More on Bell's Palsy
Here's a look at what I went through with my eye, starting with http://rvgolfer.blogspot.com/2005/05/this-treacher-body.html. I've written several things on my blog.
No exercises, although I ate a lot of papaya on the off-chance the papaicin in it would help the nerves.
I started out wearing a patch, but segued on to getting the eyelid sewn shut. That was worse than the operation on my skull (which I've since learned may have been only a way for the surgeons to make a buck): the eye doctors put a sheet over my face with a little hole in it for the eye, then worked through that while I lay there.
They roughened the edge of the eyelid so it would heal together, then sewed it shut and put small foam marshmallows on the stitches so the thread wouldn't pull through the eyelid, but took those off after a couple of days. (I looked like a rad punker with all the body attachments.) A few months later they opened the eyelid up again, snip, snip.
I've since learned that this might cause problems with the tear ducts, btw. I'm reading "The Dry Eye Remedy" by Robert Latkany.
It could have been much worse. It could have been a stroke or something.
It has been 3 years since this happened, and I'm back to about 90% of what my face could do. No problem driving, working or exercising. This year I'm going to try biking again, to see how good my balance is.
I wear glasses, so bought a pair of big dark glasses that cover my regular ones. They were $19.95 at Walgreen's. If you look close, you can see the dark glass opening at the temples as well as in front (for peripheral vision). These help keep the glare down, important when you are outside.
I use drops 4 times a day, then an ointment at night. I did sleep with a patch on for awhile, but have stopped now.
I've been getting into video, so it didn't affect my eyesight. The VA has me come in about once a year, just to check.
Another place to learn about Bell's Palsy is on Wikipedia.