Shedding Light on Balance Disorders

If you experience chronic balance problems, you understand how frustrating it can be to have your daily struggles underestimated or even ignored. It can feel like an invisible illness.

That’s why local hearing care provider Dr. Daniel Samadi wants to use Balance Awareness Week, September 18–24, to bring attention to vestibular disorders such as chronic vertigo, vestibular migraine, and age-related imbalance.

“People with vestibular issues often have difficulty getting a diagnosis and don’t realize how common their problems are,” says Dr. Daniel Samadi. “Not only are the symptoms hard to recognize, but they’re also hard to describe. We hope that by raising awareness, the general public will be more understanding, and those with vestibular problems will recognize the signs and consult an audiologist for treatment.”

Get the facts so you can educate and support your community:

  • The vestibular system, which controls your balance and equilibrium, includes parts of the brain, eyes, inner ear, and sensory systems such as the skin, joints, and muscles.
  • More than 35% of adults ages 40 and older — in both the U.S. and Canada — will experience some form of vestibular dysfunction.
  • Vestibular disorders occur from a range of causes, such as disease, traumatic brain injury, chemical or drug toxicity, aging, autoimmune issues, and ear infection.
  • Most vestibular disorders don’t yet have a cure, but they are treatable.
  • Treatment depends on the specific situation, but medication, lifestyle changes, and physical therapy are the most common treatments. Many with vestibular problems can resume a more active lifestyle.

“The first step to getting your balance back is to take symptoms seriously and seek help,” says Dr. Samadi. “A professional evaluation, diagnosis, and treatment plan can help improve your mobility, confidence, and quality of life.”

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