I'm 23, and I had Bell's palsy last summer when I was 22...
When I went to brush my teeth in the morning, I noticed that water dribbled out one side of my mouth, but I didn't really think much of it. Then later on that day, my right eye started feeling really dry, but I was at the mall and attributed it to dry mall air.
My car radio sounded funny to me...wasn't sure why...got home later in the evening and my face started to feel funny/stiff.
I went to the mirror and made some faces, and I noticed that the right side of my face didn't move normally...couldn't raise the eyebrow or shut my eye tightly, and my mouth drooped. My tongue started feeling numb as well.
Called my doctor in the morning, and he put me on Prednisone, and gave me polysporin ointment for my eye, and I had to tape my eye shut at night to prevent corneal abrasions since it wouldn't shut on its own.
First round of Prednisone didn't help at all. It progressed to having slurred speech, difficulty eating, and pain in my face/ear.
Loud noises made me dizzy.
Started a second round of Prednisone...
It took me about 3-4 weeks to start having any improvement at all, and about 2-3 months for it to totally go away.
The residual effects I have aren't really noticeable to anyone but me...if I raise my eyebrows, my right eyelid droops, and if I'm tired, my right eye sometimes twitches.
I saw a neurologist a couple of times during all this...he said that some people get it once and never again, and some people have recurrences. Also said that if you can feel it coming on and you get on steroids soon enough, you could possibly prevent a full blown case...although the use of steroids is still controversial. The steroids are supposed to help decrease the inflammation of the facial nerve, which is what causes the facial paralysis.
The inflammation is caused by the cold sore virus...something I realized after I learned that, was that I had had a sore in my right ear a couple weeks before the onset of my Bell's. I was also in a period of high stress and was pretty run down, which can be a trigger...getting ready to graduate nsg school, parents getting divorced, and moving out of our house.
My neuro said there was no known relation between Bell's and other d/o like MS, myasthenia gravis, or Guillean Barre (sp?).
I felt like a freak the whole time I was affected though...
But it went away. It took awhile, but it finally did, and now no one would ever know.
5 days is still pretty early on, so hang in there...it will pass.
Take your meds, get adequate rest, and eat as well as you can!