Balance and Movement Impairments

Also known as: balance system disorders, balance disorders, coordination disorders, balance problems

What are balance and movement impairments?

Balance and movement impairments refers to a wide variety of different conditions that can impact a child’s ability to walk or move properly. It can also lead to other issues such as dizziness, lightheadedness, vertigo and other related problems. The balance system is complex, and many different factors can lead to the development of a balance and movement impairment.

What causes balance and movement impairments?

The cause of balance and movement impairments can vary widely. Some are genetic disorders that are present from birth. Others are the result of an injury or another disease causing the balance problems. Some medications, inner ear disease, alcohol abuse or psychological disorders are a few other potential causes of balance and movement impairments.   

What are the symptoms of balance and movement impairments?

In addition to difficulty with walking, movement and frequent falls, balance and movement impairments can cause a lot of other problems, as well. These include confusion, fatigue, trouble concentrating, nausea, vomiting, motion sickness, visual disturbances and many others.

How can balance and movement impairments effect children?

Balance and movement impairments can be particularly challenging among children. That’s because they are often difficult to identify, and the child may not be able to describe what is happening to them. In addition, early identification is important to get children the care they need and prevent complications that occur as the child continues to grow and develop.

What are balance and movement impairment treatments?

Treatment for balance and movement impairments starts with identification of contributing factors. This may involve a combination of medication, use of ambulatory aids, adaptation exercises, gaze stabilization exercises, habituation exercises, and balance, strength and conditioning exercises. Multiple health care professionals can help address the issues and help a child overcome these challenges.

Reviewed by: Lauren Butler, PT, DPT, SCS

This page was last updated on: October 15, 2019 10:30 AM

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