I posted this on the Ask Curezone forum, but I would be interested in your view on this so am posting it here also.
For the last two years I suffer from a stiffness around my eyes, and less intensely on the upper part of my face in general. Four months ago I began to do yoga which has helped reduce the stiffness considerably, although it still remains, mostly now around my left eye.
It seems that the reason for this is that the trigeminal nerve is affected, most probably by an impingement in the cervical spine. I and the doctors I am seeing this think so because when I hold a forward bending pose during yoga for long, and for some time later, I feel a twitch in my left eyebrow, and this feels like a relief, as if sensation is returning to that area of the face. The relief does not remain for long, however. The only explanation for this I have is that the forward bending pose straightens and opens up the cervical spine, and removes an impingement of the trigeminal nerve, wherever that is taking place.
I've so far avoided getting an MRI but I am now going to get one, although the doctors think that most probably it will not show anything significant, since the impingement appears to be very minor - "cellular" as they say. Any serious impingement would have caused extreme pain, as is associated with trigeminal neuralgia.
I've seen a few neurologists and orthopedists before and they prescribed SSRIs and tricyclic antidepressants, which I decided not to take because of the possible side effects on mind and body. The orthopedist I recently saw and described my eyebrow twitching to prescribed gabapentin in a 100 mg daily dose, which is not an antidepressant. I've read some terrible stories about its side effects, but I am inclined to take it.
How dangerous is it to take gabapentin?
Are there any natural alternatives to stimulating the trigeminal nerve? I am going to see my acupuncturist and ask him to focus on this.
Most fundamentally, even if I manage to stimulate the trigeminal nerve into becoming fully sensate, how long will the effects last as long as I have not dealt with the cervical impingement? I have a scoliosis in my thoracic spine which causes the muscles and the spine in that area and above to be tight and out of shape, so I may perhaps have a life long tendency towards stiffness in the face connected with that area.
One of the cures for trigeminal neuralgia reported here in CZ is oil pulling. I've done oil pulling for about six months, but experienced benefit for only a few minutes, or an hour or so. That confirms my feeling that anything I do will be temporary unless I get the impingement out of the picture.