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Vestibular Therapy

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Old 01-08-2013, 11:57 AM   #1
musiclover
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Default Vestibular Therapy

Has anyone done vestibular therapy? What are your thoughts on how effective it is? I'm only 2 weeks into my 2nd concussion and never tried it with my first, but my dizziness and disequilibrium this item around is a major issue and I'm looking for ways to cope.

Also, for those who have done it, does it intensify your symptoms while you are actually in it? I definitely don't want to aggravate these symptoms any further.

Thanks in advance
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Musiclover
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PCS "survivor" - first concussion 10/2010 with PCS for nearly a year. Hit back of head on a shelf. Symptoms were head and neck pain, vertigo, nausea, lethargy, anxiety & depression. Experienced greatest amount of recovery between 9-12 months, with the following year being much, much better
.


2nd concussion 12/2012 - hit front left forehead on wooden edge of couch. Currently dealing with a return of PCS symptoms including headache, nausea, vertigo, brain fog, and lethargy.
.


~ just trying to take it one day at a time
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~
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Old 01-08-2013, 07:40 PM   #2
CW21
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Hello-

I am wondering the same thing.

I have seen many youtube videos on it and i was planning on trying this weekend.
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Old 01-08-2013, 09:29 PM   #3
Mokey
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I have been going to a vestibular therapist for about four months now...once a week with exercises at home. It is very important to do something if you have vestibular damage, because it works with the brains neuroplasticity and makes new pathways to do the work of the ones that were damaged and do not get repaired.

Baby steps for vestibular therapy, though. She stops me after I start to feel a bit crazy and dizzy and spinning. Too little does nothing to retrain the brain, and too much is counter-productive.

My exercises consist of wearing a computer mouse on my head, holding another clicker mouse in my hand, and playing computer games (bejewled, shooting at pigs, etc.) with my head controlling the action. The goal is to fixate your eyes on something and get your head to move. I graduated to doing this on a foam to destabilise me a bit, and then eventually I will graduate to playing these same games while the treadmill is moving very slowly.

There are all sorts of different vestibular therapy exercises one can do, and I have found that there is a lot of overlap with the vision therapy exercises. Doing vision therapy while standing is perfect, because it works your proprioceptor system (muscles, etc. which send info to the brain), vision and vestibular (ocular-motor reflex and all that!). It is all interconnected. Anyone that has any damage to that stuff could benefit from some therapy.

When you are able, doing some balance exercises on the WII fit is very good vestibular therapy, but again, you need to do a wee bit and if you feel awful, stop there. Or better yet, stop before you feel awful. I am ok doing a few things on the wii fit, but not much. But getting better. baby steps.

I have been told that damage indicates brain stem damage, which is quite deep and should have been protected!, and is a sign of a long term recovery. Sigh.

Hope this helps. We do what we can!
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Old 01-08-2013, 09:30 PM   #4
SmilinEyesMs305
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I did it for 9 months and it made a REMARKABLE difference in my recovery. There were times when different therapy exercises might cause a flare in symptoms, but I would lay down flat on the floor until it passed, normally a few minutes.

When I started, I couldn't ride in a car without getting disoriented and sick. I couldn't do anything where I wasn't standing directly upright, or I would feel dizzy and have to lay down to make the room stop spinning. It was really awful. Even simple things, like watching hockey or football, (which was a HUGE part of my down time before my accident), made me sick.

It took me 9 months to graduate, but now I am able to watch sports, ride in a car, drive a car and only very rarely have moments where I feel "off". Not so much nauseous or dizzy, but off.

For me it was totally worth it. I HIGHLY recommend it. The first few sessions are rough. But, what you are doing is training your vestibular system to tolerate increasing levels of movement and sensory information. So it's like when you start to exercise. The first few times are rough on your body, but over time you continue to build endurance and strength. Same idea here. However, you therapist will tell you what is a good level to strive for, without overdoing it, (making yourself feel worse or causing your symptoms to flare for hours afterwards, etc.)

If you have any specific questions, feel free to ask
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What Happened: On 3/8/11 I was stopped waiting to merge into traffic when I was rear ended by someone doing 45 mph. I walked away from the accident, to fall into the pit of PCS 5 days later... (I have had 2 previous concussions, but neither developed into PCS.)

