Vertigo is characterised by symptoms like dizzy spells, nausea, headache, loss of balance, ringing in the ears, blurred vision and unsteady gait. An abnormality in the inner ear is primarily responsible for causing this condition.
The various causes of vertigo are
-Inner ear infection or inflammation.
-BPPV. It stands for Benign Paroxysmal Positional Vertigo and occurs when microscopic calcium crystals get dislodged in the inner ear canals. These canals are responsible for balance.
-Meniere’s Disease brings about a change in the fluid levels and thereby changes the pressure in the inner ear leading to vertigo.
PRACTICAL WAYS TO TREAT VERTIGO
Since vertigo can occur repeatedly, here are some effective tips to help you to cope with this disorder:
1 . Epley manoeuvre
This simple exercise is applicable for those suffering from BPPV and works towards relocating the dislodged calcium crystals. Turn your head 45 degrees to the left and place a pillow on the bed in such a way that the pillow is placed on your shoulders when you lie down. Quickly lie down and face upwards for 30 seconds (wait for vertigo to pass). Now, turn the head halfway to the left for 30 seconds and then swiftly move your body to face the right (look at the floor) for another 30 seconds. Slowly get up and repeat after 15 minutes if needed. This manoeuvre is known to alleviate symptoms in 80% of patients. Reverse the sides for vertigo of right ear.
2 . Balance exercises
-Balance exercises tackle the sense of imbalance experienced in vertigo. Balance yourself with your hands on your sides on a balancing board for as long as possible. Keep a steady posture and try not to sway. Once this is achieved, do the same exercise with your eyes closed to treat vertigo effectively.
3 . Diet and Lifestyle changes
-A stressful lifestyle and lack of sleep can contribute to your symptoms.
-Practising yoga for a few minutes each day has helped patients overcome vertigo.
-An imbalanced diet and binging on junk foods can make one vulnerable to this condition. Try and note if there are any specific foods that bring on or aggravate your vertigo and avoid them in the future.
-Alcohol and other narcotics also mess with the biochemistry of the inner ear and are best avoided.
-Try and identify your triggers of vertigo. Avoid situations which will trigger your vertigo.
-Persons who have high blood pressure and high cholesterol are at a risk of stroke and should treat these conditions that can precipitate attacks of vertigo.
-Stop smoking immediately to reduce chances of stroke and thereby, vertigo.
-Sometimes, just lying down in a quiet and dark room helps relieve vertigo and nausea.
-If you have been diagnosed with BPPV, avoid doing activities that involve suddenly looking upwards e.g. getting up from the bed suddenly, looking at a high shelf. Make slow, deliberate movements to avoid vertigo. Get out of the bed slowly, pausing to sit for a few seconds and then getting up.
4 . Home Remedies
Certain home concoctions have helped treat vertigo.
-Soak 1 tbsp of coriander seeds overnight. Strain them in the morning and consume with 1 tsp. of sugar daily.
-Strawberry, almonds and Poppy seeds (also soaked overnight) mixed with milk make for a tasty cure.
Vertigo can interfere with many daily activities. Use these tips and you can find ample reduction in the frequency of the episodes of vertigo. If vertigo gets too severe for you to do routine activities, consult a neurologist immediately.