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Decoding Vestibular Rehabilitation: Is it PT or OT?

Decoding Vestibular Rehabilitation: Is it PT or OT?
Dr. Garrett Stroup. Physical Therapist in Roseburg Area.


Dr. Garrett C. Stroup

DPT, VRC - Owner and Founder

We help athletes and active adults regain control of their injury without expensive surgeries or medications, so they can keep going.


Vestibular disorders, encompassing conditions that affect the inner ear and vestibular system, can disrupt one’s balance and quality of life. Vestibular rehabilitation, a specialized therapy, plays a crucial role in addressing these issues. However, there’s often confusion about whether vestibular rehabilitation falls under physical therapy (PT) or occupational therapy (OT). In this comprehensive blog post, we will demystify this confusion, elucidating the distinctions between PT and OT in the context of vestibular rehabilitation. Understanding the roles of these therapies is vital for patients seeking appropriate care and practitioners aiming to provide specialized services.

Defining Vestibular Rehabilitation

1. Vestibular Disorders Overview:

  • Briefly introduce vestibular disorders and their impact on balance, dizziness, and overall well-being. Discuss the prevalence of these disorders and the necessity of specialized rehabilitation.

2. Vestibular Rehabilitation Explained:

  • Define vestibular rehabilitation as a systematic approach designed to address vestibular disorders. Explain how this therapy focuses on improving balance, stability, and reducing symptoms like dizziness and vertigo.

Vestibular Rehabilitation and Physical Therapy (PT)

1. The Role of Physical Therapists in Vestibular Rehabilitation:

  • Clarify that physical therapists are the primary practitioners in vestibular rehabilitation. Discuss their expertise in assessing vestibular disorders, diagnosing issues, and designing personalized treatment plans.

2. Physical Therapy Techniques in Vestibular Rehabilitation:

  • Detail the techniques physical therapists employ, including canalith repositioning maneuvers (e.g., Epley maneuver), gaze stabilization exercises, balance training, and habituation exercises. Explain how these techniques address specific vestibular dysfunctions.

Vestibular Rehabilitation and Occupational Therapy (OT)

1. The Scope of Occupational Therapy in Vestibular Disorders:

  • Explain that while OTs are not the primary practitioners in vestibular rehabilitation, they can play a supportive role in specific cases. Discuss how OTs may address lifestyle adjustments, environmental modifications, and coping strategies to enhance patients’ daily functioning.

2. Collaboration between PT and OT:

  • Emphasize the importance of collaboration between PTs and OTs in providing holistic care. Discuss scenarios where both therapies work together to address the multifaceted needs of patients, ensuring comprehensive rehabilitation.


Choosing the Right Therapy

1. Factors to Consider:

  • Provide guidance to readers on how to choose the appropriate therapy for vestibular disorders. Discuss the importance of consulting a healthcare professional for a proper diagnosis and personalized treatment plan.

2. The Role of Interdisciplinary Care:

  • Highlight the significance of interdisciplinary care, where PTs, OTs, and other healthcare providers collaborate to offer comprehensive support to patients. Discuss how this approach ensures a well-rounded treatment experience.

Expert Vestibular Rehabilitation at OrMobility Physical Therapy & Performance

1. Our Integrated Approach:

  • Describe your clinic’s integrated approach, emphasizing collaboration between PTs and OTs to provide comprehensive vestibular rehabilitation. Share success stories that exemplify the effectiveness of your interdisciplinary care model.

2. Scheduling a Consultation:

  • Encourage readers experiencing vestibular disorders to schedule a consultation at your clinic. Provide clear contact information, inviting them to benefit from the expertise of your team in achieving balance and improved quality of life.

Conclusion – Navigating the Path to Balance

Your Journey to Balance Starts Here

Understanding the roles of PT and OT in vestibular rehabilitation is pivotal for patients seeking specialized care. At OrMobility Physical Therapy & Performance, we offer an integrated approach, bringing together the expertise of PTs and OTs to address the multifaceted needs of individuals with vestibular disorders. If you or someone you know is struggling with balance issues, take the first step toward a life of stability and confidence. Schedule a consultation with our experienced team today. Let us be your partners in the journey toward a vestibular disorder-free, empowered life.

Contact us now to schedule your consultation and embark on your path to a life of stability and well-being.

OrMobility Physical Therapy & Performance

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