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Is Your Balance Off? When to Seek Medical Advice

By Claudine Aherne November 09, 2023 Health and Fitness

Have you noticed changes in your balance recently? Are you wondering whether these changes are normal or a sign of something that should be investigated?

Have you considered seeing your doctor but worried you might be wasting their time?

We often hear from people who have concerns about their balance but aren’t sure whether these warrant a visit to the doctor.

In this article, I will tell you the important signs that it’s time to consult a medical professional about your balance. You’ll find out why many people don’t visit their doctor (so you don’t make the same mistakes). I’ll share some inspiring personal stories of balance reclaimed.

Subtle Shifts: When Balance Begins to Falter

When things gradually develop over time, it’s easy to get used to them. We don’t notice how much things have changed, or how much they’re affecting us.

I’ve talked to so many people who have started taking their balance issues as a given.

Ask yourself how often you’ve noticed your balance over the last few weeks or months. Think back a few years and it’s likely you rarely thought about your balance. This can help to demonstrate the changes that have developed over time.

If you’ve got used to having balance difficulties, now’s the time to become aware of this and see if there’s anything you can do to address these.

Signs It’s Time to See a Medical Professional

If you experience any of the following, I suggest you consult your doctor:

  • Sensations of light-headedness, blurred vision or muscular weakness,
  • Feeling that you might faint or do faint,
  • Have new or more pronounced sensations of dizziness,
  • Have recently started feeling unsteady when walking or going up and down stairs,
  • Find yourself avoiding activities due to balance concerns or fear of falling,
  • Have had more than one trip or fall where you ended up on the ground.

This is not an exhaustive list; please trust your instincts. If you feel something isn’t quite right, or that you’d like to discuss it with someone, book that appointment.

Your Doctor’s Door Is Open

Often, people think their doctor will be too busy, that their concerns are not serious enough (they don’t want to waste the doctor’s time) or that their issues are just to be expected as they get older.

Yes, I’m sure your doctor is busy, but they want to help you maintain your quality of life, and they definitely want to help you avoid trips and falls so you won’t be wasting their time.

Assuming that our problems are just due to age can mean we miss treatable conditions – so, if you would have gone to see your doctor about this concern 30 years ago, you should go now.

Post-Fall Protocol: The Importance of Medical Attention

It’s always advisable to let your doctor know if you have a trip or fall where you end up on the ground.

If you have bruising or pain after a fall, visit your doctor to get your injuries checked over.

Even if you feel physically fine (we know that falling can be very upsetting), let someone know. It’s important for your doctor to know if you’ve had a trip or fall. They may want to investigate and could help prevent future incidents.

Balance Restored: Inspiring Journeys Back to Stability

Our community love to share their back to balance stories. Here are some of them to help inspire you.

Margaret, age 71, took a while to visit her doctor about her balance. “I was tired of being a benchwarmer at the park while my grandkids played. After a consultation with my doctor, I was relieved to learn that my balance issues weren’t irreversible. With a combination of medical treatment for my inner ear and balance exercises, I’ve not only regained my stability but also the thrill of being in the midst of the action with my grandkids. Now, I’m the one leading the games, and their giggles make every effort worth it.”

Carlos, 68, was struggling in his garden due to balance difficulties. “My garden was my retreat until balance problems began to shake my confidence. I sought help from my healthcare provider, who identified a vitamin deficiency. With the right supplements and balance exercises, I’ve reclaimed my stability. Now, I’m back to my flowers, steadier than ever, proving that with the right help, you can bloom again in your garden.”

A missed ballet recital was the push Eleanor, 74, needed to consult her doctor. “Avoiding the cultural life I loved due to balance fears felt like losing a part of myself. It took missing my granddaughter’s ballet to seek medical advice. My doctor’s guidance, along with a regimen of balance exercises, has been transformative. I’m more confident out and about, tackling the subway and museum staircases with ease. It has reawakened my passion for culture, and I’m grateful for every step.”

Balance is key to an active, fulfilling and connected life. We need good balance to make the most of our lives, whether that involves grandchildren, travel, hiking or cultural pursuits.

Whatever matters to you, and however your balance issues are affecting you, if you have concerns, you should consult your doctor.

Taking the First Step: Start Improving Your Balance Today

One of the best ways to improve your balance is with regular strength and balance exercises. Just a few minutes of exercise most days can help you maintain or improve your balance. You can improve your balance at any age with the right exercise plan, advice and support.

If you’d like help improving your balance, you’ll love our free Balance Blueprint. This comprehensive resource includes tips, advice, and guidance to get started with a balance training programme from the experts at Vida Wellness.

Let’s Have a Conversation:

Have you experienced any of the symptoms above? Have you noticed balance issues creeping up on you over time? Have you consulted your doctor about your balance? Join the conversation below!

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Ciara Roots

Thanks for the link in the article! I went to the website and found LOTS of great videos, all free! This is a wonderful resource!


My pleasure, Ciara! So pleased you found it all helpful – that’s our goal :) I appreciate you sharing with others too…
Take care,

The Author

Over the last 16 years, Claudine has helped hundreds of people to improve their balance, feel stronger and move more easily. That's why her in-person classes and online programmes have been featured globally, including on BBC Radio 4. Members of her online exercise studio enjoy an extensive library of easy-to-follow videos, as well as advice and support. Try some taster videos from the Vida Wellness Studio.

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