January 24 is Moebius Syndrome Awareness Day. Moebius syndrome is a rare condition characterized by facial paralysis and impaired eye movement, which can cause reduced facial expression and other effects. Today’s date was chosen because it marks the birth date of Professor Paul Julius Moebius (Möbius) (1853-1907), who first diagnosed the disorder in 1888. People are encouraged to help raise awareness and understanding of the condition by wearing purple, taking part in the Express Yourself social media campaign, and of course learning about the condition and talking to people.
You can learn more about Moebius on the Facial Palsy UK website. We can also highly recommend The Invisible Smile: Living Without Facial Expression by Jonathan Cole and Henrietta J. Spalding (Oxford University Press, 2008). Henrietta is Head of Advocacy at Changing Faces, and you can read a short interview about her experience living with Moebius syndrome here.