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Life Experiences continue: Bell's Palsy

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Today has been interesting, to say the least! I went to sleep last night while trying to fight this nagging pain in my jaw/ear... if felt like the sudden onset of an ear infection or like I had just returned from a dentist appointment and my left jaw was aching (throbbing pain) I managed to fall asleep eventually, but upon waking this morning, I couldn't SHUT my left eye!

Talk about disconcerning! I rushed to the bathroom looked in the mirror and suddenly realized that the left side of my mouth was not moving either.
The whole left side of my face was expressionless!

{My Bell's Palsy face: L) trying to smile R) trying to close my eyes}

The first thing I thought was "Did I have a stroke?"
Collin has been home this week making preparations for Rudy's (his father, my father-in-law) life celebration for this weekend, so luckily I wasn't alone when all this went down! (Speaking of going down, after thinking that it was a stroke, I worked myself up so much that I fainted! Luckily I was sitting down for that part!) He took me to the Foothills emergency room (where the nurses took good care of me, making light of the situation) I knew I was going to be ok! The doctor proceeded to check my vitals, made sure I didn't have an ear infection or a stroke and gave me a prescription for Prednisone (a steroid) to help aid in the reduction of the nerve inflammation (which is causing the current paralysis). They say that the condidion cal last a few days, a month or in worst case scenarios be permanent (but that's only in 1% of cases!) I'm hoping I have my nerve function back in a day of two... I hope I'm 100% able to shake my booty for the Zumba training on Saturday... then the IDFA competition on Sunday (thank GOD I'm not competing, this would be devistating! but I am going to be there backstage taking care of my girl Steph's Dream Tanning and Bikini Biting needs!!!)

{In true Jessica fashion, I wanted to document this experience and hopefully others can learn something from it! I can't wait to get back to my OLD SELF again! I already miss smiling and laughing! (Oh yeah, and blinking!!! My friggen left eye doesn't close all the way, I have to use eye drops like every minute and wear an eye patch to sleep! Arrgggg!)}

PS... my Mom experienced this also when she was in her 30's... so talking to her before I got to the emergency room actually put my mind at ease!
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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    I was diagnosed today with Bell's Palsy on my left side and am a bit freaked out. I know in my heart it will get better but it doesn't change the present when I have difficulty smiling, chewing, swallowing, brushing my teeth, closing my eye, winking, etc... I am on Prednisone for 9 days, eye drops and a lovely eye patch. My eye is swollen and it is hard to see so I will take a week off---that financially I cannot afford but I know I need. I have been working hard on taking better care of myself but this is definitely a wake up call. Thanks for all of your Blogs it is helpful to hear from others who have been through it. Thanks!!!
    2848 days ago
    I read your video blog on June 4 where you're getting your smile back and I decided to read further to see the origin of this whole thing.

    Uh -- I have a couple of things to say about this so ... first things first ... "bikini biting needs?" Exsqueeze me ... a baking powder? I had no idea that there was a need for bikini biters ... I need an application ... I wanna turn pro.

    Secondly, holy Toledo on that Bells thing. This is my first time hearing about it. Thanks for describing it. Looks like you're going to get better though ... so ... whew! I would have panicked too ... not to mention the inevitable brown-out. Good luck to you!!
    2907 days ago
    Oh my! My thoughts and prayers are definitely with you. You will whip this thing! :)
    2937 days ago
    Why does life gang up on us as if we need to learn about everything all at once?


    Feel better soon.
    2939 days ago
    2940 days ago
    I found this to be good timing for me to read after talking to my sister the other day and learning that one of our good friends had this happen to him recently. He was absolutely scared to death that he had a stroke.
    Glad that you are ok, and I hope that everything returns to normal soon.
    2940 days ago
    Wow, I'm so sorry to hear about it. I hope you get better soon and commend you for sharing this so others can learn about it.
    2942 days ago
    Wow, I'm so sorry to hear about it. I hope you get better soon and commend you for sharing this so others can learn about it.
    2942 days ago
    Holy SHI! JESS! Dude, that completely sucks, how stressful! You are such an amazing person not to let it get in the way or get you down. How long did it last for your mom? Did it recur or just happen once?

    One silver lining, it waited until after your wedding was over!
    2942 days ago
    Hi!!! I have Bells Palsy too!! I'm sorry to hear that you've gotten. It sucks. There is no other words to describe it. Although - for awhile I had fun freaking out the people I work with - I thought I was closing my eye, but it was just rolling in the back of my head while my lid stayed open. Ack! It scared the big burly mechanics I work with. I had a good laugh.

    I was diagnosed with it on Aug 31, 2009. Just last month I stopped taping my eye shut at night - although I still have to use a straw to drink liquids. I long for the day when I can drink coffee with out a straw, move my eyebrows & smile. Slowly things are coming back, but it's been painfully slow for me.

    I've lost 110 pounds but can't really smile. The left side of my face is the effected side for me.

    I highly recommend eye products by a company called Genteal. They seem to work the best & the longest in keeping the eye moist. Also - I highly recommend getting a B-12 supplement to take daily. Several reports say that this is suppose to help --it certainly won't hurt to try it.

    I hope you have a speedy recovery. Take it easy & don't push yourself too hard for the first couple weeks. If there is anything I can do to help - let me know. You can see my palsy on a before/after photo on my page. There is a face one - I just can't smile .. even though I've lost weight right through all of this drama.

