“Sometimes your joy is the source of your smile, but sometimes your smile can be the source of your joy”
– Thich Nhat Hanh
Face Yoga for Bell’s Palsy
In the recent times, Face yoga has found success in rehabilitating paralyzed facial muscles, restoring facial movements, and improving the residual effects of Bell’s Palsy like synkinesis and facial asymmetries.
Apart from the physical transformational benefits, Face yoga has also helped Bell’s Palsy warriors restore their lost confidence and embark on a journey of self-care and self-love.
What is Face Yoga?
FACE YOGA is a natural, holistic approach to relaxing, lifting and toning your face using facial exercises, acupressure and massage techniques that integrate breathing and awareness.
While some exercises activate, strengthen, tone, and lift the facial muscles, the other exercises help in releasing tension and tightness and relaxing your face.
Face yoga also aides in improving facial symmetry, draining of accumulated lymph, promotes blood flow to the face and increases the oxygen and nutrient supply to the skin, thus significantly improving the texture and tone of the facial skin.
What is Bell’s Palsy?
Bell’s Palsy is a type of facial paralysis in which one side of the face is paralyzed. It’s a sudden occurrence. The cause of Bell’s Palsy is uncertain. It is thought to be a caused due the disturbance or stress on the 7th cranial nerve due to a viral infection.
The attack seems to occur when our immune system is at its weakest due to their stress, trauma, pregnancy, or other health issues. Many people seem to fully recover on their own in a few weeks but in many others the residual effects lasts for years or maybe forever.
Facial Asymmetry and Droopiness
Mild to Extreme Pain on the affected side
Loss of sensation
Rigidity, numbness, and loss of movement of facial muscles
Inability to close, blink or shut the eyes on affected side
Tearful Eyes and sometimes lack of tears
Non -Clarity of voice or inability to pronounce certain words clearly
Partial numbness and loss of sensation in the tongue
Inability to eat or drink without spilling
Loss of identity and self- worth
Loss of confidence
Uncertainty about the possibility, extent, and speed of their recovery
No clarity on whom to approach for treatment
Confused about various modalities of treatment options available
Desperation to try anything and everything to restore their face back to normalcy
Extreme consciousness while smiling, eating, speaking, or laughing
Inability to express their emotions through their face
Looking into the mirror and trying to accept their new face but struggling to do so
Getting through each day hoping for a better tomorrow.
Dealing with thoughts of what others might be thinking about their face.
Dilemma on whether to communicate to people about their condition
Self-isolation from socializing
While there seems to be limited awareness, information, and treatment on the physical challenges of Bell’s Palsy, the emotional and psychological impact is totally ignored and not offered any sort of counseling or treatment.
For the people affected with BP, the emotional challenges can be harder to deal with than the physical challenges. They are usually left alone to resolve it themselves.
Benefits of Face Yoga for Bell’s Palsy *
Rebuild strength in the muscles of the affected side
Re-engage and activate the dormant muscles
Establish different neurological pathways through mindfulness, muscle isolation and facial re-education.Improve blood circulation to the face thus increasing the supply of oxygen and nutrients
Eliminate accumulated toxins and waste through lymphatic drainage
Release tension and tightness in the facial muscles and fascia.
Improve facial symmetry and smile.
Promote self- care and self-love
Practicing Face Yoga for Bell’s Palsy might have some side effects but thankfully, they are POSITIVE. Along with improving muscle movement, flexibility, and facial symmetry, you might end up with a toned, lifted, and glowing face with smoothened lines and wrinkles.
Face yoga is NOT a magic solution / treatment for Bell’s Palsy and DOES NOT substitute the initial treatment given by the specialists upon diagnosis. It is a healing method for residual effects of Bell’s Palsy. Also, BP affects everybody differently and the results will vary based on several factors. Face yoga for BP MUST be practiced correctly, under guidance and at a particular time in the healing journey.
The Face Sculpting Method for Bell’s Palsy Recovery
The Face Sculpting Method (FSM) is one of a kind, 12 weeks transformational Face Yoga coaching program taking women from frustration and helplessness about their facial aging concerns to a place where they can feel confident knowing exactly how to take care of their face and look the best version of themselves at any age without any invasive procedures.
