Dealing With The “Spins”? Physical Therapy May Provide Relief
Did You Know Physical Therapy Could Help With Those “Spins”?
We’ve all had the sensation of being dizzy - as if you can’t focus, can’t see straight, can’t stand upright without swaying or falling. You may even experience “tunnel vision,” where your peripheral vision goes dark for a few seconds.
Many of us recognize this sensation to be the same one we feel when we stand up too fast. It can certainly be very disorienting, however, it typically passes in a second or two!
However, does your dizziness do more than just disorient you for a few seconds after standing up? Is it impacting your daily life?
Dizziness is common and can have many causes. Vertigo, however, is a little different. While dizziness is typically synonymous with “lightheadedness,” which creates the illusion of being unsteady, vertigo is typically a response to a physiological factor that is causing a literal imbalance in your body.
Those experiencing vertigo have reported feeling as if they are “rocking” or “spinning,” even when they are sitting still.
Causes of dizziness/vertigo
A few of the many factors that can lead to dizziness include lack of sleep, poor nutrition, overexertion, or a physical ailment, such as a head cold or the flu.
Dizziness can also occur from something as simple as standing up too quickly after an extended period of rest. Some accompanying symptoms to dizziness may include:
- Loss of balance
- Feeling woozy or faint
- Momentarily impaired vision (i.e. tunnel vision)
- Lightheadedness or heavy-headedness
The best way to know the cause of your dizziness is to consult with a specialist. There could be another underlying cause you are not aware of.
You may also look out for these other specific symptoms as well in regards to vertigo:
- Abnormal eye movements
- Arm or leg weakness
- Difficulty seeing or speaking
- Inability to focus or remain alert
- Nausea or vomiting
- Double vision
How do I know if I’m experiencing dizziness or vertigo?
Vertigo is most commonly caused by an imbalance in the inner ear, also known as the “vestibular system.”
Your vestibular system helps you maintain your balance and center of gravity by sending messages to your brain regarding your movement. When this is impaired, the necessary messages become blocked from your brain, and your movement becomes affected.
Those who experience vertigo may feel as if the world is spinning around them, they can’t focus their vision for prolonged periods of time, or they can’t stand/move properly without feeling like they are going to topple over. This can be very scary and frustrating to deal with, as it interferes with a person’s routine and lifestyle.
Some common causes of vertigo include:
Migraines can impact your vestibular system, thus causing episodes of vertigo which may be coupled with a sensitivity to light or sound. Vision may also be impaired
Benign paroxysmal positional vertigo (BPPV)
This is the most common cause of vertigo. It occurs when the tiny calcium crystals located in your ears break apart and move around to different parts of the ear, where they are not supposed to be. This can cause sudden spinning sensations (vertigo) and inner-ear discomfort.
A stroke affects movement in your whole body. If you recently suffered a stroke, you may experience waves of vertigo that may linger for extended periods of time.
This occurs when fluid builds up in your ear(s). This typically includes “ringing” in your ear and sudden waves of intense dizziness that may last for hours. You may also experience momentary hearing losses.
This is an inner-ear infection that can cause vertigo.
How can physical therapy provide relief for dizziness and vertigo?
Both dizziness and vertigo can hinder your daily life, limiting your ability to perform even the simplest of tasks. Thankfully,, no matter what the cause of your imbalance may be, physical therapy for dizziness and vertigo can help.
Southern Physical & Aquatic Therapy is very successful at diagnosing and treating both dizziness and vertigo with vestibular rehabilitation in Pontotoc. Vestibular rehabilitation includes treatments such as the Epley maneuver and Cawthorne head exercises.
The Epley maneuver allows for canalith repositioning, in order to move the broken calcium crystals in patients experiencing BPPV. Cawthorne head exercises focus on decreasing nerve sensitivity and reducing the effects of vertigo.
Are you ready to get back on your feet today?
At Southern Physical & Aquatic Therapy, our advanced methods and diagnostic tools have earned us a reputation as being one of the most successful Pontotoc physical therapy practices for treating dizziness and vertigo.
If you are experiencing either of these conditions, click here to request an appointment today. We will help you get back on your feet as quickly as possible.