
Identifying the cause of damage plays an essential role in order to get the appropriate treatment. Before the treatment do ensure if it's a nerve damage, tests such as CT scans, x-rays, MRI's and other such advanced tests might be recommended by the health care provider. In fact, all the impaired functions of the face would be required to be detected using various tests to determine whether the cause of it is facial nerve damage. This would also help in determining the extent of damage and on the basis of that anti-viral drugs, anti-inflammatory drugs or corticosteroids may be prescribed. If the damage is not curable through medications then, a surgery may need to be undertaken. As mentioned earlier, the treatment also depends on the cause. So for example, if the damage is a result of a tumor, then it needs to be removed through a surgery in order to end the cause first and then recommended medications to recover.
Physical therapy and acupuncture may also be recommended by the doctor, if the facial nerve damage is detected at an early stage and these therapies also help once the person recovers from the surgery to regain the normal functions of the facial nerves.