Bell's palsy is temporary weakness or lack of movement affecting 1 side of the face. Most people get better within 9 months.
These are symptoms of Bell's palsy
It's important to see a GP as soon as possible after developing these symptoms because treatment for Bell's palsy is more effective if started early (within 72 hours).
These can be signs of a more serious condition, like a stroke.
Unlike Bell's palsy, the symptoms of a stroke usually come on suddenly.
Treatments for Bell's palsy include:
Your GP might prescribe a type of steroid called prednisolone. Treatment with prednisolone should begin within 3 days (72 hours) of the symptoms starting.
Bell's palsy is rare in children, and most children who are affected make a full recovery without treatment.
Most people make a full recovery within 9 months, but it can take longer. In a small number of cases, the facial weakness can be permanent.
Go back to see a GP if you have facial weakness or paralysis after 6 to 9 months. Surgery might be a possible treatment option.
Because it's probably caused by an infection, Bell's palsy cannot be prevented. It may be linked to the herpes virus.
You'll usually only get Bell's palsy once, but it can sometimes come back. This is more likely if you have a family history of the condition.