VRTs & Over-reliance on Visual System

Hi - I have been performing VRTs for the last 5 years (been dizzy 6) and it has substantially helped me cope with this disorder. I have been able to reduce the # of exercises, but cannot seem to reduce them further or stop completely without encountering major headache and visual deficiencies.

I have heard of that an over-reliance on the visual vestibular system is not good either over time, and I was wondering if folks had any thoughts on how I could overcome this and reduce my VRTs, or simply feedback based on experience.

I am a patient of Dr. Hain’s and he said they are generally not helpful after about 6 months but when I stop, things get really terrible after about 1.5 days. I perform 4 exercises / 3Xs per day for about a minute each.


Are you on meds ? Meds + VRT is more effective.

I did vrt for one year and I would say the first 6 months helped substantially, they got me functioning. I spent another 6 months doing vrt to try continue improve, tbh it was a crutch for me as I was waiting to see neuro to get diagnosis. For me the breakthru has been meds and they have been great for my condition. If you are not on meds, maybe look to see a neuro with some exp in migraine. Best of luck

Hi Chris

Interesting question you’ve brought up, and I see from yr original posts, not for the first time. There does seem to be a consensus that if VRT doesn’t ‘work’ within 6 months, stop. When I saw VRT when 24/7 dizzy she said she could put me right in six months and if not she wanted me to go back in search of revaluation. So there must be a reason you are stuck in this loop with VRT. Seems odd to get withdrawal symptoms from VRT but we are all different. Could be after so long you are overly visual dependent because of the VRT. Most adults are anyway. I’m pretty sure when I did it it made me overly dependent on my feet actually. I suppose you could try withdrawing as you would from medication, by titrating down, slowly cutting the number of repetitions of each exercise over a period of weeks rather than just stopping. Wean yourself away from them gradually. You could try more natural VRT. Walking outside is best daily. Take up Tai Chi. Might be an idea to see an eye specialist if you haven’t already done so to be checked out for any form of eye misalignment. To discover this you need to see a hospital eye doctor, not a local optician. You want an independent opinion not somebody in a position to benefit from selling you spectacles you may not really need. Failing all else perhaps back to Dr Hain. Dr Hain’s may be the answer. He’s very knowledgeable. I know he’s very keen on Effexor for MAV these days and that’s supposed to work wonders with Visual Vertigo and just quite recently he has expanded his operation to include eye specialists. See his website. And, another website you may find of interest is Glarminy.com. All the best. Helen

What VRT do you do?

I would just keep doing the VRTs if they help. I don’t fully understand why you would want to stop them.

I assumed @chris3268 is afraid of becoming overly visual dependent assuming the VRT exercises can ‘overtrain’ one’s brain. I’ve read many times virtually all adults who aren’t actually Visually Impaired are visually dependent. It’s the way of the world it seems. From what I’ve read it’s virtually inevitable for plp with balance disorders because the brain goes looking for other answers if it cannot rely on the ears and the eyes seem obvious choice but visual is more likely to be misled, hence Visual Vertigo.

I’m convinced VRT made me over dependent on my feet for balance so ‘overtraining’ does seem possible. I’d need alot of convincing that VRT could stop an adult being Visually Dependent. Apart from anything else one spends perhaps an hour a day max (yes, I did for six months) doing VRT and the rest of one’s waking hours subconsciously reinforcing one’s visual dependency simply by using one’s eyes for everyday life. Helen