7th… From Out-Thinking… Cranial nerve exercises

“Here is a set of quick neural exercises and fast workout for maintaining and strengthening the Cranial Nerves, to support our health, growth, and restoration, and assist in long term progressive symptom reduction.”

PROGRAMME GUIDE

[I couldn’t transfer the video, so what follows is the url for the entire article]

http://www.outthinkingparkinsons.com/articles/cranial-nerves

“1. Watch and regularly review the video, to ensure a good understanding and improve ability to visualize the specific muscles which we are seeking to innervate with each exercise.”

[I viewed the video, and although it shows the muscles … and perhaps shows the good doctors knowledge and understanding of said muscles, I think we can all follow the guide below, even without viewing it.] your choice. 🙂

“2. Take a few minutes to perform the exercise routine just once or twice a day, do not overdo, especially initially – less is more, consistent practice every day is more important.”

“3. Hold each expression made for a few seconds, and concentrate (embody) the feelings and sensations created, then relax face before moving on to next.”

“4. If particular exercises are difficult to perform, use fingers to assist, or close eyes and simply visualize/imagine making the expression and the muscle movement – even micro-twitches will be beneficial.”

ADDITIONAL OPTIONS

1. Look in the mirror while performing the workout, and consciously notice/observe changes to face.


2. Gently place finger tips on each muscle which is being innervated.


3. Rotate daily between exercising left side only, right side only, and both sides.

4. Find a partner/guide with a healthy Social Engagement/Cranial Nervous System, and follow/mirror/mimic their facial expressions as they go through the routine, exploiting the Mirror Neurons which fire when watching other people move.

FACIAL NERVE EXERCISES

1. Wrinkle forehead.
2. Close eyelids gently and relax face.
3. Close eyes tightly.
4. Draw eyebrows down and inward.
5. Frown and wrinkle top of nose.
6. Flare nostrils out.
7. Draw nose downwards with septum.
8. Close lips tight together.
9. Purse lips as if kissing,
10. Purse lips as if whistling.
11. Puff up cheeks, then slowly blow out breath.
12. Draw corners of the mouth outwards with lips closed.
13. Draw corners of mouth upwards with lips closed.
14. Draw corners of mouth downwards with lips closed.
15. Open lips and show upper teeth by curling/lifting upper lip, opening nostrils.
16. Starting with lips closed, push lower lip out as if pouting.
17. Open lips and show lower teeth, by pulling lower lip down.
18. Smile broadly, showing teeth.
19. Raise ears (for most people this will require manual assistance with fingers).
20. Draw ears back (“).
21. Draw ears up and forwards (“).

4th… From Out-Thinking … ears and tongue

8 VESTIBULOCOCHLEAR NERVE

Cranial Nerve 8 – “the auditory vestibular nerve, transmits sound and balance information from the inner ear to the brain.”

“PwP have very poor balance and may experience dizziness. These symptoms become more pronounced if the disease is allow to progress. PwP are often hyper-sensitive to noise and can become averse to listen to music.”

………………………….That explains so much!! I need noise going… either white noise, or background noise from TV or radio, to help me cope with little noises. Even to hear myself eating causes agitation. It is so difficult to keep calm and say nothing, when someone swishes fluid around in their mouth. I hear people swallow. I yelled at a guest, because they were eating popcorn before I could get the noisy fan turned on to drown out the noise. grrrr. now I understand.

TONGUE

9 GLOSSOPHARYNGEAL NERVE 

Cranial Nerve 9 – “connected to tasting, swallowing, salivary secretions and visceral pain, supplying the tonsils, pharynx, middle ear and the posterior third of the tongue.”

“Loss of sense of taste is strongly associated with PD symptoms, as is dry mouth, thickened saliva and/or dribbling. Visceral pain (dystonia) is also frequently involved.”

…………………………I’m not sure how much ability to taste I might have lost. Just like a person doesn’t realize how impaired their vision is, until they get fitted with a proper lens. But I have noticed the cashews I have always enjoyed seem flavorless. The biggy here, for me, is the drooling. When I am focused on a task, my mouth is relaxed… I forget to swallow, until the drool splashes on my hand.

TONGUE, MOUTH

12 HYPOGLOSSAL NERVE

Cranial Nerve 12 – “controls tongue movements required for speech and swallowing, including sticking out the tongue and moving it from side to side.”

“Speech problems are another classic, major and degenerative feature of PD, as are issues with swallowing.”

……………………………… Although I have soft speech and occasional choking issues, I think my tongue still works reasonably well.

2nd… From Out-Thinking… Cranial Nerves … TMJ

FACE

5, 7 TRIGEMINAL NERVE, FACIAL NERVE

Cranial Nerve 5 – “a nerve responsible for sensation in the face and motor functions such as biting and chewing.”

Cranial Nerve 7 – “emerges from the brainstem, controls the muscles of facial expression, and conveys taste sensations from the anterior two-thirds of the tongue and oral cavity.” 

“A blank or expressionless face is one of the classic signs of Parkinson’s Disease, used as a principle diagnostic point by neurologists. If this is allowed to progress, the face can take on a “plastic mask” appearance: featureless (puffy), with a “waxy” or shiny appearance. Problems chewing, over-clenching and misalignment of the jaw are common symptoms too. Indeed, temporomandibular joint (TMJ) disorders are strongly correlated with PD.”

(I have extracted what follows from the preceding link on TMJ) TMJ was one of the reasons I have struggled to eat… but until now, I did not understand the correlation.

“A systematic review by Medlicott and Harris found that active exercise, manual mobilizations and postural training may be effective in treating temporomandibular joint (TMJ) disorders.1 However, many therapists choose not to treat the condition unless the client is experiencing pain. I believe this represents a missed opportunity to address anatomical and functional problems in their early stages.”

“When the head and neck move forward in the sagittal plane, the brain’s visual proprioceptors cause the occiput to backward-bend on atlas. This remarkable brain stem reflex (Law of Righting) will cock the head back to level the eyes against the horizon even if it means ravaging the neck.” 

“Sustained isometric contraction in the suboccipitals reflexively weakens the longus capitis and colli antagonist muscles and places the entire nervous system in a heightened state of alert. With the head and neck jutted forward, passive tensile forces develop in the hyoid and digastric muscles.”

……………………..The brain, in essence, is trying to compensate for the forward head carriage by pulling back on the cranium using the jaw muscles