Vertigo is a common sensation of spinning dizziness. A person may feel as though the room or surrounding environment is spinning in circles around them. It can make you feel dizzy and off-balance. Symptoms can last a few minutes, or they can persist for hours.
It can occur during pregnancy or as a symptom of an ear infection.
While both dizziness and vertigo are considered balance problems, the two symptoms are different. Dizziness is an overall feeling of being unbalanced. With vertigo, you have a sensation that you’re moving or that your surroundings are spinning.
There are two main types of vertigo –
• Peripheral vertigo
This happens when there’s a problem with the inner ear.
• Central vertigo
This occurs when there’s an issue with the brain. Causes can include infection, brain tumors, traumatic brain injury or stroke.
Vertigo is a symptom, but it can also lead to or occur alongside other symptoms. These may include –
• balance problems
• a sense of motion sickness
• nausea and vomiting
• ringing in the ear, called tinnitus
• a feeling of fullness in the ear
• nystagmus, where the eyes move uncontrollably, usually from side to side
Vertigo is often caused by an inner ear problem. Some of the most common causes include –
• Benign paroxysmal positional vertigo(BPPV)
BPPVoccurs when tiny calcium particles (canaliths) are dislodged from their normal location and collect in the inner ear.
• Meniere’s disease.
This is an inner ear disorder thought to be caused by a buildup of fluid and changing pressure in the ear. It can cause episodes of vertigo along with ringing in the ears (tinnitus) and hearing loss.
• Vestibular neuritis or labyrinthitis.
The infection causes inflammation in the inner ear around nerves that are important for helping the body sense balance.
Vertigo can also occur with:
• migraine headaches
• a head injury
• ear surgery
• perilymphatic fistula, when inner ear fluid leaks into the middle ear due to a tear in either of the two membranes between the middle ear and inner ear
• shingles in or around the ear — herpes zoster oticus
• otosclerosis, when a middle ear bone growth problem leads to hearing loss
• ataxia, which is the result of muscle weakness
• a stroke or a transient ischemic attack
• cerebellar or brain stem disease
• acoustic neuroma, which is a benign growth that develops on the vestibulocochlear nerve near the inner ear
• multiple sclerosis
Risk Factors –
• Being a woman and being older than 50 can up your risk of having a vertigo episode.
• A family member with vertigo, or other factors, such as having a head injury, can also increase your chances of developing symptoms.
Vertigo can take a toll on your daily life. If your episodes are frequent or severe, you may not be able to work, drive, or perform other tasks.
Typically, people with persistent vertigo are advised not to drive or operate machinery because these activities can pose dangers to themselves and others.
Vertigo can also lead to falls, which may cause injuries. Falling is particularly a concern for older people, who are more prone to bone fractures and other complications.
First, your doctor will try to find out if you have “true vertigo” by asking about your specific complaints. Then, the focus will be on diagnosing a cause.
Imaging tests, such as a
• computerized tomography (CT) scan
• magnetic resonance imaging (MRI)
can be used to let doctors see what’s going on inside your body.
In some cases, hearing tests, vision tests, blood work, and even allergy tests are also used.
Treatment for vertigo depends on what’s causing it. In many cases, vertigo goes away without any treatment.
• Vestibular rehabilitation.
This is a type of physical therapy aimed at helping strengthen the vestibular system. Vestibular rehab may be recommended if you have recurrent bouts of vertigo. It helps train your other senses to compensate for vertigo.
• Canalith repositioning maneuvers.
The movements are done to move the calcium deposits out of the canal into an inner ear chamber so they can be absorbed by the body. You will likely have vertigo symptoms during the procedure as the canaliths move.
In some cases, medication may be given to relieve symptoms such as nausea or motion sickness associated with vertigo.
In a few cases, surgery may be needed for vertigo.
If vertigo is caused by a more serious underlying problem, such as a tumor or injury to the brain or neck, treatment for those problems may help to alleviate the vertigo.
Ayurvedic Treatment –
The Vertigo Ayurveda treatment focuses on maintaining and improving the brain health. This treatment includes the following –
• A simple, bland and light diet that is free of spices
• Fresh fruits, green vegetables, citrus fruits, poppy seeds, dates and raisins
• Daily relaxation techniques like meditation and yoga
• Avoid the pillow while sleeping to enhance blood circulation to the brain
• Avoiding junk foods, excess salts, consumption of tobacco, narcotic drugs and alcoholic beverages
The following herbs are taken to strengthen and improve the brain related functions –
It improves the memory, enhances the blood flow to the brain and it’s an effective tonic for brain health.
It’s a blackish brown hard paste-like substance that’s extracted from rocks. It’s a rich source of vitamins, Phyto-nutrients, Fulvic acid and minerals in their ionic form. Shilajit helps in maintaining and promoting healthy digestion, metabolism, reproductive and urinary system.
It’s a brain tonic for rejuvenating properties. It improves the brain health and memory.
• Other herbs that can be taken are Ashwagandha, Amalaki, Haritaki, Yavasa, Vacha, Sariva, Giloy and Pitpapda.
Proper sleep and Shirodhara (a part of Panchakarma therapy) are suggested for a speedy improvement. Ayurveda not only provides a natural method of treating Vertigo, but the practices employed in the treatment promote general good health.
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