Hearing & Balance

Audiologic (hearing), balance, and medical diagnostic tests help indicate whether you are a candidate for vestibular (balance) rehabilitation. Vestibular rehabilitation is an individualized balance retraining exercise program. The retraining teaches compensations that may decrease dizziness, improve balance, and improve general activity levels. Many audiologists provide limited vestibular rehabilitation. However, other clinicians, such as physical therapists or occupational therapists, are trained to provide more extensive vestibular rehabilitation. Rehabilitation with a clinician who specializes in vestibular rehabilitation may be effective in minimizing or relieving some of the symptoms. This is especially true if the dizziness is caused by head movement, motion sensitivity, or certain positions. Rehabilitation is also excellent for recovery of balance and improving daily functional activities.

When should I see an audiologist?

Audiologists perform audiologic and balance assessment in order to gather information on your hearing and balance functioning. Test results help determine the possible causes of dizziness. Results of these assessments, in combination with medical findings, will provide diagnostic information on how to treat your dizziness and balance difficulties.

Audiologists can give you information to increase your understanding of dizziness. Understanding what is happening is often relief in itself from having to live with the uncertainty of the condition.

Reprinted with permission from “Hearing and Balance.”  Available from http://www.asha.org/public/hearing/ . © Copyright 2013. American Speech-Language-Hearing Association.  All rights reserved.

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