Do you suffer from vertigo? Contrary to what most people think, vertigo is not an issue with heights. A fear of heights is actually called ‘acrophobia’. Although you can experience vertigo at a height, that is not the reason it occurs. Vertigo is a symptom, because of which you either feel like you’re spinning, or the room is spinning. You may also feel like the room is off tilt, whirling, or waving.
There are two kinds; subjective and objective. The objective is when you feel as if the room is moving, and subjective is when you feel like you are moving. Vertigo can be caused by many things; usually a condition in the inner ear or with the brain.
Many people think that vertigo is a medical condition in itself when in actual fact it is just a symptom. Some forms of vertigo will go away by themselves, while others will require medical treatment.
It’s always best to visit a doctor to get your vertigo checked over before doing anything about it. Once you’ve had it checked over, you can then take steps to minimizing its effects.
Here are a few ideas:
Get a Diagnosis
Getting a proper diagnosis is essential, so you know exactly what is causing your vertigo. Treatment will depend on the kind of vertigo you have. It may be caused by an inner ear disorder, a head injury, migraines, strokes, or tumors.
It may also be something totally benign. This is why it’s essential you find out what’s causing it.
Sleep With Your Head Propped Up on More Pillows
If you only sleep using one pillow, this could make your vertigo worse. By sleeping with your head propped up on two or more pillows, you stop your inner ear crystals from moving and becoming dislodged as much.
You can also sleep on your back rather than your stomach or side to avoid unnecessary disruption of the ear crystals.
Try Not to Lower Your Head Past Your Shoulders
Lowering your head past your shoulders can also cause your inner ear crystals to become dislodged and float around.
If you must bend to pick something up, do it at the knees rather than at the waist.
Don’t do any exercises that require you to bring your head past your shoulders either!
Try Not to Stretch Your Neck
Stretching your neck forwards, as if you’re reaching for something, can also affect your inner ear crystals.
Try to be more aware of the movements you’re making and avoid doing this with your neck.
Avoid Sudden Movements
Sudden movements can wreak havoc with your inner ear. Unfortunately, this means you should avoid riding roller coasters and taking part in high impact sports.
You can still exercise and enjoy sport, but low impact is usually best. Try jogging, swimming, and walking.
Smoking is a very bad habit for so many reasons, but it can also affect vertigo treatment. If you do smoke, you are minimizing the effectiveness of the treatment you’re receiving for vertigo. For the sake of your vertigo and other problems, you could encounter due to smoking, get the help you need to quit now.
There are many support groups and online forums that could help you. It’ll be hard, but it’ll be worth it.
Try Epley's Maneuver
The Epley’s Maneuver can be performed by a professional physician. It helps to put your ear crystals back in place, helping to minimize the effects of vertigo.
You will be put into a number of different positions, designed to remove these crystals from the sensitive part of your inner ear. The physician can even show you how to do it yourself so you can do it at home next time you feel you need to.
Check out a great guide to Epley Manevuer that we've prepared for you.
Change Your Diet
A few changes in your diet could help to reduce your vertigo symptoms. Try eating less salt, and drink lots of fluids to make sure you’re hydrated.
This is especially important for sufferers of vertigo with Meniere’s disease.
Antibiotics may cure the reason for your vertigo, and it’ll go away as a result. There are many medicines that treat vertigo, but your doctor will prescribe the best one for you.
Read about Meclizine and Dramamine - two antihistamines to help with vertigo and motion sickness.
Chinese medicines, including acupuncture can be a great help when you just can’t seem to get rid of your vertigo symptoms.
Just 3 sessions of acupuncture are thought to be an effective vertigo relief.
Click here for a great article about 12 acupressure points to treat vertigo.
Certain supplements may be able to help in relieving your vertigo symptoms.
For example, Ginkgo Biloba, helps to improve blood circulation to the brain and can result in a decreased feeling of motion. Vitamin D is also thought to be effective. If you keep up a constant supplement taking plan for a few months, then you may find your symptoms improve.
You can see a list of helpful supplements for vertigo in our vertigo diet guide here.
Breathing exercises and meditation
Stress can make the symptoms of vertigo even worse, so if you’re living a hectic life, you need some mind and body medicine. Breathing exercises and meditation, as well as other relaxation techniques, can be effective in relieving your vertigo symptoms.
Guided imagery and hypnosis may also be solutions that you’d like to try.
Alternative therapies are available with a trained osteopath, such as craniosacral therapy. This is a hands-on full body method designed to relieve your symptoms of vertigo and dizziness. It’s gentle, and effective for other symptoms and conditions too.
It can help to release tension in the head and temples, as well as increase the healing power of the whole body. It’s a great treatment for anybody, but if your vertigo was caused by an accident, then this kind of therapy could be perfect for you.
You can check out this source to learn about craniosacral therapy.
If your condition is truly unbearable and above suggestions haven’t worked for you, then you may consider surgery. Surgery can be effective if you suffer from conditions such as BPPV, Meniere’s disease, chronic labyrinthitis, and Vestibular Neuritis. Your doctor will be able to tell you whether surgery is suitable for you.