A few months back, we had a client with Bell’s Palsy enroll in FSM. Along with erasing wrinkles and toning her face, she showed amazing progress and improvements in flexibility, symmetry, and synkinesis on the affected side of her face. The biggest change was in her confidence. She was a new person by the time she finished the program. You can read and watch her story here.
Similarly, there have been case studies with other Face Yoga teachers where people with BP have shown tremendous improvements after face yoga practice.
Unfortunately, face yoga is not yet considered as a healing method for BP due to lack of awareness in this area.
How can The Face Sculpting Method help with Bell’s Palsy?
Our foundational belief that the health of your face is influenced by physical, emotional, mental, and spiritual bodies ensures that we consider the whole person, the environment, and their current state of wellness.
We take a holistic approach addressing the 3 most important factors that affect the Bell’s Palsy recovery which we call our 3 Pillars:
Awareness is always the first step towards recovery. At FSM, the focus is on creating a sense of awareness in the way your facial muscles are responding to usage/ lack of use, aligning your breath with the poses, visualizing movements, and establishing a mind body connection.
Often specialists and therapists see Bell’s Palsy as an isolated facial concern and focus just on the physical aspect, localizing the treatment plan to the affected area of the face. Your lifestyle, habits, emotions, and mindset play a big role in the healing journey of Bell’s Palsy.
FSM is a healing method that takes a holistic approach to improve your overall wellness which includes physical and emotional well-being, nutrition, hydration, posture, and various other simple sustainable self-care practices that can equip your body to boost the immune system and aid in the recovery process.
03 Facial Exercises
At FSM, our focus is not just on treating the affected side of the face. We focus on improving the overall health of the face and help you develop a facial exercise routine that best suits your face. The facial exercises apart from improving flexibility and strengthening the facial muscles will also help you to tone your face, smoothen wrinkles and improve the skin texture.
Important things to consider before starting Face Yoga for Bell’s Palsy
Always consult a specialist as soon as you experience symptoms of Bells Palsy like droopiness, rigidity and pain on one side of the face.
Wait until you have some movement on the affected side. If you have just been diagnosed, wait until you have movement on the face before starting facial exercises. It is strongly recommended that you wait 6 – 8 weeks from initial diagnosis before you start face yoga practice.
Wait for the pain to subside before jumping into alternate therapies or practices.
Rest and Recovery in the initial phase is most important. Give yourself that space to rest and recover from initial effects. Take help from friends and family during this period.
Who can be the right candidate for FSM (BP)?
The Face Sculpting Method (BP) is a small group coaching program exclusively designed for women BP warriors. It is a safe space for them to be vulnerable and share their experiences, feelings, struggles and insecurities openly without fear of being judged. It is also a space where you are going to be inspiring and be inspired by others on the same journey as you.
Any woman who has crossed the first 6 to 8 weeks from the day they were first affected with Bell’s Palsy are good candidates for FSM.
Whether it’s been 6 weeks, 6 months, 6 years or longer, there is hope for improving the residual effects of Bell’s Palsy and witnessing changes.
Mindset Mantras for healing and recovery using FSM
If you knew that everything you believe is true, what would you choose to believe?
Trust the process and surrender to it. I tell all my clients whether you believe it’s going to work for you or it’s not going to work for you, either way its “TRUE”. So, what would you choose to believe?
Believe in your body’s ability to heal.
Believe with all your heart that your mind and body know the way to recovery. Support your mind by feeding it with love and positive thoughts. It’s natural and okay to feel angry, sad, frustrated, helplessness at times. Remember to acknowledge those thoughts and feelings, stay with them if needed for a while and then redirect it to loving positive thoughts.
Support your body in its healing journey by taking care of it in the best way possible by choosing to do the right things for your body be it through nutrition, exercise, hydration, sleep and rest.
Where focus goes, energy flows
Most treatment and therapies focus on the affected side of the face. At FSM, the focus is not on Bell’s Palsy or treating the affected side. The focus is to achieve a healthy, relaxed and toned face as well as improve symmetry and flexibility.
By doing that, we keep our focus on a positive goal and keep our energy flowing in that direction.
Do not compare your progress with others.
