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10 Home Remedies for Vertigo

Vertigo

Vertigo is a feeling of dizziness that occurs without any accompanying movement. It’s caused by your senses telling your brain that your body is off balance, even though it isn’t. Vertigo is a symptom of an underlying condition, not a diagnosis in itself. It can be a result of several different things.

Some types of vertigo will only happen once, and some types will continue to recur until the underlying condition is found. One of the most common types of vertigo is called benign positional paroxysmal vertigo (BPPV). BPPV is caused by deposits that build up in your inner ear, which navigates your sense of balance. Vestibular neuritis, stroke, head or neck injuries, and Meniere’s disease are all other conditions that can cause vertigo. If you are experiencing vertigo at home, there are several home remedies that you can use to treat it.

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Epley maneuver

Epley maneuver

Also called the “Canalith” repositioning maneuver, the Epley maneuver is the first go-to strategy for many people experiencing vertigo. Research indicates that the Epley maneuver is extremely effective for people with BPPV. You can perform the maneuver at home by following this simple procedure:

  1. Start by sitting upright on a flat surface, with a pillow behind you and with your legs outstretched.
  2. Turn your head 45 degrees to the right.
  3. With your head still titled, quickly recline with your head on the pillow. Stay in this position for at least 30 seconds.
  4. Slowly turn your head to the left, a full 90 degrees, without lifting your neck.
  5. Engage your whole body, turning it to the left so that you are completely on your left side.
  6. Slowly return to your original position, looking forward and sitting straight up.

You may also have someone assist you with the Epley maneuver by guiding your head according to the steps outlined above. It can be repeated three times in a row, and you may feel dizzy during each movement.

Semont-Toupet maneuver

Semont-Toupet maneuver

The Semont-Toupet maneuver is a similar set of movements that you can perform at home to treat vertigo. This maneuver is less well-known, but some studies claim it is just as effective. The Semont-Toupet maneuver is very similar to the Epley Maneuver, but it requires less neck flexibility.

  1. Start by sitting upright on a flat surface, with a pillow behind you and with your legs outstretched.
  2. Lie down, turning to your right, and look to your left side, looking upward.
  3. Quickly sit up and turn to your left side, keeping your head facing to your left. You will now be looking down toward the ground.
  4. Slowly return to your original position, looking forward and sitting straight up.
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Brandt-Daroff exercise

Brandt-Daroff exercise

This exercise is most commonly recommended for people with vertigo to do at home, because it is simple to do it unsupervised. You shouldn’t perform the Brandt-Daroff exercise unless you are in a safe place and won’t be driving for a while, because it might provoke increased dizziness for a short period of time.

  1. Start by sitting on a flat surface, with your legs dangling as they would from a chair.
  2. Turn your head as far as you can to the left side, then lay your head and torso down on your right side. Your legs should not move. Stay here for at least 30 seconds.
  3. Sit up and turn your head back to the center position.
  4. Repeat the exercise on the opposite side by turning your head as far as you can to the right side, then laying down on your left side.

You can do this exercise in a set of 5 repetitions and repeat it as often as 3 times a day, twice a week.

Gingko biloba

Gingko biloba

Ginkgo biloba has been studied for its effects on vertigo and found to be as effective as the leading prescription medication to treat vertigo. Gingko biloba extract can be purchased in liquid or capsule form. Taking 240 milligrams of ginkgo biloba each day should lessen your vertigo symptoms and make you feel more on-balance.

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Stress management

Stress management

Some conditions that cause vertigo, including Meniere’s disease, can be triggered by stress. Developing coping strategies to navigate stressful circumstances could decrease your episodes of vertigo. Practicing meditation and deep-breathing techniques are a good place to start. Long-term stress isn’t something you can simply breathe through, and often the causes of stress aren’t things that you can cut out of your life. Simply being aware of what is causing you stress might cut down on your vertigo symptoms.

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Yoga and tai chi

Yoga and tai chi

Yoga and tai chi are known to reduce stress while increasing flexibility and balance. Physical therapy performed in an outpatient setting trains your brain to compensate for the cause of your vertigo, and exercise you do at home can mimic this effect. Try simple yoga poses, such as Child’s Pose and Corpse Pose, when you’re feeling dizzy. Be cautious about anything that involves sudden bending forward, as that could make your symptoms temporarily feel stronger.

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Adequate amount of sleep

Adequate amount of sleep

Feelings of vertigo can be triggered by sleep deprivation. If you’re experiencing vertigo for the first time, it might be a result of stress or lack of sleep. If you can stop what you’re doing and take a short nap, you may find that your feelings of vertigo have resolved themselves.

Hydration

Hydration

Sometimes vertigo is caused by simple dehydration. Reducing your sodium intake may help. But the best way to stay hydrated is to simply drink plenty of water. Monitor your water intake and try to account for hot, humid conditions and sweaty situations that might make you lose extra fluids. Plan to drink extra water during times you tend to become dehydrated. You might find that simply being aware of how much water you’re drinking helps decrease vertigo episodes.

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Vitamin D

Vitamin D

If you suspect your vertigo is connected to something you aren’t getting in your diet, you could be right. A study suggests that a lack of vitamin D can worsen symptoms for people that have BPPV, the most common cause of vertigo. A glass of fortified milk or orange juice, canned tuna, and even egg yolks will all give your levels of vitamin D a boost. Have your doctor check your vitamin D levels so you know if you need more in your diet or if you need a supplement.

Avoiding alcohol

Avoiding alcohol

Beyond the dizziness you feel while drinking, alcohol can actually change the composition of the fluid in your inner ear, according to the Vestibular Disorders Association. Alcohol also dehydrates you. These things can affect your balance even when you’re sober. Cutting back on alcohol consumption, or even stopping completely, might help your vertigo symptoms.

When to See Your Doctor

Outlook

Vertigo is not a diagnosis, but it’s a symptom of an underlying condition if it keeps occurring. Treating vertigo at home might work as a short-term solution. But if you continue to experience frequent vertigo, it’s important to find out the cause. Your general practitioner might be able to diagnose you, or you may be referred to an ear, nose, and throat specialist or neurologist for further evaluation.

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