Symptoms 3 Years Post: Physical: migraines, infrequent vertigo, neck and back pain (from accident), tinnitus, visual field deficits in left eye, problematic light sensitivity, (including visual seizure activity), noise sensitivity, EXTREME fatigue, semi-frequent disrupted sleep cycles,
Cognitive: semi-frequent Brain fog after cognitive strain, limited bouts of impulsivity, unable to concentrate for more than short periods of time without fatigue, word finding problems, slowed processing speeds, impaired visual memory;
Emotional: easily overstimulated, depression, anxiety;

Treatment so far: Vestibular therapy; Physical Therapy; Vision Therapy; Vitamin Schedule; Limited caffeine; Medications; attempting to limit stress and overstimulation; Yoga; Cognitive Therapy
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Old 01-09-2013, 02:31 PM   #5
MsRriO
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Default How does one get to see a vestibular specialist?

Great info, as I've wondered about this myself. I've not been receiving any therapy to this point, coming up on 3 months post injury.

Mokey, I may have asked this before or maybe you said it but I can't remember. How did you get this therapy in Canada?

For me the terrible neck and head pain are number one, but second is dizziness. I can't travel in a car without feeling sick, turn my head certain ways, feel sick, wake up and look at ceiling... Feel sick. Dizziness isn't exactly circular either... It's not like the room spins like traditional dizziness. It's like a general unsteady feeling like my head is a magic 8ball... That likely makes no sense to anyone. Lol

The more pain I have, the more dizziness affects me.

I had no idea what vestibular therapy was until coming here and even now I'm not really getting it.
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About it: October 26, 2012 I fell backward on an icy parking lot at work. I was on Workers Comp for 9 months. My PCS : everyday headaches became once in a while headaches, and neck pain became manageable. Still have occasional mild dizziness, sometimes fullness in the ears, convergence insufficiency, sequencing struggles, short term memory struggles, verbal processing delays. CT neg, MRI neg. Therapies: prism glasses, acupuncture, icing neck, resting, supplementing, Elavil 20mg at bedtime.

NEW: Completed 12 weeks of physical therapy and returned to work full time.

About me: I'm a marketing manager, a mom with a blended family and wife to a heart attack survivor. I believe my brain injury taught me more than it cost me. I'm grateful to still be me!
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Old 01-09-2013, 04:58 PM   #6
musiclover
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MrsRio - my first concussion over two years ago left me with terrible head and neck pain for many months. I eventually found an amazing physical therapist and massage therapist that were able to literally help me recover and begin to live my life again. I'm sorry you are having those symptoms, they are so difficult to deal with . I truly hope you find something to give you some relief.

My biggest issue with this concussion is the vertigo. WOW! I remember it last time but I think my head and neck pain were so bad the first time that it overshadowed the vertigo. With this concussion, my mornings are horrific. I'm barely able to get the kids off to school before I head back to bed. Yesterday I only made it to get them from school. Today I managed to run an errand and go to the dr, but had to go lay down as soon as we got home.

Anyways here's hoping that we all find some relief. I wouldn't wish this on anyone!! Thanks to all for your input
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Musiclover
.


PCS "survivor" - first concussion 10/2010 with PCS for nearly a year. Hit back of head on a shelf. Symptoms were head and neck pain, vertigo, nausea, lethargy, anxiety & depression. Experienced greatest amount of recovery between 9-12 months, with the following year being much, much better
.


2nd concussion 12/2012 - hit front left forehead on wooden edge of couch. Currently dealing with a return of PCS symptoms including headache, nausea, vertigo, brain fog, and lethargy.
.


~ just trying to take it one day at a time
.
~
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Old 01-09-2013, 09:45 PM   #7
MiaVita2012
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I just started vestibular therapy 3 days a week....So far my symptoms have been bad a lot of woozy, sick to stomach, nausea, fatigue, headaches,and sensitive to light....2 of those days I get myofascial massage and helps with the headaches...

*I was wondering what others in vestibular therapy take for the nausea?I am really not liking this therapy but I know it is a must in my situation*
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What Happened: In 2011 I was in a MVA
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Symptoms: Physical: I am always cold in any season!!I cannot tolerate anything pressure on my head(sun glasses,hats)longer then a hour,Lock jaw/Displaced TMJ, Dropsey, Hands go numb, Arms go numb, back of head numb (when asleep),Muscle spasms in face & upper body,migraines, concentration headaches, dizziness, nausea, neck and back trauma (from accident), tinnitus, extreme light sensitivity, noise sensitivity, EXTREME fatigue, impaired vestibular system, balance off, Pupils NEVER equal, disrupted sleep cycles,speech problems.

