What Is Vertigo?

Vertigo is one of those dreaded diagnoses most people hope they never have to personally experience in their lifetime. Vertigo is generally described as sensations of dizzy spells, feeling off balance, and/or most commonly reported as “the world around you is spinning”.

Symptoms for vertigo include:

  • dizziness
  • balance problems
  • lightheadedness
  • nausea and vomiting
  • motion sickness
  • tinnitus (ringing in the ears)
  • feeling of fullness in the ears

Just feeling some dizziness is not deemed vertigo unless there is a rotational dizziness as if the room is spinning around you.

What Causes Vertigo?

Vertigo symptoms are triggered by disturbances in the inner ear, which is one of the main centers communicating with the brain and central nervous system to alert your body when it begins to deviate from a vertical position. If this part of your nervous system begins to malfunction or have difficulty communicating to other brain centers, then balance difficulties, dizziness and or nausea/vomiting can occur.

What Can You Do About Vertigo?

Some vertigo symptoms can resolve on their own, but many bouts of vertigo can be extremely debilitating leading to many hours or days in bed due to the significant amount of dizziness. For treatment, your doctor can prescribe medication to calm down the nervous system which helps reduce some of the intense dizziness or resolve pressure in the ears, dependent on what has caused the vertigo. The medication prescribed can benefit in reducing your symptoms, but are most often not a complete fix to the true problem.

Physical Therapists are trained to perform different assessments to determine what is contributing to the cause of the vertigo and can then perform specific postural movements to the head/neck area to help your body return to a more normal state with less dependence on the medication. Upon reduction of dizziness and other vertigo symptoms, vestibular or balance training is tailored to you and your daily life to help regain your independence and stability with all things you like to do during you day. If you are having trouble after a vertigo flare up or are currently experiencing symptoms, stop in to a Freedom Physical Therapy and see one of our therapists trained in vestibular training to assess your symptoms and help you regain more freedom!

Physical Therapist at Freedom Physical Therapy Services
Erin Bafunno graduated with high honors for her two degrees from Marquette University with Bachelor’s Degree in Exercise Physiology and as a Doctor of Physical Therapy in 2014. Erin’s treatment approach involves looking at the whole picture of the patient’s problem to determine the true cause of the patient’s pain and then utilize manual techniques to correct the movement dysfunction.