Vertigo, dizziness and balance issues are some of the most common complaints of people over the age of 65. 42% of the adult population will experience these complaints in their lifetime, but only 15% to 30% will actually seek medical attention.
Dizziness is described in many ways by those who experience such symptoms. These include lightheadedness, blurry vision, an imbalance, a weakness in the legs, headaches or vertigo. There are many possible causes for these symptoms.
Physical therapy for vertigo will depend on which type of vertigo you have. Two of the most common types are Benign Paroxysmal Positional Vertigo (BPPV) and cervicogenic. Each type of vertigo are easily treatable through physical therapy.
Benign Paroxysmal Positional Vertigo (BPPV) is identified by complaints of vertigo with positional changes such as sit to stand, rolling in bed, bending over or looking up. . In this case, crystals in the inner ear become displaced and come to rest in the semi-circular canals. The displacement of these crystals stimulates the brain in an inappropriate manner which results in vertigo. A maneuver called the Epley maneuver is performed by the physical therapist to realign the crystals in the semi-circular canals. The success rate of this maneuver is remarkable and usually only needs to be performed a single time; however, two or three times may be necessary over a week. Once the crystals become relocated through the Epley maneuver symptoms will be resolved.
the neck which effects posture and head position. Normally, the complaints of dizziness coincide with increased head movements along with neck pain. Headaches are also a common complaint. To treat cervicogenic dizziness the physical therapist will emphasize treatments to improve range of motion of the neck and promote better posture through the use of specific exercises designed to reeducate the brain to the proper postural alignment as well as strengthen the appropriate muscles needed to remain in good posture.
Are you suffering from symptoms of vertigo? Schedule an appointment to see one of our therapists today.