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March 31, 2014

What is Vestibular Rehabilitation?

Teamworks Health Clinic is pleased to announce that we will be offering Vestibular Rehabilitation Services. One of our physiotherapists, Maisy Luong, has undergone specialized training in vestibular therapy and can assist you with issues related to the vestibular system. Take a look below to get the answers to some common questions.

 

What and where is the vestibular system?

The vestibular system involves a complex interaction between the eyes, neck, legs and feet that works to keep us oriented; upright and balanced. The system includes the part of the inner ear called the vestibular apparatus and the region in the brain that controls balance and eye movements.

 

Common symptoms of vestibular dysfunction: 

  • Vertigo (i.e. room is spinning)
  • Dizziness
  • Unsteadiness or falls
  • Visual disturbances
  • Hearing loss
  • Tinnitus
  • Pain and fullness in the ears
  • Sensitivity to bustling environments

Vestibular issues can also result in nausea and/or vomiting, headaches, fatigue, poor concentration, inactivity, depression and anxiety.

 

What causes vestibular dysfunction? 

The most common cause is dysfunction of the balance organs in the inner ear or its connections in the brain. Symptoms can be onset from the following causes:

  • Trauma to the head or ear
  • Inner ear infection or mechanical issues
  • Certain medication or disease
  • Tumor or blood flow issues
  • Age related degeneration
  • Issues with other areas of the body such as the eyes, feet, neck and legs

What is vestibular rehabilitation therapy?

Most people will do anything not to feel dizzy. However, the less movement you have, the less improvement will happen. Fortunately, our vestibular system has a tremendous capability to adapt and compensate. The main premise of vestibular rehabilitation is that you must create dizziness in order to get rid of dizziness. Vestibular rehabilitation therapy is an exercise-based program designed to either maximize the body’s ability to compensate for dizziness and balance problems or to eliminate them altogether.

 

What to expect from your first vestibular rehabilitation assessment: 

  • At least one hour of one-to-one evaluation time with a Physiotherapist with advance training in vestibular rehabilitation.
  • Infrared video analysis of eye movements that are generated by certain types of vestibular condition.
  • Education regarding the vestibular system, assessment findings and treatment recommendations.

If you have or know of anyone experiencing these symptoms, give us a call at 604-428-3006 to book an appointment.

Our collective of highly qualified and accredited healthcare practitioners share a passion for professional collaboration and comprehensive patient care. Come and meet us at the clinic.