Vertigo is a false sensation of movement. Many patients describe a feeling like the room is spinning, tilting, or swaying. As a result, most people find that it is difficult to carry out normal daily activities during an attack. It can even lead to increased fall risk when episodes are severe and strike suddenly.
Many doctors offer prescription medications for people who suffer from vertigo on a chronic basis. But is this always the best form of care? We’re going to look at 9 medications that doctors often prescribe to relieve vertigo. Then we will consider a natural means of fighting vertigo that is bringing hope to many patients who don’t want to deal with the side effects of medications.
The 9 common vertigo medications, in no particular order, are:
#1 Antivert (meclizine HCI)
This is a prescription strength antihistamine. It should treat vertigo, motion sickness, and nausea. The idea is that drying out the inner ear will stop vertigo. Unfortunately, the list of common side effects for this drug includes blurry vision, dizziness, headache, and vomiting. Other common side effects include dry mouth and constipation. Drowsiness and tiredness may also make it just as difficult to carry out a normal daily routine.
#2 Transderm Scop (transdermal scopolamine)
This is a patch for patients with motion sickness or illness due to anesthesia. It reduces nausea and vomiting by reducing muscle spasms. The side effects of this drug also include dizziness, dry mouth, and drowsiness. Other common side effects are itchy skin and eyes, a feeling of restlessness, and memory problems.
#3 Promethazine Hydrochloride
This is an anti-nausea and vomiting drug. It is used commonly along with anesthesia, but can also be prescribed for some allergic reactions and to sedate patients before a procedure. The extremely long list of side effects includes everything from the drugs noted above along with some more extreme side effects such as hallucinations, tremors, blood pressure changes, jaundice, asthma, and sensitivity to sunlight.
#4 Reglan (metoclopramide)
This is a dopamine antagonist for nausea and vomiting. Again, the list of side effects is lengthy and can cause many of the symptoms it should relieve in the first place such as nausea and vomiting. Other common side effects include frequent urination, diarrhea, and insomnia. Rare but dangerous side effects include muscle stiffness, depression, and difficulty breathing.
#5 Zofran (ondansetron)
This medication is an antiemetic that can relieve nausea and vomiting. Patients on chemo are often the users. Side effects include dizziness, lightheadedness, weakness, tiredness, constipation or diarrhea, blurred vision, muscle spasms, headaches, and more.
#6 Valium (diazepam)
This is a benzodiazepine that primarily treats anxiety disorders, seizures, and the symptoms of alcohol withdrawal. Vertigo is actually a common side effect of this drug. There are many possible side effects of this and other benzodiazepines, but a few of them include balance problems, memory problems, slurred speech, and loss of sex drive.
#7 Ativan (lorazepam)
This is yet another benzodiazepine with similar uses and side effects as valium. It is important to note that long-term use of benzodiazepines can lead to addiction. Ativan is advisable for pregnant women.
#8 Klonopin (clonazepam)
Yet another benzodiazepine. This drug is primarily for anxiety disorders and seizures. Side effects once again include everything from dizziness to cognitive issues and depression. Stopping this drug abruptly after long-term use can have severe side effects such as seizures, vomiting, tremors, muscle cramps, and sweating.
This is a corticosteroid that should suppress the immune system and thereby reduce inflammation in the body. It is used to treat everything from allergies to breathing disorders. As a result, it may help to relieve a condition that is causing vertigo. However, there are many side effects that include slowed ability to heal wounds, insomnia, mood swings, changes in where body fat is stored, and (you guessed it) vertigo.
Finding Natural Vertigo Relief Without the Side Effects
At this point you are probably tired of hearing about side effects and so are we, so let’s talk about a natural way to get vertigo relief without any side effects. We’re talking about upper cervical chiropractic care. This is a niche in the chiropractic field that is getting real results as has been seen in hundreds of patients in case studies.
Upper cervical chiropractic involves gentle adjustments of the C1 and C2 vertebrae after precise measurements are taken using diagnostic imaging. Correcting such a misalignment can lead to pressure being removed from the brainstem and spinal cord as well as improved blood flow and cerebrospinal fluid flow. Since these factors, as well as Eustachian tube function, can play a role in vertigo, correcting this misalignment has reduced the severity and frequency of vertigo for many. Some even find complete relief from chronic vertigo.
To learn more about how upper cervical chiropractic care may benefit you, especially if you have a history of head and/or neck trauma, contact a practice in your local vicinity. A no-obligation consult may be your first step down the path of finding drug-free relief from vertigo and other symptoms.