hi greenheartgirl. yes, it would be nice if you could refer me to a good herbalist in the UK. i'd need to see if i can afford the fee, given the income difference between here and there, and if i can get what she prescribes. but it's worth looking into.
actually, in the last month and a half, i realised that correcting my posture and stretching my neck no longer seems to affect my trigeminal nerve. it's strange, i don't know the reason why this is so. my symptoms with the facial stiffness and numbness are still there, perhaps slightly less that they've been in the last 2 years, but unlike earlier, stretching my neck no longer helps.
initially i took this to mean that the nerve is now healthier and less sensitive to being touched by the blood vessel. the mri i had done in january showed that a blood vessel was touching the nerve, and my physical therapist and i both felt that because stretching the neck helps, it must be moving that blood vessel away from the nerve. but it helps almost negligibly now.
in any case, over the last two years i've been to both the two chiropractors there are in this city. adjustments helped for a couple of hours, after which the symptoms returned. the second one suggested that i must work hard with stretches and strengthening exercises to build up a good posture so that the nerve is not irritated. i did a lot of exercise and yoga but wasn't able to really improve my neck posture. however, the stretches in physical therapy and in yoga used to reduce the symptoms as long as i held the stretches. now they don't. so i am not so keen on continuing on the posture work, although i am still doing it a few times a week for general benefits and to take care of my back pain.
i saw a couple of acupuncture specialists but that didn't help much either. one put needles all over my body and it didn't have any effect, i went for 15 sessions over a month's time. and the other focused mostly only on my neck, and it had an effect but it didn't last more than a couple of hours. i kept going 5 weeks and then stopped because it took a lot of time and money and didn't have any lasting effect, just like exercise. a couple of times he also put some needles for the points of the trigeminal nerve, and i had the same experience. slight improvement for a couple of hours. i was wondering if i should see someone who specifically works on the trigeminal nerve, perhaps thats the way to go now.