Experiencing dizziness, vertigo or disequilibrium? Bacharach’s Hearing and Balance Center is now offering physical therapy treatment in addition to audiology services to treat patients with vestibular disorders and other conditions.
“A vestibular disorder can have a significant effect on an individual’s wellbeing – impacting their ability to concentrate, affecting their memory and in some cases, causing anxiety and depression,” says Jessica Ryan, PT, DPT.
Symptoms of vestibular disorders, which are prevalent in seniors, can increase the risk of falling.
Otago Exercise Program
To help seniors minimize their fall risk, the Hearing and Balance Center has introduced the new Otago Exercise and Fall Prevention Program. The program consists of a walking program and 17 exercises designed to improve balance and strength of seniors who have muscle weakness, have balance impairments or have a fear of falling.
The exercises are tailored to each individual depending on their weaknesses, which are determined during the patient’s evaluation. “We work with patients to master the various exercises so they can perform them at home – giving them the flexibility to work the exercises into their daily schedules,” says Jessica.
The 30-minute exercises are performed three times a week, along with a walking program. Patients participate in the program for a year, meeting with therapists about seven times while having routine check-in calls.
“The Otago program differs from traditional balance therapy because the program is focused on the long term,” says Jessica. “The goal is to have patients maintain the gains they are making, and we use a longer duration of care to monitor their progress and make adjustments as needed.”
Patients interested in the Otago program can schedule an evaluation to see if the program is right for them. If the evaluation determines the patient needs to improve other areas before participating in the program, patients can work with a Bacharach therapist before being transitioned into the program.
“Seniors who fall are two to three times more likely to fall again,” says Jessica. “The Otago program has been shown to help seniors maintain confidence and alleviate their fear of falling, which helps them be more active.”
For more information on Bacharach’s Otago program or Balance and Hearing Center call