Vertigo is the sensation that the world around you is rotating and spinning or you may feel that you are moving or spinning when you are actually standing still. Children will sometimes spin around and around in order to make themselves feel dizzy. This is self-induced vertigo and only lasts for a few minutes.
However, vertigo that you experience as an adult is often brought about by an accident or injury to the head or neck and can last for hours or even days before getting better.
How Vertigo Happens
When you hear the sound, it comes in as waves through the inner ear canal and finally reaches the eardrum. At this point, the sound is turned into vibrations and moved through the inner ear by three bones: the incus, the malleus, and the stapes.
From here they move to the cochlea and then come to the vestibular nerve which carries the sound signals to the brain. The inner ear is also made up of semicircular canals that play a large role in balance. They are at right angles to each other and lined with very sensitive cells that keep balance in the body.
The way this is all designed, in conjunction with the sensitivity of the hair cells in the canals, gives instant feedback on your position in your environment. If any of this becomes disrupted for any reason, you can have an episode of vertigo.
Basically, as mentioned above, when you have vertigo you feel as if you are spinning or moving even while you are being still. Moving the head or body, such as rolling over in bed, can make the symptoms worse. Some people also have nausea and vomiting to accompany their vertigo. Nystagmus (twitching or jerking of the eye) is noted in some people. Vertigo is usually harmless unless accompanied by weakness on one side of the body. If this occurs, you should be evaluated for a stroke.
Causes of Vertigo
Many things can be blamed for vertigo. It often depends on whether it is peripheral or central. Central vertigo stems from problems in the brain or spinal cord. Peripheral vertigo is caused by an issue in the inner ear due to inflammation of the small crystals in the ear moving to an area where they shouldn’t be. When these crystals move, this type of vertigo is called benign paroxysmal positional vertigo (BPPV).
Some other reasons for vertigo are:
- Meniere’s disease
- Head or neck trauma
- Multiple sclerosis
- Migraine headaches
- Blood clots
- Complications from diabetes
- Low blood sugar
- Anxiety and panic
- Motion sickness
Case Studies Reveal Hope for Vertigo Victims
Three different case studies all give hope to those suffering from vertigo. Let’s take a look at these and then discuss how you can get similar results.
A 23-year-old female sought out the care of an upper cervical chiropractor 5 months after enduring a trip and fall that led to being diagnosed with a concussion. She had experienced headaches before the accident, but they got worse and were accompanied by vertigo. Radiographs ruled out fractures but found that she had a misalignment in her upper cervical spine. After receiving 1 to 2 months of care for her symptoms, her vertigo went away completely and her headaches were improved as well.
- A 37-year-old female had a history of brachioradial pruritus (a neurogenic itch disorder of the upper extremities). She also experienced neck stiffness and vertigo. Upon examination, it was discovered that she had a misalignment in her cervical spine. She received two and a half months of upper cervical care, resulting in the resolution of all symptoms she presented with when first visiting the chiropractor, including her vertigo.
- Another larger study was conducted involving 139 patients who were diagnosed with Meniere’s disease. Meniere’s has vertigo as one of its main symptoms, along with tinnitus, ear congestion, and hearing loss. All of these patients remembered suffering some type of trauma, similar to whiplash, before the onset of their condition. Each of them had a tailored upper cervical chiropractic adjustment. Out of the 139, all but 3 saw their symptoms, vertigo, in particular, improve in a short amount of time.
The Conclusion About Vertigo
These studies indicate that the problem with vertigo may very likely start with a misalignment in the upper cervical spine. This is something that upper cervical chiropractors have known for a long time. A misalignment of either the C1 (atlas) or C2 (axis) bones often puts pressure or stress on the brainstem.
These bones were designed to protect the brainstem. However, if they become misaligned, the opposite is true. Misalignments can happen easily to this part of the neck because of its mobility. Even a mild blow to the head or a trip and fall, as indicated in the first-mentioned study above, can cause these bones to move out of place.
This results in the brainstem sending improper signals to the brain about where the body is located in its environment. If the brainstem tells the brain the body is moving and it is actually standing still, vertigo can be the end result. So, how is this problem corrected?
We use a similar method to that in the above-mentioned studies here at Atlas Health Australia in North Lakes, Queensland. The technique does not involve popping the neck or cracking the spine. Rather, it is based on scientific measurements and precise movements that help the neck bones to move back into place naturally.
When adjustments are done without force, there is a reduced chance for the bones to move back out of place as soon as you leave the office. This method restores communication between the brain and the body. Many patients report seeing an improvement in or an end to their vertigo.
To schedule, a complimentary consultation call our North Lakes Queensland office at 07-3188-9329