Inactive Meniere's Syndrome
Why is therapy needed?
If the brain cannot rely on the information it receives from the vestibular system, a person’s ability to maintain posture and coordinate balance can become overly dependent on vision or on the information received from the muscles and joints (proprioception).
This can lead to developing new patterns of movement to compensate for the change and to avoid head movements that are apt to create symptoms of dizziness and nausea.
Unfortunately, these types of adaptation can result in headache, neckache, muscle stiffness, general fatigue, and a decrease in the ability to retrain the brain to adjust to the vestibular problem, hence making the symptoms much worse.
Goal of Vestibular Rehabilitation Therapy
The goal of VRT is to retrain the brain to recognize and process signals from the vestibular system in coordination with information from vision and proprioception. This often involves desensitizing the balance system to movements that provoke symptoms. Please note that in order to receive maximum benefit from vestibular therapy, certain medications, such as meclizine (Antivert), diazepam (Valium) and promethazine (Phenergan), must be discontinued, as these types of vestibular system suppressant medications will prevent the brain from adjusting/adapting appropriately to the vestibular rehabilitation exercises.
What happens during vestibular therapy?
A qualified therapist will first perform a thorough evaluation and develop an individualized treatment plan that will include exercises to be performed both in the therapy department and at home that combine specific head and body movements with eye exercises. Treatment may also include increasing activities and exercise in order to strengthen muscles and increase tolerance for certain stimuli.
How does therapy help?
In most cases, balance improves if the exercises are correctly and faithfully performed. Muscle tension, headaches, and fatigue will diminish, and symptoms of dizziness, vertigo, and nausea will decrease or disappear. Many times, vestibular therapy is so successful that no other treatment is required.