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Vertigo: Brandt-Daroff Exercises for Balance Disorders

  • Date: 2009/07/07 (Rev: 2016/06/13) Disabled World - Disabled World
  • Synopsis : Explains balance disorders and vertigo with instructional videos on Semont Epley and Brandt-Daroff exercises for BPPV and loss of balance.

Main Document

The Brandt-Daroff exercise is one of several exercises intended to speed up the compensation process and end the symptoms of vertigo.

Vertigo is defined as a condition where a person feels like they are moving when they are not. Often it feels like a spinning or swaying movement. There may be associated nausea, vomiting, sweating, or difficulties walking. It is typically worsened when the head is moved. Vertigo is the most common type of dizziness. When you're dizzy, you may feel lightheaded or lose your balance. If you feel that the room is spinning, you have vertigo.

There are various options for treating balance disorders. One option includes treatment for a disease or disorder that may be contributing to the balance problem, such as ear infection, stroke, multiple sclerosis, spinal cord injury, Parkinson's disease, neuromuscular conditions, acquired brain injury, cerebellar dysfunctions and/or ataxia, or some tumors, such as acoustic neuroma.

NOTE: These exercises will only work if you feel dizzy as you do them

Brandt-Daroff exercises are thought to disperse any tiny particles away from the balance center in your ear, therefore getting rid of the cause of dizziness.

  • Sit on the edge of the bed. Turn your head 45 degrees (look to the left). Lie down quickly on the right side. Ensure the back of the head rests on the bed. Wait 20 to 30 seconds or until the dizziness stops.
  • Sit upright. Wait 20 to 30 seconds for any dizziness to settle.
  • Repeat on the other side. Turn the head slightly to the right before lying down quickly on the left side.
  • Do five times on each side (takes about 10 minutes).
  • Repeat three times a day

Brandt-Daroff exercises are generally used to treat BPPV, and sometimes to treat labyrinthitis or vestibular neuritis, at home and are performed in three sets per day for two weeks.

The Brandt-Daroff exercise relieves symptoms of vertigo within 3 to 14 days for almost all people.

In a small number of cases, vertigo returns and has to be treated again.

Performing Brandt-Daroff exercises can cause vertigo, nausea, and vomiting, which may discourage people from continuing the exercise, particularly when the vertigo experienced is severe.

NOTE: Do not start doing the Brandt-Daroff exercises for at least 2 days after the Epley or Semont maneuver, unless specifically instructed otherwise by your health care provider.

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