Vertigo cases are divided into two categories. The far more common is peripheral vertigo in which the occurrence is related to the functioning of the vestibular system located in the inner ear. Central vertigo is less often diagnosed and is still a bit controversial. Central vertigo refers to cases that find their genesis in the central nervous system (CNS).
We will answer these questions and more in our article.
It is tough to nail down its specific definition, but as succinctly as possible, it is a false sensation of movement. How might this false sensation of movement manifest itself? Many describe the room as spinning. Or a person may feel like he or she is spinning even while standing still, sitting, or lying down. The room may also seem to tilt or sway as though one is rocking, floating, or falling. As a result of this disorienting sensation, many (especially older ones) attribute falls to sudden bouts of vertigo.
As noted above, this may sometimes be due to a problem in the central nervous system rather than in the ear itself. How can a person tell the difference? Here are 4 things to consider.
Some patients have episodes that only last for mere seconds at a time. Other patients constantly suffer feelings of motion. For example, there was a recent article in the news about a person who claims an amusement park ride has left her with permanent vertigo. For most people, episodes last for 20-30 minutes and a few hours at the most.
Charting how long your attacks last and how often they occur may assist a medical professional in determining if vertigo is central or peripheral in nature.
Some vertigo attacks seem to come out of nowhere. At other times, a person may only experience vertigo when subjected to certain conditions. Some common vertigo triggers include:
Knowing what causes the onset of a vertigo attack is another vital piece of information in determining the underlying cause.
Sometimes vertigo may occur all by itself. However, it may be linked with a number of other symptoms. Is vertigo accompanied by lightheadedness, nausea and vomiting, falls, heart palpitations, headaches, asymmetric muscle weakness, difficulty swallowing, double vision, sweating, or changes in speech patterns? These other symptoms may indicate whether a central or peripheral lesion is causing vertigo.
Some cases of vertigo are accompanied by symptoms that affect the hearing. For example, a person may suffer from partial hearing loss in one or both ears. Is the hearing loss progressive or sudden? Does the ability to hear vary? Is there a feeling of fullness in one or both ears? Is vertigo accompanied by tinnitus, a ringing in the ears? These additional hearing related symptoms may indicate whether vertigo is peripheral or central.
There are potential problems in the central nervous system that vertigo can come from. These include, but are not limited to:
There are few medications that have any effect on vertigo, and they all come with unwanted side effects. As a result, most people want to try to find natural relief before starting on a regimen of pills they may have to take for the rest of their life. One form of care that has helped many is upper cervical chiropractic. What does the top bone in the spine (atlas or C1) have to do with vertigo?
The atlas protects the area when the brainstem meets the spinal cord. Even the slightest misalignment may put pressure on the brainstem and lead to messages regarding balance and spatial orientation being affected. Also, a misalignment in the upper cervical spine can affect blood flow to the brain. This too can affect processing of information from the body’s sensory inputs dealing with location.
Upper cervical chiropractors use diagnostic imaging to take precise measurements of atlas misalignments. Then a custom adjustment is applied gently to each patient. This can correct the underlying problems being caused by the misalignment. In case studies, this has led to complete resolution of vertigo for up to 80% of participants.
To learn more, contact an upper cervical chiropractic practice in your area. If you are suffering from vertigo, especially if you have a history of head or neck trauma, you may have just found the natural form of relief you’ve been searching for.
The content and materials provided in this web site are for informational and educational purposes only and are not intended to supplement or comprise a medical diagnosis or other professional opinion, or to be used in lieu of a consultation with a physician or competent health care professional for medical diagnosis and/or treatment. All content and materials including research papers, case studies and testimonials summarizing patients' responses to care are intended for educational purposes only and do not imply a guarantee of benefit. Individual results may vary, depending upon several factors including age of the patient, severity of the condition, severity of the spinal injury, and duration of time the condition has been present.