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Vestibular Rehabilitation

More than 1/3 of adults in the U.S. 40 and older have experienced some sort of vestibular dysfunction.

We have SOLUTIONS for dizziness, vertigo and balance disorders to keep you feeling your best.

The vestibular system connects the inner ear to the brain and helps control balance and eye movement. Diseases or injuries that damage this system can result in vestibular disorders, however, they also can occur for unknown reasons. Our vestibular rehabilitation experts can evaluate and treat patients who suffer from symptoms that include:
  • Vertigo (sensation of spinning)
  • Dizziness
  • Unsteadiness
  • Nausea
  • Balance problems
  • Blurred vision or visual disturbances
  • Motion sensitivity
  • Benign Paroxysmal Positional Vertigo (BPPV)
  • Patients with long-term disorders that have undergone other treatments with little or no success

Vestibular Rehabilitation Therapy is observed to assist approximately 90% of patients.

Causes of Vestibular Disorders

  • Motor vehicle accidents
  • Concussion
  • Ear infections
  • Aging
  • Insidious onset, such as BPPV (Benign Paroxysmal Positional Vertigo)
  • Unilateral/Bilateral vestibular hypofunction (reduced inner-ear function on 1 or both sides)
    • Meniere’s disease
    • Labyrinthitis
    • Vestibular neuritis
  • Acute or abrupt loss of vestibular function following surgery for vestibular problems

Benefits of Vestibular Rehabilitation

  • Improved balance
  • Reduction in falls
  • Decreased sensation of dizziness and spinning
  • Increase safety
  • Improve overall quality of life

Some vestibular disorders may only require a couple treatments for complete relief, while other conditions are much more complex and require months of home exercises that can be provided and progressed by one of our vestibular rehab clinicians every 2 weeks.

Vestibular Evaluation

Our vestibular rehab clinician will perform a thorough assessment to evaluate your:

  • Eye & Head Coordination
  • Balance & Gait
  • Motion Sensitivity
  • Testing for BPPV

Vestibular Rehab Therapy

Vestibular Rehab Therapy is an exercise-based program designed by a trained physical therapist to assist in problems related to balance, dizziness/vertigo or visual control due to inner ear problems. Treatment may include:

  • Repositioning techniques or exercises, such as the Eppley maneuver or Semont Technique
  • Habituation Exercises: repetitive movements that provoke symptoms to “re-train” the brain to interpret signals appropriately
  • Balance Exercises
  • Vestibular Ocular Exercises: Head and eye movement exercises to help you regain visual stabilization

BPPV (Benign Paroxysmal Positional Vertigo)

BPPV is one of the most common causes of vertigo, leading individuals to feel their environment is spinning. These symptoms are typically brief periods of mild to severe vertigo experienced with changes in position of your head, such as when lying down at night, rolling over in bed or getting out of bed. Vertigo can cause nausea and vomiting, as well.

Caused by:

  • Calcium carbonate material (“ear crystals”) break off from a part of your inner ear
  • The broken crystals move inside the canal and stimulate nerve endings causing dizziness.
  • The majority of cases occur insidiously, although can be associated with head trauma or inner ear infection.

How PT Can Help:

  • Fortunately, this condition can be treated very quickly and effectively by one of our vestibular therapists. The treatment consists of moving the head in specific directions utilizing gravity to move the crystals back to the appropriate locations.
  • Research has shown that 90% of cases of BPPV can be resolved within 2 to 5 vestibular therapy visits with no medication needed.
  • Other treatments include exercises that will assist with:
    • Improving your balance
    • Helping the brain “correct” differences in the inner ear signals
    • Strengthening your ability to focus your eyes and vision

We give our patients with BPPV top priority to ensure they get feeling better as quickly as possible!