Pure Physio Blog

What is Vertigo and How Can Physiotherapy Help?

Published on
25 Mar 2022

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Written by
Xiao Hui Teo
Physiotherapist

 Call us on: (03) 9975 4133

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Have you ever felt like the room is spinning around you? Chances are you may have vertigo.

Vertigo is a sensation of you, or the room you are in, is in a constant motion which is commonly felt like a spinning sensation. Vertigo itself is not a disease, it is one of many symptoms of different conditions related to our vestibular system. Vertigo can happen spontaneously, with age or after a knock to the head/trauma.

Our body relies on 3 different systems to remain balanced:

  • Visual system (Eyes)
  • Vestibular system (Ears)
  • Proprioception

The vestibular system which is part of your inner ear has small particles called otoliths that move around with your head positions. Combined with the information from your visual system and proprioception, it gives you a sense of where you are in space. In the cases of BPPV or Benign Paroxymal Positional Vertigo, these particles detach and fall into the wrong area of your inner ear causing the brain to receive mixed messages when you change positions, which in turns results in  the sense of spinning or feeling off-balance. This is often most obvious when you tilt your head, rolling over in bed or while you are getting out of bed.

Other symptoms such as nauseous, dizziness, ringing in the ear or headache can occur simultaneously as well when our vestibular system is disrupted.

Can Physiotherapy help?

The answer is yes. Most often vertigo involving the inner ears are treatable. If you experience the above symptoms, the easiest way to diagnose and treat your problems is to book an appointment with a physiotherapist who is trained in vestibular rehabilitation. We will then conduct a thorough assessment to determine the cause of your vertigo and specific manoeuvres can be done to reposition the ear particles if it is due to BPPV. We are also trained to rule out any other causes and refer on for further investigation if needed.

About the Author

Xiao Hui Teo — Physiotherapist

My passion for helping others to function at their best, whether that be an athlete returning to the sporting field or the elderly maintaining independence, is what motivates me to practise physiotherapy. Xiao Hui is fluent in Mandarin.

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