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Vertigo: Balance Exercises

Introduction

Many people experience vertigo. If you have Ménière's disease or benign paroxysmal positional vertigo (BPPV), you may have to deal with vertigo throughout your life. The spinning sensation it causes puts you at risk for falling and can also affect your quality of life if it interferes with your level of activity. You can do exercises at home to help your body get used to the confusing signals that cause your vertigo. Doing these exercises may help you cope with your vertigo.

 

Exercises for vertigo often sound very simple. But depending on how bad your vertigo is, you may find them difficult to do. They generally consist of exercises that practice:

  • Maintaining balance while standing still.
  • Maintaining balance while swaying.
  • Maintaining balance while turning.
  • Maintaining balance while walking.
  • Head movements. Head movements are one of the most common triggers of vertigo. Practicing moving your head may help your body learn how to deal with the problems that cause your vertigo.

Test Your Knowledge

People who have vertigo may get help from an exercise program that includes practicing maintaining balance while standing still, turning, swaying, and walking.

  • True
    This answer is correct.

    People who have vertigo may get help from exercises that help maintain balance while standing still, turning, swaying, and walking. Your body can learn to keep its balance while moving. This may help reduce the frequency of vertigo attacks.

  • False
    This answer is incorrect.

    People who have vertigo may get help from exercises that help maintain balance while standing still, turning, swaying, and walking. Your body can learn to keep its balance while moving. This may help reduce the frequency of vertigo attacks.

  •  

Continue to Why?

 

If you experience ongoing bouts of vertigo, no matter what the cause, you have a greater risk of losing your balance and falling. The benefits of doing balance exercises may include:

  • Having better balance with less risk of falling and hurting yourself and others.
  • Improving self-confidence and self-esteem. As your balance improves, you may feel more confident that you can get out more and do more with others.

Within a few days to weeks of consistently doing balance exercises, you may notice a decline in vertigo symptoms.

Test Your Knowledge

Having better balance improves your confidence.

  • True
    This answer is correct.

    If you suffer from vertigo, you may have little confidence in moving around on your own. Balance exercises help improve your balance, which can lead to increased confidence in your ability to function independently.

  • False
    This answer is incorrect.

    If you suffer from vertigo, you may have little confidence in moving around on your own. Balance exercises help improve your balance, which can lead to increased confidence in your ability to function independently.

  •  

Continue to How?

 

Use the following exercises to improve and safeguard your balance. Your vertigo symptoms may improve within a few days to a few weeks.

With each exercise, start out slowly. Over time, you can gradually try to do the exercise for a longer time or do more repetitions. When you first begin, it is important to have someone with you in case you feel you are going to fall. As you progress, you may be able to do some of the exercises on your own.

Test Your Knowledge

You never need help with any of the exercises for balance.

  • True
    This answer is incorrect.

    Although you may be able to do these exercises on your own, if there is any risk of falling or if you do not feel confident, you should ask someone to help you with them. You should consider having someone with you when you begin the exercise program.

  • False
    This answer is correct.

    Although you may be able to do these exercises on your own, if there is any risk of falling or if you do not feel confident, you should ask someone to help you with them. You should consider having someone with you when you begin the exercise program.

  •  

Continue to Where?

 

Exercise can be a valuable tool in dealing with vertigo and imbalance. The exercises in this topic are a start. It is also possible to target exercises to your condition. Talk to your doctor about how to do this.

Organizations

National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication DisordersNational Institutes of Health
31 Center Drive, MSC 2320
Bethesda, MD  20892-2320
Phone: 1-800-241-1044
TDD: 1-800-241-1055
Fax: (301) 402-0018
Email: nidcdinfo@nidcd.nih.gov
Web Address: www.nidcd.nih.gov
 

The National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders, part of the U.S. National Institutes of Health, advances research in all aspects of human communication and helps people who have communication disorders. The website has information about hearing, balance, smell, taste, voice, speech, and language.


Vestibular Disorders Association (VEDA)
P.O. Box 13305
Portland, OR  97213-0305
Phone: 1-800-837-8428
Phone: (503) 229-7705
Fax: (503) 229-8064
Web Address: www.vestibular.org
 

This organization provides information and support for people with dizziness, balance disorders, and related hearing problems. A quarterly newsletter, fact sheets, booklets, videotapes, a list of other members in your area, and information about centers and doctors specializing in balance disorders are all available to members.


More information about vertigo can be found in the following topics:

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Credits

By Healthwise Staff
Primary Medical Reviewer Anne C. Poinier, MD - Internal Medicine
Specialist Medical Reviewer E. Gregory Thompson, MD - Internal Medicine
Last Revised December 19, 2012

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