SymptomsBy Mayo Clinic staff
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Signs and symptoms of Bell's palsy come on suddenly, and may include:
- Rapid onset of mild weakness to total paralysis on one side of your face — occurring within hours to days — making it difficult to smile or close your eye on the affected side
- Facial droop and difficulty making facial expressions
- Pain around the jaw or in or behind your ear on the affected side
- Increased sensitivity to sound on the affected side
- A decrease in your ability to taste
- Changes in the amount of tears and saliva you produce
In rare cases, Bell's palsy can affect the nerves on both sides of your face.
When to see a doctor
Seek immediate medical help if you experience any type of paralysis because you may be having a stroke. Bell's palsy is not caused by a stroke. See your doctor if you experience facial weakness or drooping, to determine the underlying cause and severity of the illness.
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