Vestibular Rehabilitation for Dizziness and Vertigo
Have you ever felt off balance like you just got off a small boat in a storm? Woke up with a severe spinning sensation that just would not go away?
Over 1.5 Million Canadians Suffer From Chronic Vestibular Problems or Vertigo.
Vestibular Rehabilitation is form of physiotherapy that helps relieve symptoms caused by the vestibular system (the parts of the inner ear and brain that help control balance and eye movements).
The most common symptoms people experience with vestibular disorders are dizziness, vertigo, and imbalance.
- Vertigo is a spinning or whirling sensation; an illusion of movement of self or the world.
- Dizziness is a lightheaded, floating, or rocking sensation.
In addition to the dizziness and vertigo is often nausea and/or vomiting, reduced ability to focus or concentrate, and fatigue.
Anxiety and depression can also form if a patient does not seek help and starts to withdraw themselves from activities they would normal enjoy when not feeling off-balance.
BPPV (Benign Paroxysmal Positional Vertigo) is the most common cause of vertigo due to a peripheral vestibular disorder. It accounts for 20-30% of all patients seen for vertigo.
How Does a Vestibular Rehabilitation Physiotherapist Help?
- We take a comprehensive assessment and history of how and when the symptoms started.
- Key information is gathered about medication, hearing and vision problems, other medical problems, and if the patient has had any falls.
- The visual and vestibular system is checked to see how well the eye movements are being controlled.
- Other tests such as pain, muscle strength, joint and spine range of movement, coordination, posture, standing and walking balance are measured.
- A specific exercise-based program is designed to reduce vertigo and dizziness, gaze instability, and/or imbalance and falls.
- Other skills such as manual therapy is used for any neck joint stiffness and includes specific maneuvers to re-adjust the ear stones (called otoliths) such as is the case for BPPV.