Around 69 million Americans aged 40 and older have experienced vertigo. Despite how common it is, there is still some mystery and misunderstanding about it. Vertigo is the prime symptom of a vestibular disorder. The vestibular system includes parts of the inner ear and brain that are responsible for processing the information from your senses that control balance and eye movements. Vertigo attacks can range from an infrequent and mild annoyance to a chronic and debilitating condition that disrupts every facet of life. Whether it’s you or a loved one who sufferers with vertigo, educating yourself about what causes it and ways to care for it can only stand to help.
Vertigo is not a disease or a standalone condition. Instead, vertigo is a symptom that may arise due to several underlying health conditions or diseases. Vertigo has two categories based on where it has its origins:
Dizziness is an inexact term that can pertain to various sensations. When you feel dizzy, you might feel disoriented, faint, woozy, or lightheaded. Vertigo, on the other hand, makes you feel as if you’re spinning or that the environment around you is spinning or whirling. Vertigo is the false sensation of movement. People sometimes use it to describe a fear of heights. Vertigo involves other symptoms including nausea, vomiting, hearing changes, and tinnitus. Both dizziness and vertigo can be due to many things, including dehydration, rapid changes in blood pressure, inner ear problems, certain medications, or positional changes.
In general, there are a variety of things that can trigger an episode of vertigo or dizziness:
One of the ways that your body tries to correct for abnormal balance signals is by moving the eyes. When the eyes make involuntary, abnormal eye movements during a vertigo attack, it is nystagmus. When the vestibular system isn’t functioning properly, false signals can be sent to the brain about movement. The eyes will essentially try to compensate for the false spinning sensation by moving in a jerking motion. Different types of vertigo can produce nystagmus with differing patterns, which can be useful in determining the underlying disease.
More research is revealing a connection between an injury to the head or neck and the later onset of vertigo. Vertigo is a known symptom of post-concussion syndrome, which occurs when concussion symptoms persist long after the injury. A blow to the head or neck can also provoke BPPV, vestibular migraines, cervicogenic vertigo, Meniere’s disease, central nervous system dysfunction, tinnitus, and other damage to the inner ear.
More and more vertigo sufferers are finding lasting relief with a niche approach to chiropractic care called upper cervical. Upper cervical care focuses on the alignment of the uppermost vertebra in the spine, the atlas. An atlas misalignment can have a broad range of negative effects when it comes to your body’s ability to function properly. When you consider the fact that the atlas is the most freely movable segment of the spine, it makes sense that it could shift out of alignment as a result of an accident, injury, or wear and tear. While this misalignment may not be problematic at first, over time it can influence the development of vertigo in a few key ways.
Just as an atlas misalignment can reduce your body’s ability to function optimally, once an adjustment is made and time is given to allow the body to heal, normal function can be restored. The benefit of an upper cervical specific adjustment is that it is designed to hold in place for as long as possible, which yields lasting, natural results that many vertigo sufferers have been searching for. Schedule a consultation with an upper cervical chiropractor in your area to learn more about this natural, gentle, and effective way of getting natural relief from vertigo and its associated symptoms.
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.