Vertigo is the sensation of movement when there is no movement. In particular, it must have a rotational component to it to be diagnosed as such. Vertigo is a symptom, not an actual condition. There are two basic types of vertigo: central and peripheral. In this article, we are going to get a better understanding of what causes peripheral vertigo. Then, we will look at a way to find relief.
Peripheral vertigo is the most common form of vertigo and often has to do with a problem regarding the balance mechanisms of the inner ear. The most common reasons for peripheral vertigo are:
- Labyrinthitis: An inner ear infection leading to inflammation of the labyrinth, a structure deep inside your ear. The labyrinth is a maze of fluid-filled canals that are responsible for hearing and balance. When inflammation occurs here, the signals being sent to the brain are different from the information the brain is receiving from your unaffected ears and eyes. When there are mixed signals, the brain is not sure how to handle them and vertigo is the end result.
Labyrinthitis usually happens because of a cold, the flu, or another virus that has spread to the labyrinth. Rarely, it is caused by a bacterial infection.
Vertigo as a result of labyrinthitis may be accompanied by hearing loss, tinnitus, fever, ear pain, and nausea and vomiting.
- Vestibular Neuronitis: Also called vestibular neuritis, this is a condition of the inner ear that leads to inflammation of the nerve that connects the labyrinth to the brain. In some instances, the labyrinth itself may be inflamed.
The reason for this condition is usually a viral infection, and it may come on suddenly. You may experience unsteadiness, nausea, and vomiting. Hearing problems do not usually accompany vestibular Neuronitis. It can last for a few hours or days but may take as long as six weeks to completely go away.
- Meniere’s disease: A rare condition, it affects the inner ear and causes vertigo, hearing loss, tinnitus, and a feeling of fullness or pressure in the ear.
You may experience sudden attacks of vertigo that last for hours or days and may include nausea and vomiting. The cause remains a mystery, but diet can often help control some of the symptoms. Surgery is rarely necessary.
- BPPV – benign paroxysmal positional vertigo: This is one of the most common causes of vertigo and usually happens with specific movements of the head, such as rolling over in bed or turning the head in a particular direction. With BPPV you will experience short, severe, recurring attacks of vertigo lasting for a few seconds to a few minutes. Nausea is a common symptom and sometimes vomiting. Nystagmus, abnormal eye movements, are also involved in some cases.
Lightheadedness and loss of balance can remain for several minutes or hours after the attack. BPPV is thought to be due to small fragments of debris (crystals) that break off from the lining of the channels of your inner ear. When these crystals move to the fluid-filled canals of the ear, problems ensue. Head movement causes them to be swept along these canals, sending mixed signals to the brain and leading to vertigo.
BPPV usually is seen in people older than 50 years. It may happen for no apparent reason or occur after:
- Ear surgery
- Ear infections
- A head injury
- Staying in bed for a long period of time while recovering from an illness
- Certain medications: Vertigo is sometimes a side effect of some medicines. Be sure to read the patient information leaflet that comes with the medication if you are experiencing vertigo. Do not stop taking the prescribed medicine without contacting your doctor first.
- Head injury: Vertigo can follow a head injury and a doctor should be seen if this happens. Another reason for this may be due to a misalignment in the neck that happened when the head injury occurred. The following information can be helpful if this is the case.
Can Upper Cervical Chiropractic Really Help with Vertigo?
The best way to find the answer to this question is to see the proof. A case study involving 60 vertigo patients revealed something very interesting. All of them were found, upon examination, to have a misalignment in the bones of their upper cervical spine. In addition, all of them recalled having some sort of trauma to the head or neck prior to the onset of their vertigo symptoms, including sporting accidents, car accidents, and trips and falls. After receiving upper cervical chiropractic adjustments, all 60 reported seeing improvement in their vertigo. Of these, 48 saw it go away completely.
Another report speaks of a 37-year-old female that complained of neck stiffness and vertigo. After two and a half months of chiropractic care, her symptoms went away.
Both of these reports show positive proof that upper cervical chiropractic care works. Why is this the case? If the top bones of the neck, the C1 and C2 vertebrae, misalign, they can put undue pressure on the brainstem. This causes the brainstem to send improper signals to the brain about the body’s location in its environment. The brain does not know how to distinguish these mixed signals, and this results in vertigo.
Visiting us here at Precision Spine Specialists in Franklin, Tennessee will result in getting a thorough examination to find the exact location of your misalignment, if one exists. We then use a method that is both gentle and precise to realign the neck bones naturally. Our patients are pleased with the results and report back to us they have seen a great improvement in their vertigo and feel better overall.
To schedule a consultation with Dr. Hall or Dr. Chalke call our Franklin office at 615-778-0887 or just click the button below.
if you are outside of the local area you can find an Upper Cervical Doctor near you at www.uppercervicalawareness.com