The vestibular system is part of the inner ear and brain that is involved in processing information to control both balance and eye movement.
The main symptoms are vertigo, dizziness or balance problems. Other symptoms can include muscle tension, headaches, fatigue and anxiety
Vestibular rehabilitation is using physiotherapy to retrain the brain to process the information correctly. This is done through specific exercises and in some cases, manoeuvres to alleviate your symptoms.
Conditions that can cause vertigo or dizziness are:
- Benign Paroxysmal Positional Vertigo (B.P.P.V.)
- Meniere’s Disease
- Cervicogenic Headache
- Vestibular Neuritis
- Poor balance due to aging
- Some diagnosed stable central lesions
What does the treatment involve?
Your physiotherapist (Ahmad or Mariola) will take a detailed history of your condition whether it is vertigo, dizziness or a balance issue.. The initial assessment usually takes one hour but at the moment (due to Covid-19)) this is being done in two parts. The first part is a phone or video consultation and this will be followed by an appointment in the clinic where your physiotherapist will use a series of tests to diagnose what is the cause of your symptoms.
Treatment will start immediately and the type of treatment will depend on the diagnosis. Occasionally the tests carried out at the first appointment may cause a brief increase in symptoms and because of this, we advise that you bring someone with you for the first appointment, in case you do not feel well enough to drive home.
How long will it take?
That depends on the diagnosis but 75% of patients require three or fewer appointments. Sometimes the exercises may initially cause an increase in symptoms as the brain and body adjust to the new movements.
As you practise your exercises, your symptoms should decrease and your vertigo, dizziness and balance should improve.
Please do let us know if you are experiencing any side effects.
How do I book?
You do not need a referral letter to attend but it is best that you have been assessed by a doctor at some stage (either for this or a previous episode of symptoms).
You can book an initial appointment (vestibular rehab) online to see either Mariola or Ahmad.
If booking by phone, please make sure you specify that the appointment is for vertigo treatment so that the correct appointment and physiotherapist is booked.
If you have been referred by a doctor, don’t forget to bring the referral letter with you and also do bring a list of any medications you are taking (both prescribed and over the counter).