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Can severe balance problems ever get better?

This content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.

Physical Therapist

Answer transcribed from Brightway's interview with physical therapist Susan Little:

It depends on what you mean by better. We would all like to be 16 years old again for sure. My balance was better when I was 16 than it is now. We know with age, our balance does decline. Whether we get an orthopedic injury, neurologic injury, or brain injury, our balance declines. However, we can improve our balance gradually and a little bit at a time with those challenging activities and with practice. Again, we know those Olympians improve their abilities to amazing levels. I don't want to go up on one of those balance beams, but I would like to safely be able to walk across the patch of ice in my driveway. In order to work that, balance is critically important for me without a neurologic injury. It is also critical for you and your family member if they have suffered a neurologic injury. Improve that balance in order to keep them safe. 

Answer transcribed from the Brightway Answers interview with recreation therapist Holly Auth:

I would definitely recommend talking to your doctor and/or physical therapist to find the root cause of your balance problems.  For example, your physical therapist would have the best strengthening and balance exercises to assist with your specific need.  On the other hand, your doctor could make sure there’s no underlying condition like vertigo or Meniere's that can be treated with medication and exercise.  However, finding the root cause of your balance issues - whether it's related to your brain injury or something else - is the best way to find out how you can work on those.