Facial Weakness

What is facial weakness (7th nerve paresis)?

Facial weakness is temporary or permanent impairment of the 7th cranial nerve, which gives our face movement and expression.


Facial weakness can be caused by many things including viral infections, middle ear infections, diabetes or injury.

Problems arising

Facial weakness causes:

  • Inability to close the eye
  • Dry eye
  • Watery eye
  • Droopy eyelids
  • Droopy cheek 
  • Sagging of the mouth
  • Twitching of the eye or corner of the mouth

What treatment is available?

In most cases, the eye will require lubrication with drops, gels or ointments. If the nerve does not recover over time, surgery may help to reduce the facial asymmetry, and improve appearance and function of the face. There are many different surgical options available. Sometimes, Botox is recommended and used to reduce the facial twitch if present.

Timing for surgery

This is not fixed and depends on individual clinical circumstances. This is determined during consultation.