Physical Therapist Questions Motion Sickness

Can PT help with motion sickness?

I have pretty severe motion sensitivity. It seems like all movement makes me a little nauseous. I have heard that physical therapy can help with it. Is this true? How?

6 Answers

Yes, and especially if you go to someone that specializes with "vestibular therapy". The inner ear is key to the body's balance. Knowing how the eyes, inner ear, and spine work together to keep a sense of balance is necessary. Because there are so many moving parts, most people may not be able to isolate what the problem is. If the intensity of nausea is only slight, that is a great indicator that the problem is slight. However, it is still possible to have a slight problem in all three areas. If all movements are symptomatic, this would lean towards a problem being present in two, if not three, of the systems.
Yes it does, but not in all cases .
To whom it may concern,

That is not true if it is true motion sickness. However, if it is BPPV, which is an inner ear issue, yes, this can be treated by a physical therapist within a matter of minutes. This type of vertigo or "room spinning" usually occurs when rolling in bed, sitting up, or lying down.

James Dulkerian, DPT
You would need to be evaluated first to see if you have good rehab potential. If you present with cervicogenic dizziness or benign paroxysmal positional vertigo, physical therapy can help
The type of PT you are looking for would be one that specializes in vestibular rehabilitation. Sometimes dizziness can be caused by problems with the inner ear, cervical spine, or eyes just to name a few. A good vestibular PT should be able to take care of you.
Thank you for such a great question! Physical therapy can help, depending on the causation of the sickness. Some physical therapists specialize in vestibular rehab, which can "retrain" the body if the cause is the inner ear. I would first suggest getting to the root what causes the sickness before embarking on formal PT. Also, there are motion sickness bracelets that are cheap and readily available online if you are interested. Many people have had great success when on a boat or long car rides. Good luck, and keep me posted!

Dena Restaino