Cognitive: Cognitive Behavior, Brain fog, impulsivity, speech problems, word finding problems, slowed processing speeds, impaired visual memory, impaired complex attention

Emotional: Unable to handle stress or overstimulation without getting extremely irritable or angry, easily overstimulated, MAJOR depression, major anxiety, Panic attacks

Treatment so far: Treatment for PCS,PTSD,Depression & panic,Vestibular therapy, Physical therapy, Vitamin Schedule,Walking,No Dairy, No eggs, No caffeine, No artificial coloring, Sleep with 2 pillows, Very little sugars consumed, Eat healthy,No alcohol, Medications, limit stress and overstimulation.

~*~Learn to treasure yourself and your Divinity. Be willing to accept yourself completely. Be yourself, be graceful, be kind, be wild, be weird ... be true to yourself~*~
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Old 01-09-2013, 10:03 PM   #8
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For msrrio...My vestibular therapist is a physiotherapist and I am sure there are some in Saskatchewan. Perhaps check the physio associate website to see? I found a useful website from the Sask. gov't a few weeks ago on brain injury...I will see if I can find it.

If I come across anything, I will let you know.
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Old 01-11-2013, 12:35 PM   #9
MiaVita2012
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Default What to Take for vestibular therapy?

I am finishing first week of a 3 day vestibular therapy....I am taking my xanax but I am still very woozy and nausea...is there anything else I can take that will help me feel better but not delay progress?

Any feedback is appreciated*
__________________
What Happened: In 2011 I was in a MVA
.


Symptoms: Physical: I am always cold in any season!!I cannot tolerate anything pressure on my head(sun glasses,hats)longer then a hour,Lock jaw/Displaced TMJ, Dropsey, Hands go numb, Arms go numb, back of head numb (when asleep),Muscle spasms in face & upper body,migraines, concentration headaches, dizziness, nausea, neck and back trauma (from accident), tinnitus, extreme light sensitivity, noise sensitivity, EXTREME fatigue, impaired vestibular system, balance off, Pupils NEVER equal, disrupted sleep cycles,speech problems.

Cognitive: Cognitive Behavior, Brain fog, impulsivity, speech problems, word finding problems, slowed processing speeds, impaired visual memory, impaired complex attention

Emotional: Unable to handle stress or overstimulation without getting extremely irritable or angry, easily overstimulated, MAJOR depression, major anxiety, Panic attacks

Treatment so far: Treatment for PCS,PTSD,Depression & panic,Vestibular therapy, Physical therapy, Vitamin Schedule,Walking,No Dairy, No eggs, No caffeine, No artificial coloring, Sleep with 2 pillows, Very little sugars consumed, Eat healthy,No alcohol, Medications, limit stress and overstimulation.

~*~Learn to treasure yourself and your Divinity. Be willing to accept yourself completely. Be yourself, be graceful, be kind, be wild, be weird ... be true to yourself~*~
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Old 01-11-2013, 02:17 PM   #10
bogart01
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Help vestibular therapy

My husband got his concussion 8 months ago. He was working in a trench and a 16 inch water line exploded on him and a steel ladder fell on his head. He has been diagnosed with pcs the dr's told him he would be better in a couple of weeks, the weeks turned into 6 moths then a year and now they are saying maybe 2 years. He does cognitive therapy 1-2 times a week and pt for his neck 2 times a week. He has a lot of balance problems he can not even close his eyes without falling down. He has done a lot of therapy and it has set him back. He has seizures when his headaches get terrible. He has not had a seizure in 4 months and then 2 days ago he started the vestibular therapy and had a seizure so the neurologist has recommended he stop the therapy until he can tolerate more. I do think that the vestibular therapy does help a lot you just need to take baby steps and start out slow and work your way up to it. My husband went for an hour his first time and it was way to much also doing the exercises at home is very helpful. The thing that has helped the most is lots of rest and know when you are doing to much. He has made a lot of progress but he still has a long way to go
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