Chiropractic Meridian ID What Is Vestibular Therapy

Before we dive into what it is, let’s look at who may benefit. This will give you a good idea of what it is.

  • Do you have dizziness or feel off balance if you shake your head left and right or
    up and down?
  • Do you get nausea or have anxiety when you turn around?
  • Have you suffered a concussion, traumatic brain injury, whiplash, or stroke?
  • Do you notice the room is spinning or you are spinning?
  • Do you feel your balance isn’t as good or maybe you are bumping into things and
    consider yourself a clumsy person?
  • Have dizzy or nausea when being a passenger, but being the driver isn’t as bad?

If any of the above resonate, then Idaho Brain and Body Institute in Meridian ID is right for you.


Vestibular therapy is aimed at improving the function of the vestibular system. It is responsible for sensing gravity and responding to any movement whether it is turning or going in an elevator.

This system is broken into peripheral and central components. The peripheral system usually gets all the attention. If you go to your doctor complaining of dizziness they will often mention inner ear crystals that just need to be moved. This would be the peripheral component. There are other things that impact the peripheral component such as infections.

The central component tends to be the more frustrating cases. When information is sent from the receptors in the inner ear it must go to the brain stem. Where it is processed is considered the central component. Unfortunately, many providers aren’t familiar with this system and don’t know what to do with it. Most patients will end up with a medication such as meclizine or scopolamine to try and help.

Central issues can be the result of brain injuries and infections. Prolonged peripheral issues can also impact the central component.

It should be noted that while the vestibular system has those 2 components it interacts with numerous other parts of the body including the oculomotor system and cervical spine.

Now that you have a good idea of what the vestibular system is, let’s review the therapy aspect.


If you are dealing with many of the symptoms above and medication didn’t work, then there is a good chance you will be sent to vestibular therapy. The type of therapy varies greatly depending upon the skill of the provider. Don’t assume because you’ve previously done it that you have done the best version of it.

Vestibular therapy is routinely used for dizziness, concussion, whiplash, balance disorders, and traumatic brain injuries.

Examples of treatment would include:

  • Balance Training: may include body rotation, using computerized balance
    software, and balance pads when performing any other therapy,
  • Oculomotor: eye movement exercises such as fixating on a target when moving
    your head, tracking, or rapidly shifting your eyes to a new target.
  • Cervical spine exercises: usually integrated with eye movement exercises or
    hand-eye coordination.

All of these need to be processed appropriately to feel stable.

Once again, I can’t stress enough that this is much more than balance therapy as different systems interact with the vestibular system to create stability.


We use an integrative approach to vestibular rehabilitation. In our experience the best results are achieved when stacking it with other therapies. This includes oculomotor, cervical spine, sensory, hand-eye coordination, and cognitive tasking.

It wouldn’t make sense to try and rehab the body as isolated pieces since it operates as a whole unit.

In addition to those therapies, it is important to make sure the body is healthy as well. There is nothing worse than trying to improve the health of the brain but there are problems with blood sugar, hormones, anemia, blood pressure, or other things. If these aren’t taken care of then many will not keep their results and they will unwind on them.

If you’d like our help, contact our team today to start getting the answers you need and deserve.