Vertigo is a sensation of spinning, rotating or rocking that is felt by an individual when not in motion. Though it can be caused by a wide range of factors, vertigo usually has similar patterns and forms of symptoms which include swaying, being unbalanced, tilting, hearing loss, spinning, nausea, sweating, headache, jerking eye movement, and vomiting.
To provide long-lasting reliefs to patients suffering from vertigo, it is imperative to understand the causes of the condition. The causes of vertigo are:
- Benign paroxysmal positional vertigo (BPPV) – This occurs when the canals of the inner ear become blocked with the calcium particles called canaliths. Notably, the inner ear is responsible for sending signals about balance in gravity to the brain. So, as a result of the blockage by canaliths, the inner ear is unable to send a signal to the brain and balance is lost.
- Meniere’s disease – This disease is associated with the accumulation of fluid in the inner ear to obstruct the flow of signals from the inner ear to the brain.
- Vestibular neuritis – Vestibular neuritis is a viral infection that causes inner ear problems. The problems with the inner ear come as a result of an inflammation.
Other possible causes of vertigo that may be diagnosed before treatments are provided include head trauma, brain disorders, and migraine or headaches.
The best treatment options for vertigo
After the cause of vertigo has been known, there are various treatment methods available. The most effective methods of treating vertigo are:
- Vestibular rehabilitation
Vestibular rehabilitation is based on the use of physical therapy to improve the functioning of the vestibular system. The vestibular system is responsible for sending signals to the brain about the movement of the body and head in relation to gravity to maintain balance; therefore, whenever it has problems, balance is lost and vertigo or any other balance disorders may occur. In this treatment method, the vestibular system is strengthened by improving the performance of other senses so that they can compensate for vertigo. As the other senses compensate, the symptoms of vertigo are significantly relieved.
- Canalith repositioning maneuver
Canalith repositioning maneuver is done through series of movement of the body and head. It is specifically used for treating benign paroxysmal positional vertigo (BPPV) in which the canals of the inner ear of the patient is blocked by calcium particles known as canaliths. This treatment is targeted at removing the calcium particles by moving it from the canal into the chambers of the inner ear. From the inner ear chambers, these calcium particles are then absorbed by the body. Generally known to be effective and risk-free, canalith repositioning maneuver can be provided by physical therapist or medical doctor.
There are also several medications that can be used to relieve the symptoms of vertigo. For patients suffering from inflammation or infections, steroids or antibiotics can be prescribed to cure the infections or reduce swelling. For those having vertigo as a result of Meniere’s disease, it is essential to reduce pressure caused by fluid buildup through the use of water pills which are otherwise known as diuretics.
Surgery is sometimes used as a corrective procedure. In many situations, surgery can be used to facilitate the movement of an obstructing block vessel away from the vestibular nerve. In the case of perilymph fistula, it can also be used to take care of a leak in some portions of the inner ear. When used for Meniere’s disease, it is called shunt surgery and targeted at enhancing the plumbing of the inner ear. However, there are several doubts and controversies over the effectiveness and risks of using surgery for vertigo. Resultantly, caution must be taken when using surgery for treating vertigo.
NeuroEquilibrium is a vertigo specialist clinic which delivers holistic treatment to individuals suffering from vertigo and other balance related disorders.