A team of Mayo Clinic doctors trained in balance problems, including doctors trained in ear, nose and throat conditions, brain and nervous system conditions (neurologists) and other specialties, treats your condition.
Your treatment depends on the cause of your balance problems. Doctors will work with you to develop an individualized treatment plan. Your treatment may include:
- Vestibular rehabilitation. People with inner ear or central nervous system disorders may benefit from balance retraining exercises (vestibular rehabilitation). Therapists trained in balance problems will work with you to design a customized program of balance retraining and exercises. Therapy may help you compensate for imbalance, adapt to less balance and maintain physical activity.
- Fall prevention. In vestibular rehabilitation, your therapists will work with you to prevent falls. Some people may benefit from a balance aid, such as a walking stick or cane. Therapists also may discuss with you home safety and assistive devices to help reduce your risk of falls in your home.
- Positioning procedures. If the cause of your balance problems is benign paroxysmal positional vertigo (BPPV), a therapist may conduct a positioning procedure, which involves maneuvering the position of your head. This procedure clears particles out of your inner ear canal and deposits them into a different area of your ear, which often reduces or resolves your symptoms. Canalith repositioning procedures may help improve your condition.
- Diet and lifestyle changes. Diet and lifestyle changes may help some people with balance problems. If you have Meniere's disease, reducing your salt intake may help your symptoms. Some people with migraine-related dizziness also may benefit by reducing caffeine, alcohol, nicotine and chocolate. If you experience drops in blood pressure when standing (orthostatic hypotension), you may need to drink more fluids, wear compressive stockings or undergo postural conditioning.
- Medications. If you have Meniere's disease, migrainous vertigo or psychiatric disorders, some medications may help manage your balance problems.
- Surgery. If you have Meniere's disease or acoustic neuroma, your treatment team may recommend surgery. Stereotactic radiosurgery may be an option for some people with acoustic neuroma. This procedure delivers radiation precisely to your tumor and doesn't require an incision.
Read more about canalith repositioning procedure and exercises to prevent falls.