Biofeedback for vertigo and dizziness complaints

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Today, we know that vertigo arises as a result of conflicting information to the brain. For example, if one of the equilibrium organs in the inner ear is less well than the other, the center of equilibrium in the brain receives differing information. Since this information contradicts itself, a subjective feeling of dizziness and vertigo often also accompanied by a fall inclination arises. You are in the truest sense of the word out of balance.

The central compensation

If the damage remains in the inner ear for a long time, the brain can get used to the conflicting information. It learns to weigh the information differently and in this way creates a new balance. The vertigo disappears gradually and occurs only in special stress situations with high demands on a healthy balance system. This learning process of the brain is called central compensation. It is based on the so-called neuroplasticity, the ability of our brain to form new neural connections and networks. In young people, this ability is more pronounced than in older people. Therefore, the vertigo symptoms improve faster the younger a patient is. Especially for people from middle age, therefore, an intensive and above all effective training is required. Thus, the vertigo symptoms can be improved as quickly as possible and the risk of falling can be reduced.

Physiotherapy and biofeedback

This learning process can be promoted with a targeted vertigo training, which gives the brain time and again information about the movement in the room. It is important to differentiate between simple exercise exercises and physiotherapy of so-called biofeedback methods, which provide the brain with additional helpful information during training and are thus much more effective. Optical, acoustic or touch stimuli show the person concerned his position in space and replace the missing information, for example, from the equilibrium organ in the inner ear via other sensory channels.

Depending on the nature of the cause of dizziness and age, a dizziness training takes different lengths. A noticeable improvement occurs, however, especially in the biofeedback process but very quickly: in scientific studies could usually be found after ten training sessions, a significant improvement in the dizziness.

Further information on exercise targeting vertigo symptoms can be found here.

Author: Dr. med. Uso Walter (ENT-specialist)