Cervical Vertigo Relief: 18 Natural Strategies for Better Balance

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Discover natural strategies to alleviate cervical vertigo symptoms, including supplements, sleep tips, exercise advice, and dietary considerations. These approaches offer effective relief and promote better balance.

Embarking on daily tasks with a persistent sense of dizziness or instability can be deeply unsettling, especially when it originates from a condition as intricate as cervical vertigo.

Unlike typical forms of vertigo, which stem from inner ear issues, cervical vertigo arises from abnormalities or disruptions in the delicate structures of the neck region.

Exploring the complexities of this condition—understanding its underlying causes, recognizing its diverse symptoms, and exploring effective management strategies—is crucial for those grappling with its challenges.

What is cervical vertigo ?

Cervical vertigo refers to a type of vertigo or dizziness that originates from issues in the cervical spine, particularly the neck region.

Unlike other forms of vertigo, which typically stem from inner ear problems, neck-related dizziness arises from abnormalities or disturbances in the cervical spine, such as degenerative disc disease, cervical spondylosis, whiplash injuries, or cervical osteoarthritis.
These cervical spine conditions can affect the nerves, blood vessels, or muscles in the neck, leading to sensations of dizziness, imbalance, and disorientation.

What is the difference between BPVV and cervical vertigo?

Benign Paroxysmal Positional Vertigo (BPPV) and cervical vertigo are two distinct conditions causing vertigo but with different origins and mechanisms.

BPPV stems from inner ear issues involving displaced calcium carbonate crystals within the semicircular canals, resulting in brief, intense bouts of vertigo triggered by specific head movements.
Cervical vertigo arises from cervical spine abnormalities, such as degenerative disc disease or cervical osteoarthritis, leading to dizziness and imbalance provoked by neck movements or cervical spine compression.

Diagnosis for BPPV involves positional tests and canalith repositioning maneuvers, while neck-related imbalance diagnosis entails a clinical evaluation and imaging studies to assess cervical spine abnormalities.

Treatment for BPPV focuses on repositioning maneuvers to relocate displaced otoconia, whereas cervical vertigo treatment targets underlying cervical spine issues through medications, physical therapy, and, if necessary, surgery.

Causes of cervical vertigo

Cervical vertigo, while not as well understood as other forms of vertigo, can stem from various underlying conditions affecting the cervical spine.
Among these are degenerative disc disease, where the intervertebral discs between vertebrae deteriorate over time, leading to instability and potential compression of nerves or blood vessels.
Additionally, cervical spondylosis, a common age-related condition characterized by the degeneration of spinal discs and facet joints in the neck, can contribute to cervical spine-related dizziness.

Traumatic events such as whiplash injuries from car accidents or sports-related impacts may also trigger cervical vertigo, causing disruptions to the delicate structures of the cervical spine and vestibular system.
Moreover, cervical osteoarthritis, marked by the breakdown of cartilage in the neck joints, can result in inflammation, stiffness, and ultimately vertigo symptoms.

Muscle tension in the cervical region, often due to poor posture, prolonged sitting, or stress, can exacerbate cervical vertigo by placing additional strain on neck muscles and affecting blood flow to the brain.

Furthermore, nerve compression in the cervical spine, typically caused by conditions like herniated discs or spinal stenosis, may lead to neurological symptoms including vertigo.

Symptoms of cervical vertigo

– Dizziness or spinning sensation

Individuals with cervicogenic vertigo often experience a disconcerting sensation of dizziness or spinning, particularly exacerbated by head movements or changes in position.

– Neck pain or stiffness

Persistent discomfort or stiffness in the neck is a common accompaniment to cervical vertigo, intensifying with movement or prolonged periods of sitting.

– Headaches

Headaches, often originating from the base of the skull or neck, can manifest as dull aches or throbbing pain, worsening with neck movements or extended periods of standing or sitting.

– Nausea or vomiting

Some individuals may experience episodes of nausea or vomiting, especially during severe vertigo attacks, further contributing to feelings of discomfort and debilitation.

– Visual disturbances

Blurred vision, difficulty focusing, or sensitivity to light may occur concurrently with cervical vertigo episodes, exacerbating feelings of disorientation and imbalance.

– Difficulty in maintaining balance

A significant challenge for those with cervical vertigo is maintaining balance, characterized by a sense of unsteadiness or instability, potentially hindering daily activities such as walking or standing.

symptoms of cervical vertigo

How long does cervical vertigo last?

The duration of cervical vertigo episodes can vary widely among individuals and depends on various factors, including the underlying cause, severity of symptoms, and effectiveness of treatment.

