VESTIBULAR REHABILITATION THERAPY
The vestibular system is responsible for collecting information about our balance and it’s sitting in the inner ear right beside the hearing organ.
We maintain balance with input from our eyes, inner ear (vestibular system), and muscles, skin, and joints (sensory/proprioceptive system).
Vestibular rehabilitation therapy is a specialized form of exercise-based therapy designed to alleviate both primary and secondary symptoms of vestibular disorders.
The primary issue includes- dizziness, loss of balance, and vision problems.
The secondary issue includes- nausea, fatigue, decreased strength, lack of endurance, and problem with concentration.
Vestibular rehabilitation therapy gives the best results in Benign paroxysmal positional vertigo (BPPV), Vestibular neuritis, Labyrinthitis, Vestibular hypofunction, Stroke, Brain Injury, and Cervicogenic dizziness, etc.
The ultimate goal of Vestibular rehabilitation therapy is to correct balance deficits and reduce or eliminate other symptoms (e.g. dizziness, nausea).
Physiotherapy management in vestibular rehabilitation includes:
Stretching and strengthening exercises for appropriate muscle balance.
Balance and Walking exercises.
Repositioning maneuvers for BPPV.
Gaze stabilization exercises. The goal of this exercise is for your eyes to stay on one spot while your head is moving, for this take your thumb in front of your with arm extended and you stare at your thumb and you turn your head back and forth and up and down, do it slowly then progressively increase the speed.
Energy conservation technique.
The Physiotherapist will teach you some home exercise programs like:
Eye exercise- Keeping your head still, looking up and down, look side to side. Hold a finger out at arm’s length, focus on your finger and bring it toward your nose then back out again.
Head exercise- Move your head up and down, then side to side with eyes open, and repeat with eyes closed.
Sitting exercise- Hold an object in front of you, and turn your head 45 degrees to left and right while keeping your eye focused on the object. Sit on edge of the bed flip your body to the left return to your sitting position then flip your body to the right. Place an object on the floor in front of you, reach down to pick it up then return to an upright position and bend forwards to pick up objects from the floor. Turn to the left to place the object behind you, then turn to the right to pick up the object.
Standing exercise- Get up from the sitting position turn 360 degrees to the left and sit down repeat with the right side. From standing bend forward to touch the floor and return to standing, while standing makes sudden 90 degrees turns with eyes open then closed. Stand on one foot with eyes open then closed, and start hopping on the left foot and then the right foot.
Lying down exercise- roll head then whole body from side to side.
Walking exercise- while walking look side to side, and walk heel-toe forwards and backward with eyes open and closed. Sign stepping walk.