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Dizziness (vertigo) - Simple Exercises Effective for Vertigo
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Dizziness (vertigo)

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Simple Exercises Effective for Vertigo

Vertigo, an inner ear problem causing dizziness, is a condition many elderly people face. According to studies, those suffering from vertigo may find relief in simple, inexpensive exercise techniques.

The dizziness caused by this common condition can lead to substantial disability with falls, fear of falling, and loss of independence.

Exercise therapy, or vestibular rehabilitation, has proven to have positive results on elderly people suffering from symptoms related to vertigo. This simple treatment involves eye, head and body movements, stimulating the balance system. Since it does not require any equipment, researchers are certain that just about anyone can perform the exercises.

Aside from the usual treatment involving medication, doctors also found that motivation is an important factor for treating dizziness. Without motivation and confidence, patients quickly give up on curing their symptoms and immediately resort to using a cane or walker for stability.

In a study, researchers assigned 170 patients with vertigo to discover the influence of exercise therapy. They:

  • Divided the patients into two groups: Those receiving exercise therapy (83) and those receiving the usual medical care (87)
  • Patients in the exercise therapy group received one 30-40 minute appointment with a primary care nurse who taught the exercises
  • All patients had a 3-month and 6-month check-up to note progress
  • Sixty-seven percent of the patients experienced a significant improvement, while only 38 percent who received conventional medical care showed progress

Researchers concluded that exercise therapy improved symptoms, postural stability and dizziness-related handicaps in those suffering from chronic dizziness or vertigo.

Annals of Internal Medicine October 19, 2004;141:598-605

 

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