Can a chiropractor help with vertigo? For someone who is trying to break away from traditional vertigo treatment, including medications and surgeries, this may be a way to find some natural relief. Before you go out and find a chiropractor for vertigo, let’s discuss a definition of what vertigo is, look at some associated symptoms, and examine the causes of this condition. Then we will be in a better position to explain the specific type of chiropractic care that may be the most successful for you.
A Definition of Vertigo and the Associated Symptoms
The Merck Manual (that book your doctor goes and looks in when he can’t figure out what you have), defines vertigo as a false sensation of moving or spinning. That’s it – that’s the entire definition. People get confused when they look vertigo up in a dictionary and see things like loss of balance or dizziness. These are all different symptoms as far as your doctor is concerned. Vertigo is just the sensation that either you or the things around you are moving. While it very often feels like spinning, it can also manifest as tilting, swaying, or any other type of movement.
Because vertigo is just a symptom and not a condition on its own, there are usually other symptoms that occur along with vertigo. These can help you identify the underlying cause and may even be of benefit in determining the answer to the question, “Can a chiropractor help with vertigo?” in your case. What are some of the symptoms that are associated with vertigo?
The false sensation of moving can make you feel sick to your stomach or even cause you to throw up if it gets really bad or lasts a long time.
Vertigo and headaches often go hand in hand, especially when the underlying cause of vertigo is migraines. This condition is referred to as vestibular migraines and may comprise up to 40% of migraine patients.
This involves a rhythmic movement of the eyes that can be caused by several conditions, particularly vestibular disorders. This can help a physician to determine whether your vertigo is related to your vestibular system (peripheral vertigo) or central nervous system (central vertigo). The oculomotor nuclei and vestibular system are interconnected, so nystagmus indicates the source of vertigo is peripheral.
Hearing loss can occur when there is an excess of fluid in the inner ear. This can also result in vertigo, so it makes sense that the two symptoms often present together.
This refers to a ringing, buzzing, or another sound occurring in the ear. It is often associated with both hearing loss and vertigo.
Heavy sweating may occur alongside vertigo.
This is just a short list of some of the symptoms you may experience, depending on the underlying cause of your vertigo. Let’s look at a few of those causes now.
Common Vertigo Conditions
Here are a few of the most common underlying conditions that have vertigo as a symptom:
Positional vertigo is the result of crystals in the inner ear canals becoming dislodged and therefore sending false signals to the brain about balance and spatial orientation. Unfortunately, since this is the only vertigo condition with no other real indicators besides vertigo, some physicians use it as a catchall when they don’t know the underlying cause.
Since 39 million people in the US alone are living with migraines, that fact that as many as 40% of those patients experience vertigo as a symptom makes this one of the most common causes.
It may not be one of the most common conditions, but it is becoming increasingly prevalent. Meniere’s involves a combination of vertigo, hearing loss, and tinnitus. Usually affecting just one ear, Meniere’s also consists of a feeling of fullness or pressure in the affected ear. However, both ears can be affected, especially if the disease is allowed to progress unabated.
Labyrinthitis and vestibular neuronitis
While two separate conditions, these are worth mentioning together because they both occur following a virus such as a head cold or the flu, and they both usually go away within a couple of weeks of the end of the virus. Labyrinthitis is inflammation of the inner ear. Vestibular neuronitis is inflammation of the vestibular nerve. Either condition can cause vertigo.
These are just some of the ways that vertigo can be related to an underlying condition. But how can a chiropractor help with vertigo?
Seeing an Upper Cervical Chiropractor for Vertigo
Vertigo causes relate to either the ear or the central nervous system. So why try to find help from adjustments of the top two bones in the neck? These two bones are in a unique position to impact both the central nervous and vestibular systems. A misaligned atlas, for example, can put pressure on the brainstem, affect blood flow to the head, or even prevent the ears from draining correctly.
Therefore, it just makes sense to see an upper cervical chiropractor for vertigo, especially if you have a history of head or neck trauma that may have caused a misalignment. To learn more, use the search feature on this website to locate a preferred doctor in your area. A no-obligation consultation may be your first step on the path to finding natural help for your vertigo. Some patients have even been helped to break away from vertigo completely.