We all experience dizziness from time to time - but what happens when that issue becomes severe and chronic? In these cases, dizziness can quickly escalate into a debilitating symptom. Often, long-lasting cases of dizziness and similar balance issues are caused by problems with a specific part of our body. This is the vestibular system - a sensory system that is responsible for providing our brain with information about motion, head position, and spatial orientation.
In cases where this system cannot function normally, a specialized type of rehabilitation may be necessary. Vestibular rehabilitation is an exercise-based program to improve balance and reduce dizziness-related problems. And it is available at East Suburban Sports Medicine Center.
If you are struggling with dizziness and balance, our experts would be glad to meet with you, review your medical needs, and create a care plan that will improve your quality of life. Contact us to meet us in our ESSMC Murrysville or ESSMC North Huntingdon.
Vestibular rehabilitation is an exercise-based program involving a variety of physical therapy treatments targeting the vestibular system. The vestibular system includes structures within the inner ear, as well as its connections to the brain and the body. A few of the functions of the vestibular system include:
Typical symptoms of impairments from the vestibular system include dizziness, vertigo or “spinning”, decreased balance, nausea, and headaches. Specific symptoms may vary depending on their cause, however. Note that vestibular disorders are seen in patients of all ages from childhood to older adults. Examples of disorders include the following:
Benign Paroxysmal Positional Vertigo (BPPV) typically causes vertigo or “spinning.” Patients commonly report that they feel the room spinning with specific position changes and may refer to their “crystals being loose.” This diagnosis is quickly and effectively treated with a repositioning maneuver with the supervision of a physical therapist.
Treatments - which vary from disorder to disorder - typically include recalibration of vestibular system reflexes through exercises, balance exercises, repositioning maneuvers or gait exercises during physical therapy. You will learn more about your exact care needs following a diagnosis.
A prescription for vestibular rehabilitation or vertigo therapy is preferred, but you may begin therapy without it by self-referring. Please discuss this with your Primary Care Physician if you feel that you may benefit from vestibular rehabilitation or vertigo therapy.