4 effective home remedies for vertigo

How to Manage Vertigo at Home

Do you ever experience a kind of dizziness where it feels like the room is spinning, causing you to feel like you’re unsteady or unbalanced? That may be vertigo and it’s more than just feeling light-headed; it can actually affect your daily life. But with the right knowledge and the help of your health professional, vertigo can be managed at home.

What is vertigo?

Vertigo is a common symptom or sensation that’s precisely described as “an illusion of motion”. Patients describe their experiences with vertigo as feeling like they’re moving or spinning when they’re not, or feeling like their surroundings are moving when they aren’t. Aside from the illusion of motion, vertigo also refers to the sensation of losing your balance, which may be chronic or intermittent.

There are many causes behind vertigo but three of the most common include cold viruses, head trauma, and Meniere’s disease. These three causes have one common factor: they are all conditions that affect the inner ear. The inner ear is responsible for our balance, as well as our sense of position in space. If this is not functioning properly, we lose our sense of balance and may suffer symptoms like vertigo, and even nausea or vomiting.

Vertigo is common among older adults but it can affect anyone at any age. It’s rare but not impossible for children to experience it but it becomes more common in the early 20s. The consequences of vertigo, however, become more substantial with age, especially with the elderly who lose their balance which can then lead to major fractures.

Common symptoms of vertigo may include:

  • Dizziness
  • Feeling like you’re moving or spinning
  • Balance problems
  • Problems focusing the eyes
  • Hearing loss in one ear
  • Ringing in the ears
  • Sweating
  • Nausea or vomiting

This may differ from one person to another.

How to manage vertigo at home

If you experience vertigo at home, there are several treatment methods you can try to manage it:

1. Epley maneuver

This repositioning maneuver is often the go-to strategy for people who experience vertigo. Also called the Canalith repositioning maneuver, you can do it at home following these steps:

  • Sit upright on a flat surface with a pillow behind you and your legs outstretched.
  • Turn your head 45 degrees to the right.
  • Keeping your head tilted, quickly recline with your head on the pillow. Stay in this position for 30 seconds.
  • Slowly turn your head to the left a full 90 degrees without lifting your neck.
  • Then with your whole body, turn to the left so that you are completely on your left side.
  • Slowly return to your original position, looking forward and sitting up straight.

You may also have someone guide you through the maneuver. It can be repeated three times in a row, though you may experience dizziness with each movement.

2. Semont-Toupet maneuver

This maneuver is similar to the Epley maneuver but this set of movements require less neck flexibility.

  • Sit upright on a flat surface with a pillow behind you and your legs outstretched.
  • Lie down, turning to your right, then to your left, while looking upward.
  • Quickly sit up and turn to your left side, while keeping your head facing left. (You should be looking down towards the ground.)
  • Slowly return to your original position, looking forward and sitting up straight.

3. Stress management

Some conditions that cause vertigo can be triggered by stress, so developing coping strategies to navigate stressful situations could help lessen episodes of vertigo. A good first step would be to practice meditation and deep-breathing exercises. While it’s nearly impossible to cut out stressors from our lives, simply being aware of what stresses you out may help cut down your vertigo symptoms.

4. Taichi and yoga

These exercises are known to reduce stress at the same time increase balance and flexibility. You can start out with simple yoga poses like Child’s Pose and Corpse Pose, though you have to be cautious about movements that involve bending forward suddenly, which could temporarily worsen your vertigo symptoms.

Simple wellness measures like keeping a healthy diet, staying hydrated, and getting enough sleep can also help you lessen vertigo episodes and keep you feeling your best.

If you frequently experience vertigo, it’s important to talk to your health professional to find out the cause. They may be able to diagnose you, or refer you to an ear, nose, and throat specialist for further evaluation.