Vertigo is a sensation in which a person feels dizzy, as though the room or the world around the person is spinning in circles. Vertigo is often used by people to describe the fear of height, which is incorrect. This condition can happen when a person looks down from a great height, but it mostly refers to the dizziness spells that occur because of issues in the inner ear or brain. It is not an illness but a symptom of an underlying condition. Several conditions can give rise to vertigo.
Types of Vertigo :
There are different types of vertigo, such as:
1. Peripheral Vertigo :
Around 80% of individuals experience this type of vertigo. This condition usually results if there is an issue in the inner ear that controls balance. Tiny organs in the inner ear respond to gravity and the position of a person by sending nerve signals to the brain. This process allows individuals to maintain their balance and posture on standing up.
Any issues in this process can result in vertigo. Some of the common causes are inflammation and BPPV. Other causes include acoustic neuroma and Ménière’s disease.
2. Central Vertigo :
Central vertigo arises due to problems with the central nervous system (CNS). Around 20% of people experience this type of vertigo. The condition usually arises from an issue in a part of the brain stem or cerebellum. Some of the possible causes are vestibular migraine, tumors, and demyelination. Vertigo can also arise due to a problem with the cervical spine.
Symptoms of Vertigo :
A person with vertigo will have a sensation of spinning dizziness or as if their surrounding environment is moving or spinning. Vertigo is a symptom, but it can result in or occur alongside other symptoms as well, including:
- A feeling of fullness in the ear
- Nausea and vomiting
- Balance problems
- Nystagmus, in which the eyes move from side to side uncontrollably
- Tinnitus, when there is a ringing in the ear
Causes of Vertigo :
Different conditions may result in vertigo, which usually involves either an issue with the CNS or an imbalance in the inner ear.
Given below are some of the conditions that can lead to vertigo.
1. Labyrinthitis :
Thi condition usually occurs when an infection in the inner ear labyrinth results in inflammation. Within this area is the vestibulocochlear nerve that sends nerve signals to the brain about sound, head motion, and position of a person. Some of the common symptoms a person with labyrinthitis may experience are dizziness, hearing loss, ear pain, tinnitus, vision changes, and headaches.
2. Vestibular neuritis :
An infection in the vestibular nerve causes vestibular neuritis, which results in inflammation of the nerve. It is similar to labyrinthitis, but it does not cause hearing loss in a person. Along with vertigo, a person with vestibular neuritis may experience blurred vision, nausea, and a sensation of feeling imbalanced.
3. Cholesteatoma :
This non-malignant skin growth occurs in the middle ear due to multiple infections. While it grows behind the eardrum, it can damage the bony structures of the middle ear, resulting in hearing loss and vertigo.
4. Ménière’s Disease :
This condition results in a buildup of fluid in the middle ear, resulting in spells of dizziness along with ringing in the ears and hearing loss. Ménière’s disease is more common in people aged between 40 and 60 years. According to a study by the National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders, at least 615,000 Americans currently have this condition, with doctors diagnosing around 45,500 new cases per year.
The exact cause of this condition is not known, but it may stem from a viral infection, an autoimmune reaction, or blood vessel constriction.
5. Benign Paroxysmal Positional Vertigo (BPPV) :
There are otolith organs in the inner ear containing fluid and particles of calcium carbonate in crystallized form. In BPPV, these crystals become dislocated and fall into the semicircular canals. When these crystals come in contact with the sensory hair cells within the cupula of the semicircular canals, the brain receives inaccurate nerve signals about the position of a person, resulting in vertigo. People usually experience spells of dizziness that lasts less than a minute, accompanied by nausea and other symptoms.
6. Other Factors :
Vertigo can also get triggered because of the following factors:
- Head injuries
- Ear surgery
- Shingles in or around the ear
- Migraine headaches
- Otosclerosis, when a problem in the middle ear bone leads to hearing loss
- Stroke or a transient ischemic attack
- Perilymphatic fistula, when fluid from the inner ear leaks into the middle ear, resulting in a tear in either of the two membranes between the middle ear and inner ear
- Multiple sclerosis (MS)
- Ataxia, which results in muscle weakness
- Cerebellar or brain stem disease
Vertigo Diagnosis :
Your doctor will try to find the underlying cause behind dizziness. They will ask you to undergo a physical examination, note the medical history, and ask you how the dizziness makes you feel.
