Vertigo symptoms and treatments

Vertigo is an intense balance disorder that can make living a normal life incredibly difficult. When you suffer from vertigo, you can experience instances of imbalance, dizziness, and nausea just because of a slight head motion. The symptoms of vertigo can turn simple activities, like driving a car, into chaotic and uncomfortable events. There is no cure for vertigo, but a number of vertigo treatment options can improve one’s situation. Let’s dive into this common condition.

Understanding Vertigo

Vertigo can be described as a sensation of imbalance or the feeling of moving/spinning when you’re actually not. It can also feel like things around you are moving when they aren’t. While vertigo may sound similar to motion sickness, MDDS, or lightheadedness, it is actually a very unique condition. Vertigo can be aggravated by mere head movements, while a condition like motion sickness relates to movements outside of our control.

There are actually two main categories of vertigo: peripheral vertigo and central vertigo. Peripheral vertigo is the result of a problem in the inner ear or the vestibular nerve (the nerve of the inner ear that communicates balance information to the brain). Roughly 93% of all vertigo cases are peripheral vertigo, making it the most common form of vertigo.

Central vertigo, on the other hand, is associated with a problem in the brain, more specifically the cerebellum. The symptoms of vertigo may be very different depending on your type of vertigo. Out of these two categories, peripheral vertigo is usually much more severe than central vertigo.

Peripheral Vertigo

The sensations and symptoms of vertigo can take shape through a number of different causes or vertigo conditions. The category of peripheral vertigo can be broken down into a few different vertigo-associated diseases (VAD). These include:

  • Benign Paroxysmal Positional Vertigo (BPPV) - The most common form of peripheral vertigo, BPPV causes short and frequent bouts of vertigo. This condition occurs when tiny pieces of anatomical debris break off from the inner ear canal and float in/stimulate the semicircular canals of the ear.
  • Labyrinthitis/Vestibular Neuritis - This condition is caused by an inner ear infection that directly impacts and inflames your balance control and hearing abilities. It causes a sensation of dizziness or a feeling that you’re moving when you're motionless.
  • Meniere’s Disease - This inner ear disorder causes sudden flashes of vertigo that can last for up to 24 hours. It’s thought to be caused by fluid buildup and changes in pressure. This vertigo condition can also result in other ear problems, like tinnitus and hearing loss.

In rare cases, peripheral vertigo can also be caused by an abnormal bone growth or the erosion of a cyst in the inner ear. For many of these types of peripheral vertigo, people will seek out an immediate vertigo treatment to alleviate their symptoms.

Central Vertigo

There is a reason why central vertigo is less common that peripheral. It’s because central vertigo is caused by an injury to the brain or a brain disease. Central vertigo occurs when the sensory nerve pathways in your brain are disturbed. Specifically, this vertigo category involves a disturbance in either the brainstem or cerebellum. The causes of central vertigo could include stroke, brain tumors, MS, migraines, or head injuries.

When people receive central vertigo treatment, they will also require treatment for the injury or illness that caused this vertigo to occur.

Symptoms of Vertigo

The symptoms of vertigo can range a fair amount from person to person. Those with central vertigo may experience very different symptoms than those with peripheral vertigo. Still, these vertigo-associated diseases share some common symptoms. Symptoms of VADs could include:

  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Headaches
  • Stumbling while walking
  • Excessive sweating
  • Abnormal eye movements
  • Rotational dizziness

Those with vertigo usually describe the condition as a spinning sensation. It may also feel like you are constantly tilting or swaying, being pulled to one direction or feeling unbalanced. Those with peripheral vertigo will often experience ear sensations as well, including ear pain, ringing in the ears, and/or hearing loss.

Treating Vertigo In Denver At McWhorter CNR

The symptoms of vertigo can cause great interference in your daily routines. There are a multitude of vertigo treatment options that can benefit those who suffer from vertigo. Those treatments can depend on your type of VAD. For some cases of peripheral vertigo, antibiotics and prescription medications are the go-to treatment method. This approach can, however, negatively impact your immune system and have other negative side effects. In more extreme cases, surgery may be required to remove part of your inner ear. This costly route should really be your last resort.

At McWhorter CNR, we have developed a thorough understanding of how to best treat vertigo-associated diseases. Our experienced clinicians will use an advanced vertigo treatment method called Balance Concepts. With this cutting-edge treatment, we can help you re-coordinate your balance control through drug-free physical therapy.

In addition to the traditional drug-free treatment route, we also offer a wide variety of cutting-edge treatments, like Neurofeedback or Sensory Integration, that can be easily integrated into your treatment plan. We’ll do our best to ensure you get back to living a happy and healthy life, with less symptoms of vertigo.

If you suffer from episodic instances of vertigo, we can help minimize those symptoms and help you live your life to the fullest. Contact McWhorter CNR today and get the best innovative vertigo treatment available.