If You Have Poor Balance, You May Have a Vision Problem

Most people with balance problems do not feel comfortable, safe, or free in their environment.  Does that sound like you or someone you know?

Angela was one such patient who was dealing with a lot of balance problems, dizziness, motion sensitivities and had trouble getting through her work day - having to stand up for hours.  She got better and started to feel much more comfortable after just a few months. 

We have many patients who come to our office seeking help with balance and movement.  Perhaps you have had a traumatic brain injury (TBI), a concussion, whiplash, or stroke and get a sense that "something is 'off'" with your balance. 

 

You may not even be able to put a finger on what is going on or why. 

 

Many times it can be hard to describe.  If you've sought treatment elsewhere for your balance problem (i.e. physical therapy, vestibular therapy, medications for balcne disorders) and you are not finding them helpful, we could help identify whether you have a vision problem that is making it harder to maintain balance, move with ease and maintain normal posture.  

It's not easy to live without the ability to balance.  It could affect your walking (gait), sports performance, driving, social and work skills.  Often times, people with balance problems have to concentrate and put so much effort into it that they feel tired.  As a result, they develop coping skills, adaptive responses, and change their lifestyle so much that they minimize movement as much as possible. 

 

So how would a vision problem cause a balance problem?

You get your ability to maintain balance by a combination of three factors.  

  1. Seeing (vision)

  2. Vestibular system (inner ear)

  3. Feeling (Proprioception)

Vision is the dominant sense.  The most powerful and provides the most authoritative information for you when you are figuring out what you need to do with your body.  Scientific experiments show that if your ears tell you one thing and your eyes tell you another thing, your brain will accept the message from the eyes, not the ears.  Same with the other senses.  

The most common type of vision problem causing poor balance is a Binocular Vision Problem. This is when they eyes have become uncoupled, out of sync and provide your brain with faulty input).  Most of us know the saying "garbage in, garbage out".  If your brain doesn't get accurate visual input, the it's going to provide your body with poor instructions for movements, balancing and postural control.  

At our vision therapy clinic we can diagnose and treat these binocular vision problems quite easily, safely and effectively.  If you are struggling with your balance and you have not gotten the help or improvements you expected then fill out the form below so we can help you take the right steps to feeling comfortable, safe and free in your environment again.