The doctor may also carry out a few tests such as:
Fukuda-Unterberger’s Test: The doctor will ask you to march on the spot for 30 seconds with your eyes closed. If they rotate to one side, it may indicate a lesion in the inner eye labyrinth, resulting in peripheral vertigo.
Romberg’s Test: The doctor will ask you to stand with your arms by the sides and feet together, along with your eyes closed. If you become unsteady after closing your eyes, this underlying cause could be a CNS problem.
Based on the results of the above-mentioned tests, the doctor may recommend an MRI or a head CT scan to dive deeper into it.
Treatment For Vertigo :
There are a few types of vertigo that resolve on their own, but a person may need medical attention for an underlying condition. A doctor may prescribe antibiotics for a bacterial infection or antiviral drugs for shingles. Medications such as anti-emetics and antihistamines are available that can help relieve nausea and motion sickness.
A person may require surgery if medications are ineffective. Acoustic neuroma and BPPV are the two conditions that may require a person to undergo surgery. Antihistamines are available at your local pharmacy or over the internet.
Treating Ménière’s Disease :
A doctor may prescribe medications for patients with Ménière’s disease, including lorazepam, meclizine, or glycopyrrolate, to help relieve dizziness resulting from this condition.
Other treatment alternatives include:
Avoiding chocolate, caffeine, alcohol, and not smoking
Limiting the consumption of sodium and using diuretic therapy to reduce fluid levels
Having a physician for injecting corticosteroids or antibiotics into the middle ear
Pressure pulse treatment, which includes fitting an ear device
Home Remedies For Getting Relief From Vertigo:
Patients can take several remedies at home to help get relief from vertigo and limit its effects. Remedies that can help reduce the effects of vertigo or dizziness are as follows:
- Sleeping with head raised on more than two pillows
- Squatting rather than bending over to pick something up
- Making changes in the home
- Sitting down as soon as vertigo strikes
- Lying in a quiet, dark room when the feeling of dizziness appears
- Using a walking stick, if necessary
- Avoiding driving or using a ladder
- Turning on lights when waking up at night to help prevent stumbling over
- Taking additional time to perform movements that may trigger dizziness, including turning the head, getting up, or looking up
Patients should ask their doctor before going for any treatment alternatives. They should also seek medical attention immediately if vertigo starts suddenly or gets worse, as they may require treatment for the underlying condition.
Grocare's Vertigo Kit For Getting Relief From Vertigo:
Grocare's Vertigo kit made with the richness of natural herbs, Oronerv® & Acidim® are ayurvedic medicines that work on controlling pH, minimizing free radicals and inflammation, thereby providing relief from vertigo.
Herbs such as Commiphora Mukul and Pluchea Lanceolata are mixed to make Oronerv®, which helps restore and synchronize the neurovascular system in the body. The product results in increased blood flow to the ears, thereby helping the body eliminate harmful toxins that cause inflammation within the ears. In short, it maintains functional harmony in the neurovascular system. The herbs used to formulate this product have anti-inflammatory properties, which can help reduce the pressure in the ears and flag out the symptoms of vertigo.
Acidim® is another useful product in the Vertigo Kit that is market in the form of a tablet (850g). It is produced by a unique combination of 14 potent bio-herbs, amongst which, Cyperus Rotundus and Embellia Ribes help balance the pH naturally throughout the body. The product purifies the impurities present in the body by detoxifying and correcting the pH.
Besides, it is anti-inflammatory and helps eliminate the symptoms of vertigo. One of the ingredients of Acidim®, Embellia Ribes, helps in increasing blood circulation throughout the body, which can help remove harmful free radicals and toxins that occur with inflammation within the ears.
Together, Oronerv® & Acidim® help in eliminating the symptoms of vertigo naturally over time.
Proper Dosage :
Two tablets of Oronerv® should be taken twice a day (post breakfast and dinner), and two tablets of Acidim® should be taken a day thrice (post breakfast, lunch & dinner), respectively. The tablets should be taken for 2-3 months or as prescribed by the doctor. Individuals can see the benefits within a month in the form of symptomatic relief. If taken within the prescribed dosage, Oronerv® & Acidim® do not result in any known side-effects.