Bell’s Palsy affects different people differently. Everyone’s symptoms, coping mechanism, recovery time and healing journey is going to be different. Keep your focus on only the progress you are making.
Be kind and patient with yourself.
Any form of healing takes time. So be kind and patient with yourself and follow your own pace.
Together, we are better
Typically, Bell’s Palsy consultation and treatments happen on a one-one basis. Most often people going through BP, feel a sense of loneliness with nobody to understand what they are going through and share their feelings.
FSM is a small group coaching program (max 10) for Bell’s Palsy warriors where they will be coached together through 12 weeks.
Although every individual, their symptoms and their BP stages will be different, everyone will be working together towards a common goal which is to bring back their smile and confidence and to fall in love with themselves all over again. This will give you a feeling of belonging and acceptance and might help in the emotional healing and recovery.
Another benefit is the reduced cost which will make it accessible to more people.
Even if it’s a group, the size of the group will be small enough for everyone to get individual attention that they need.
The road to recovery is unpredictable and uncertain. Why not hop on a journey with a small group of fellow BP warriors who can understand you, cheer you on and pick you up when you feel like giving up?
“Your belief determines your action and your action determines your results, but first you have to believe.” — Mark Victor Hansen
“The body is a self-healing organism, so it’s really about clearing things out of the way so the body can heal itself.” - Barbara Brennan
“Where focus goes, energy flows. And where energy flows, whatever you’re focusing on grows. In other words, your life is controlled by what you focus on. That’s why you need to focus on where you want to go, not on what you fear. When you next find yourself in a state of uncertainty, resist your fear. Shift your focus toward where you want to go and your actions will take you in that direction.”-- Tony Robbins
“Stop comparing yourself to others. You have your own race to run. Finish well” – Lecrae Moore
“Patience is not simply the ability to wait, it’s how we behave while waiting”. – Joyce Meyer
“We are stronger together than we are alone.” — Walter Payton
Bell’s Palsy Recovery through The Face Sculpting Method
Client Story - 41 year old woman
This 41 year old woman was affected with Bell’s Palsy in February 2019. After some preliminary treatments and physiotherapy, she recovered partially but the after-effects of BP like facial asymmetries, stiffness, lack of flexibility in the face, and synkinesis (an after-effect of BP causing involuntary movement of unrelated facial muscles) deprived her of her confidence, her enthusiasm, and her smile.
She had tried everything except for Botox/surgeries and she didn’t want to go that route. She enrolled in FSM seeking a natural means to regain her facial symmetry, flexibility, and confidence.
"FSM gave me the confidence to smile, confidence to get pictures and lastly, I truly like myself, the way I am. Me, my family and my husband all agree that this is one of the best decisions I’ve ever made in life. With all the changes that I have gone through, I can say that this is a program that people with Bell’s Palsy will be hugely benefited. I can vouch for this."
- 41 year old woman
Overall Relaxed Face
Relaxed Eye Area
No more sunken / hollow eyes
No wrinkles /lines under the eyes
Relaxed cheek area
Smoother nasolabial folds
More definition in the lower face
Relaxed jaw and chin area
Glowing, even skin tone
Confidence to smile
Confidence to take pictures
Confidence to speak in public
Confidence to face the world
Improved flexibility in facial muscles on the affected side
Improvement in synkinesis
Although her recovery is not complete, she has come a long way from where she started and is on the track to full recovery. We are both confident that it will happen with consistent practice and belief in her body’s ability to heal itself. It’s only a matter of time.
Medical Disclaimer: All information contained within this website is for informational purposes only. It is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent health problems – nor is it intended to replace the advice of a qualified medical practitioner, health practitioner, or fitness professional. No action should be taken solely on the contents of this website. Always consult your physician or qualified health professional on any matters regarding your health or on any opinions expressed in this program. The information provided within this guide is believed to be accurate based on the best judgment of the author, but the reader is responsible for consulting with his or her own health professional on any matters raised within. We do not assume liability for the information contained within this website, be it direct, indirect, consequential, special, exemplary, or other. Always seek the advice of a physician or other qualified healthcare provider with any questions regarding a medical condition. Never disregard or delay seeking professional medical advice or treatment because of something you have read on the Bloom Face Yoga website.
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