Vertigo: Causes, Types & Treatment Options

Vertigo can be associated with migraines, which are a type of headache. This is because some people who have migraines also experience vertigo as a symptom. The reason for this is not entirely clear, but it may have to do with the way that migraines affect the inner ear or the parts of the brain that control balance. About 30 to 50 percent of Americans who have migraines also experience vertigo at some point.

Illustration of a Caucasian woman with dark brown hair and a white shirt feeling dizzy/vertigo.

Do you experience vertigo often with severe headaches? If so, the vertigo may just be a symptom of migraine. Find more information about migraine here: Migraine: Possible Causes, Symptoms & Treatment Options

Symptoms of Vertigo

The most common and obvious symptom of vertigo is, of course, dizziness. The dizziness increases with head movements. The big question is: how do you distinguish this dizziness from “normal” dizziness? Well, most patients suffering from this condition describe it as a “spinning sensation with the room or objects around them seeming to move.” Other symptoms, include:

  • Nausea & vomiting
  • Headaches
  • Increased sweating
  • Tinnitus
  • Hearing loss
  • Involuntary eye movements
  • Loss of balance

Diagnosis & Treatment Options

Fortunately, vertigo often goes away on its own. You should contact your professional healthcare provider as soon as possible if this isn’t the case. The sooner you get the right diagnosis, the sooner a suitable treatment plan can be made. Before your healthcare provider can make a diagnosis, they first have to examine you. Possible exams are:

  • Fukuda-Unterberger’s test – to see if you have inner ear problems.
  • Romberg’s test – to see if you have central nervous system problems.
  • Head impulse test – to see how the inner ear balance system is working.
  • Vestibular test battery – to see if you have inner ear problems.
  • Eye movement test – to see if your eyes are moving in an unusual way.
  • MRI or CT scan – to get a better look at your brain and inner ear.

When treatment is necessary – because the symptoms won’t disappear – there are a few options you can try. The treatment your healthcare provider recommends will depend on what is causing your vertigo, and what is most likely to work for you. Treatment options include:

  • Canalith repositioning maneuvers – for BPPV, your doctor might recommend exercises to move the crystals in your inner ear back into place.
  • Medications – when the condition is caused by an infection or inflammation, your doctor may prescribe medication to help.
  • Vestibular rehabilitation therapy – involves exercises to help your brain and body adjust to the dizziness and improve balance.
  • Surgery – for more severe cases or if other treatments don’t work, your doctor may recommend surgery to correct problems in the inner ear or brain.

I cannot say this often enough: vertigo should disappear on its own. If this isn’t the case; go contact your healthcare provider and make sure it’s not another medical condition. Your healthcare provider will look at you, examine your symptoms, set the right diagnosis, and start an effective treatment plan. This is why it’s important to do an extensive online research first. We are here to help you, so start your search here:

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