Most people have experienced the sensation of dizziness at some point in their lives – the sensation that you are moving or spinning, lightheadedness, swaying, and disorientation. Has your dizziness been impacting your daily life?
Dizziness is common and can have many causes. Vertigo is a specific type of dizziness – the sensation that your environment is moving in a way that does not match your position or movement. Assessment by a vestibular physiotherapist can help to identify and treat the cause of your dizziness or vertigo.
At Amped Physiotherapy, our trained vestibular physiotherapist is here to help you reduce your dizziness/vertigo symptoms and return to the activities you love.
Both dizziness and vertigo can hinder your daily life, limiting your ability to perform even the simplest of tasks. Luckily, for most types of vertigo and dizziness, physiotherapy for dizziness and vertigo. At Amped Physiotherapy, our vestibular physiotherapist is trained in diagnosing and treating dizziness & vertigo in Ottawa, ON with vestibular rehabilitation.
Vestibular rehabilitation includes treatments such as the Epley maneuver, Lempert roll, balance, and habituation exercises. The Epley maneuver and Lempert roll allow for canalith repositioning, in order to move the calcium crystals in patients experiencing BPPV. Balance and movement habituation exercises focus on decreasing nerve sensitivity and reducing the effects of 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, your sense of equilibrium and your movement become affected.
You may feel as if the world is spinning around you, you can’t focus your vision for prolonged periods of time, you feel nauseous, or you can’t stand/move properly without feeling like you are going to fall.
Benign paroxysmal positional vertigo (BPPV)
BPPV is the most common cause of vertigo. It occurs when naturally-occurring calcium crystals located in your ears move around to different parts of your inner ear. These crystals disrupt the information that your inner ear provides about your movement. When your inner ear provides you information that does not match what your neck and your eyes are telling you, you can experience sudden spinning sensations (vertigo), nausea, and rapid eye movements (nystagmus).
Approximately 35% of people who experience migraines will experience vertigo or dizziness as a migraine symptom. Migraine-associated vertigo (MAV) or “vestibular migraines” are often associated with the typical migraine symptoms of aura, headache, sound, and light sensitivity. The migraine episode can last minutes to hours and can result in residual dizziness and imbalance after the migraine has passed.
Vestibular neuritis is an inflammation of the vestibular nerve, usually occurring on one side and can be associated with a viral infection. People with vestibular neuritis usually experience a severe episode of nausea, vomiting, and loss of balance – followed by persistent dizziness and mild-moderate loss of balance. Vestibular rehabilitation can help to retrain the vestibular system to accommodate for the loss of information from the affected nerve.
Head and neck injury
Dizziness, balance issues, and vertigo are common symptoms after a head injury or whiplash injury. After these injuries, you can experience a mismatch of information coming from your eyes (visual system) and your inner ear (vestibular system). This mismatch can contribute to many of the persistent “post-concussion” symptoms – frequent headaches, difficulty with concentration, poor depth perception, avoidance of busy environments. Vestibular rehabilitation can help to retrain these systems to reduce the mismatch and reduce the symptoms of post-concussion syndrome or whiplash.
Ménière’s disease is a chronic progressive disorder that occurs due to a fluid build-up in the inner ear(s). This typically includes “ringing” in your ear, ear fullness, vertigo, and variable hearing loss. A “Ménière’s attack” can last hours to days, and attacks usually progress over time.