Biofeedback On Facial Palsy

Muscle rehabilitation—assisted by computerized biofeedback technology—is the key to improving your facial control and symmetry

One of the key elements of success with EMG biofeedback for facial droop is learning the inhibition (relaxation) of the muscles on the unaffected side of your face while simultaneously achieving the recruitment (contraction) of muscles on the affected side of your face

During biofeedback, you view a computer monitor displaying your facial muscle activity, helping you to become more actively involved in your facial muscle exercises. You can document progress and learn to inhibit your strong, unaffected muscles while simultaneously recruiting (tensing) your weak, affected muscles

By combining the facial muscle exercises taught to you by your speech pathologist or other professional and
observing your facial muscle activity on a computer monitor, you can begin to exert more voluntary control

?What is Biofeedback

Biofeedback is a treatment technique in which people are trained to improve their health by using signals from their own bodies. Physical therapists use biofeedback to help stroke victims regain movement in paralyzed muscles. Psychologists use it to help tense and anxious clients learn to relax. Specialists in many different fields use biofeedback to help their patients cope with pain

Chances are you have used biofeedback yourself. You've used it if you have ever taken your temperature or stepped on a scale. The thermometer tells you whether you're running a fever, the scale whether you've gained weight. Both devices "feed back" information about your body's condition. Armed with this information, you can take steps you've learned to improve the condition. When you're running a fever, you go to bed and drink plenty of fluids. When you've gained weight, you resolve to eat less and sometimes you do

Clinicians reply on complicated biofeedback machines in somewhat the same way that you rely on your scale or thermometer. Their machines can detect a person's internal bodily functions with far greater sensitivity and precision than a person can alone. This information may be valuable. Both patients and therapists use it to gauge and direct the progress of treatment

How is Biofeedback Used Today?[IMG]file:///C:/Users/HP/AppData/Local/Temp/msohtmlclip1/01/clip_image002.jpg[/IMG]

Clinical biofeedback techniques that grew out of the early laboratory procedures are now widely used to treat an ever-lengthening list of conditions.These include

-Migraine headaches, tension headaches, and many other types of pain-
-Disorders of the digestive system-
High blood pressure and its opposite, low blood pressure-
(Cardiac arrhythmias (abnormalities, sometimes dangerous, in the rhythm of the heartbeat-
(Raynaud's disease (a circulatory disorder that causes uncomfortably cold hand-
Paralysis and other movement disorders-

Specialists who provide biofeedback training range from psychiatrists and psychologists to dentists, internists, nurses, and physical therapists. Most rely on many other techniques in addition to biofeedback. Patients usually are taught some form of relaxation exercise. Some learn to identify the circumstances that trigger their symptoms. They may also be taught how to avoid or cope with these stressful events. Most are encouraged to change their habits, and some are trained in special techniques for gaining such self-control. Biofeedback is not magic. It cannot cure disease or by itself make a person healthy. It is a tool, one of many available to health care professionals. It reminds physicians that behavior, thoughts, and feelings profoundly influence physical health. And it helps both patients and doctors understand that they must work together as a team

?What Is Facial Palsy

The term facial palsy generally refers to weakness of the facial muscles, mainly resulting from temporary or permanent damage to the facial nerve

When a facial nerve is either non-functioning or missing, the muscles in the face do not receive the necessary signals in order to function properly. This results in paralysis of the affected part of the face, which can affect movement of the eye(s) and/or the mouth, as well as other areas

There are different degrees of facial paralysis: sometimes only the lower half of the face is affected, sometimes one whole side of the face is affected and in some cases both sides of the face are affected

?What causes facial palsy

There are many different causes of facial paralysis and it can be present at birth or occur at any other time throughout a person's life

Although the most commonly known cause of facial paralysis is Bell’s palsy, there are actually many different causes of facial palsy, and treatment and prognosis vary greatly depending on the cause Here we list some of the
many causes of facial paralysis


Congenital facial palsy is where facial paralysis is present at birth and not acquired during or after birth. Sometimes the facial nerves and/or muscles fail to develop properly in the womb, or the facial palsy may be caused by rare developmental syndromes or conditions

Viral infections such as Bell’s palsy-

Surgical causes: for example during removal of acoustic neuroma or facial nerve tumour, or whe-
operating on the parotid gland

Bacterial causes such as Lyme disease or following a middle ear infection-

Traumatic injury such as fractures to the brain, skull or face-

Stroke: although a stroke can cause facial palsy it is slightly different in that the problems are-
not caused by direct damage to the facial nerve. The paralysis in this case is caused by brain damage and the messages not being transferred properly to the facial nerve

?How does facial palsy affect people

There are many different symptoms that can be associated with facial palsy. It is also often mistakenly assumed that the issues faced by people with facial palsy are purely cosmetic, but in reality they experience a wide range
of problems


?Symptoms of Facial Palsy

The symptomof facial palsy are many and vary from persom to person. the .symptoms will depend on the cause of your facial palsy

?How does facial palsy affect the facial muscles and facial function


Loss of forehead wrinkles and inability to frown-

Eye area

Droopy eyebrow and inability to raise eyebrow-
Inability to close the eye fully or blink-
Watery eye or dry eye-
Inability to squint-
Drooping of the lower eyelid which may make the eye appear wide-
Painful eye with symptoms of grittiness or irritation-
Sensitivity to light-
Soreness or redness of the white of the eye-
Please note: seek prompt advice from your GP if you are experiencing any problems with your eyes-


The corner of the mouth pulls down/droops-
Inability to smile on affected side-
Inability to puff up your cheeks, whistle or blow-
Altered taste-
Tingling of the affected half of the tongue-
Difficulty eating and drinking-
Difficulty brushing your teeth and spitting out-
Drooling from the weak corner of your mouth-
(Excess or reduced salivation (dry mouth-
Inability to pout-
Difficulty speaking because of weakness in the lips and cheek-


Pain in or near the affected ear-
Loss of hearing-
Increased sensitivity to high pitched noise-


Nose runs or feels stuffy-
Inability to flare nostril-
Inability to wrinkle nose-

?Facial Palsy Information Video

About this video: Imagine if you couldn’t close your eyes and you couldn’t control your mouth: speaking, eating, drinking, blinking, smiling – all the things we take for granted would become a struggle. This video tells you more about facial palsy, and the difficulties people with facial palsy have to face every day



DHHS Publication No (ADM) 83-1273This Material was written by Bette Runck, staff writer, Division of Communication and Education, National Institute of Mental Health
What is Biofeedback?

2010 Advanced Biofeedback Center. All rights reserved -
Biofeedback training for Facial Droop, Bell's Palsy

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