    For most people it doesn't last too long. I hope you are one of them.

    2943 days ago
    O boy Jessica, so is it from the dentist visit? you sound like you are doing all you can to do in the situation, good thing Collin was home! I would faint too!

    get well soon
    2943 days ago
    wow, i would have freaked out, too! hope your nerves get better soon! i would be so irritating not to be able to smile or blink.
    2943 days ago
  • AKA639
    How scary! I have heard about people going through bouts of this before. Good to know that your mom has been through it and it has passed. Also, I'm glad to hear that you got checked out and got some meds to reduce inflammation. Feel better soon! I'll be thinking of you! And if your moody tell Collin it's the testosterone ;)
    emoticon emoticon
    2943 days ago
    I am so sorry Jess! My sister went through this and it was very scary for her. She is better now and I know she would have more support to offer and would share her experience. If you would like to talk to her she is BEVFORLIFE on here.

    2943 days ago
    Well, as you know, I already commented on FB, but just know that I am sending you great big emoticon , babes!!!!
    2943 days ago
    Oh my gosh! That must have been so scary to wake up and see!! So glad that it wasn't a stroke. Hopefully the medicine will help and your symptoms will go away soon. Thank goodness Collin was home for it as well. I can't imagine you having to go through something like that alone. It's also great that your Mom was able to put your mind at ease a little bit. Keeping my fingers crossed that you're 100% better in time for this weekend and sending you tons of hugs!
    2943 days ago
    Yikes, sorry to hear about the Bell's Palsy!! One of my other friends here, WILDFLOWER~, experienced the same thing recently. Know that it is something you can overcome!! I'm sure she'd be open to sharing her experience if you want to contact her; she's a friend on my page (and also LEANVIXEN's).

    Best wishes for a good recovery for you!!
    2943 days ago
    How scary - hope it all passes soon
    2943 days ago
    Poor thing! I hope you'll get much better soon. Did the doctors say what this was due to?
    2944 days ago
    Holy crap! You must have been freakin' out! Hopefully, this'll be an isolated episode and it won't plague you in the future. Here's to your smile on the outside resuming to match your smile on the inside very soon! emoticon
    2944 days ago
    i am so glad that you are poor thing for having to go through that
    2944 days ago
  • LOVE_2_RUN
    Oh my god, I would have been terrified! It's good that you went to the ER to get checked out. I hope everything returns to normal soon. Do they have any clue what caused it for you or for your mom? The prednisone works pretty quickly, right? I'll be thinking about you. ~Leslie
    2944 days ago
    How scary!!! Did they say what causes it? I am glad you are okay and that most likely this is just temporary. By the way, I totally love your sense of humor regarding it!!!
    2944 days ago
    Oh Jess so sorry. I actually worked with a girl who had this and she was able to move the side of her face it affected within days. You're a sport. Take care of yourself.

    2944 days ago
    WOW- that's crazy timing with regards to that project! Yikes!
    I've kmown a few people who had this and it lasted a month or two, but it could be a day or two- I'll keep my fingers crossed for you!

    Rest, so you're ready for this week-end girl!

    HUGE HUGS!!!!
    2944 days ago
    I'm sorry to hear this! Get well soon.
    2944 days ago
    My goodness, how scary! For what it's worth, the jaw pain? A friend of mine with TMJ has been suffering all day. I don't have TMJ, but I clench when I'm tense... and my jaw has felt really tense today.
    2944 days ago
  • LLTS01
    Wow- how scary. I hope this will pass in a few days.
    2944 days ago
    Sorry Jess! I hope it goes away real soon!
    2944 days ago
    I thought stroke when I first saw those pics. Hope you feel better real soon.
    2944 days ago
    Oh Dear, I hate to hear this! just remember who can heal you, the Good and Almighty GOD. Ask him for healing! I hope you get better VERY soon.
    2944 days ago
    i work myself up so much when something happens i fait to lol about a month and a half ago i was taking the pit out of an avacado and the pit split in half and i shoved the knife strait threw my thumb. it didnt hurt or anything i was completly fine until i started to examine it threw the bubbling blood and noticed it had gone all the way threw lol i started thinking of all these things that could be wrong and that i would have to go to the hospital and bla bla bla long hard story with me and hospitals but anyways i scared myself so bad i turned blue and fainted for like a minute or 2. i ended up just goin to the clinic and all that needed to be done was update my tetnis lol so hopefully your face will go back to normal in a few days :-)
    2944 days ago
  • GFMAMA888
    Were you tested for Lyme disease when you were in the ER?? This can be a sign of Lyme which can be tx w/ antibiotics. I'm not trying to scare you in any way...just concerned bc it is important to get treated if that's the case.
    2944 days ago
    Oh dear....I am so sorry...I heard stress can do this too.. HUGS Jessica Big HUGS
    2944 days ago
    Thinking of you, Jess! Hope that all clears up soon. You're taking this on like a champ.
    2944 days ago
    I'm glad they were able to tell you what was wrong. Hopefully it will go away soon for you.
    2944 days ago
    I've heard of Bell's Palsy before and your experience certainly reflects the text book case (as if you didn't know - ha!). I hope it clears up quickly on its own adn you can jump back into your crazy schedule ASAP!!!
    2944 days ago
    Oh gosh! I think that happened to my mom once. Hope it's gone soon.
    2944 days ago
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