31 March, 2017
Balance enables us to remain upright. It is a primitive function and acts as the foundation for our physical, cognitive and social skills. Imagine trying to write whilst falling off the seat or to have a conversation when you are constantly falling over. Yes, these are dramatic examples but it paints a picture of how vital balance is to our lives.
Balance is important for walking, riding a bike, throwing a ball, concentration and learning. Poor balance can result in falls, painful injuries, fatigue, headaches or dizziness.
What balance tests are performed?
Balance involves the coordination of three sensory systems:
- Eyes - visual system
- Ears - vestibular system
- Body - proprioceptive system
Each of these systems can be tested individually to help determine the most effective and efficient treatment approach.
This can include testing:
- Eye movements and reflexes
- Specific movements of the neck and body
- Movement of the muscles and joints of the body
Falls Risk Assessment at Body and Brain Centre - 2016
What does computerised balance testing involve?
You will be asked to stand barefoot on a force-platform. The force-platform tracks the pressure of your feet and sends this information to specialised computer software. This software performs complicated calculations to assess different parameters of balance and to compares this to a normative database of people the same age, sex, height and weight.
These results help guide your treatment approach and home rehabilitation exercises. Additionally, they can be used to monitor your progress.
Is the computerised balance test difficult?
For most people, it is not difficult at all. However, if you struggle to stand unassisted it could be difficult and we may have to alter the test slightly.
Computerised Balance Assessment at Body & Brain Centre - 2016
How expensive is computerised balance testing?
Body and Brain Centre does not charge for the assessment as part of our Chiropractic Neuro-Rehabilitation consultations. These tests are so valuable that we don’t want anyone to miss out due to an expense.
I am interested in assessing my balance but do not understand why a Chiropractic consultation is required?
Dr Cassie, our Chiropractor trained in neuro-rehabilitation, has post-graduate training in balance disorders and brain-based therapies. Cassie will perform a thorough examination to find the cause of your dizziness, headaches or balance difficulties. Depending on the cause of your complaint, you may benefit from specific joint mobilisations, massage and stretches as well as home exercises such as vestibular rehabilitation. Some conditions will need to be co-managed with a medical neurologist or your GP.
About the Author
Dr Cassie Atkinson-Quinton - Chiropractor, Brain Health Coach & Biofeedback Practitioner
Dr Cassie is a Chiropractor and Brain Health Coach. Having a special interest in treating nerves and brain-based conditions like nerve pain, chronic pain, dizziness, whiplash, migraines and fibromyalgia. She's one of a handful of practitioners to be trained in Neuro-Rehabilitation, Neurofeedback, QEEG Functional Brain Scans and Brain Health Coaching.
She’s had concussions and atypical migraines as well as a vestibular disorder called Labyrinthitis. During this time, she would hold on to tables to avoid falling over. She understands the journey coming from a family of chronic pain and migraine sufferers.