Warning – This post is speculative and not to be experimented with!
In 1987 I had a severe cold, and a secondary effect was that the left side of my face developed Bell’s palsy. The trigeminal nerve was apparently inflamed and not working properly and the left side of my face had no muscle control. It was necessary to hold that side of my mouth closed with my hand while eating to prevent drooling. The condition lasted about two weeks and then totally vanished. About that time I was attending some lectures by Paul Ekman, who is the expert on facial expressions, and mentioned that I was unable to feel the emotions that required me to flex my facial muscles symmetrically. That when I smiled only half of my mouth lifted into the upward position, and because of that I was forming a hypocritical smile and feeling a hypocritical emotion. I never thought much about that until today when I saw an article in Science Daily.
Date: May 12, 2016
Source: Sissa Medialab
Summary: Aesthetic treatments based on botulin toxin affect the perception of emotions, new research shows. The consequence of having Botox injected, scientists explain, depends on a temporary block of proprioceptive feedback, a process that helps us understand other people’s emotions by reproducing them on our own bodies.
- My speculation links my observation and theirs and suggests intentionally controlling emotions, such as chronic depression. If I could not express or feel some emotions because I couldn’t flex the muscles associated with the expressions of those emotions, might it be possible that people with chronic depression could ease their symptoms by blocking the nerves to the muscles associated with those emotions?
- If that is possible it would be a wonderful advancement in treating depression, because the usual treatments for disorders such as depression and bi-polar disorder suppress all emotions and leave the person feeling just as miserable, but in a different way. Also long-term use of some drugs, lithium for example, eventually destroys vital organs and the victim dies. Perhaps only tiny amounts of Botox put into exactly the right place would eliminate some chronic problems and not cause any long-term effects.
- If Botox were injected into the specific location where the problem arose it would block the problem without affecting the rest of the body.