In some cases, cervical vertigo episodes may be brief and resolve spontaneously within a few minutes or hours.
However, for others, symptoms may persist for days, weeks, or even longer, especially if the underlying cervical spine issues are not adequately addressed.

Additionally, certain triggers or exacerbating factors, such as neck movements, postural changes, or stress, may prolong or intensify cervicogenic dizziness symptoms. Therefore, the duration of cervical vertigo can be unpredictable and may require ongoing management to alleviate symptoms and improve quality of life.

Treatments for cervical vertigo

Effective management of cervical vertigo often involves a multifaceted approach.
While medications such as vestibular suppressants, muscle relaxants, or pain relievers may provide symptomatic relief, they may not address the underlying cause of vertigo.

In cases where cervical spine abnormalities or structural issues contribute to vertigo symptoms, surgical interventions such as cervical fusion or decompression may be considered.
These procedures aim to alleviate pressure on nerves or blood vessels in the cervical spine, potentially reducing vertigo symptoms and improving overall quality of life.

What doctor treats cervical vertigo?

Cervical vertigo is typically diagnosed and treated by healthcare professionals specializing in neurology, otolaryngology (ear, nose, and throat), or physical medicine and rehabilitation.

Neurologists are physicians who specialize in diagnosing and treating disorders of the nervous system, including conditions that may contribute to neck-induced vertigo, such as cervical spine abnormalities or neurological issues affecting the vestibular system.

Otolaryngologists, also known as ENT (ear, nose, and throat) specialists, are trained to diagnose and treat disorders of the ear, including inner ear conditions that can cause vertigo.
While cervical vertigo primarily originates from the cervical spine rather than the inner ear, otolaryngologists may still be involved in evaluating and managing related symptoms.

Physical medicine and rehabilitation physicians, also called physiatrists, specialize in non-surgical treatments for musculoskeletal and neurological conditions, making them well-suited to address cervical spine issues contributing to vertigo symptoms.
They may employ a variety of treatment modalities, including medication management, physical therapy, and interventional procedures, to alleviate symptoms and improve functional outcomes for individuals with cervicogenic vertigo.

In some cases, a multidisciplinary approach involving collaboration between different specialists may be necessary to provide comprehensive care for cervical vertigo, addressing both the cervical spine abnormalities and associated vestibular symptoms.

Home remedies for neck-related imbalance

In addition to medical interventions, various home remedies can help you manage cervical vertigo symptoms and improve your overall well-being.
These include:

  • Calm dizziness

Employing relaxation techniques such as deep breathing, meditation, or progressive muscle relaxation can help you cope with episodes of dizziness and reduce anxiety associated with vertigo.

  • Stillness

During vertigo episodes, minimizing head and neck movements by sitting or lying down in a comfortable position can help alleviate symptoms and prevent falls or injuries.

  • Heat therapy

Applying heat wraps or heating pads to the neck can help soothe muscle tension and alleviate neck pain associated with cervical vertigo.
Heat therapy promotes blood circulation to the affected area, facilitating muscle relaxation and pain relief.

  • Cold therapy

Alternating between heat and cold therapy, such as applying ice packs to the neck, may help reduce inflammation and numbness, providing temporary relief from cervical vertigo symptoms.

  • Controlled breathing

Practicing slow, controlled breathing techniques can help regulate heart rate and promote relaxation, reducing feelings of stress and anxiety often associated with vertigo.

  • Maintaining proper posture

Practicing good posture, especially when sitting or standing for extended periods, can help reduce strain on the cervical spine and alleviate neck stiffness or discomfort associated with cervical vertigo.

What supplements help cervical vertigo?

In the pursuit of managing neck-related dizziness symptoms, incorporating certain supplements into your routine may offer support for spinal health and alleviate associated discomfort.

  • Omega-3 Fatty Acids

Omega-3 fatty acids, commonly found in fish oil or flaxseed oil supplements, boast potent anti-inflammatory properties that may help reduce inflammation in the cervical spine.

Recommended dosage: 250-500 mg of combined EPA and DHA per day.
Precautions: Fish oil supplements may interact with blood-thinning medications, so consult with a healthcare provider if you’re taking such medications.

  • Vitamin D

Vitamin D plays a vital role in maintaining bone health and may help prevent or slow down degenerative changes in the cervical spine.

Recommended dosage: 600-800 IU per day for adults, although higher doses may be needed for those with deficiencies.
Precautions: It’s essential to monitor levels through blood tests and adjust dosage accordingly.

  • Magnesium

Magnesium is essential for muscle relaxation and may alleviate muscle tension in the cervical region, which can exacerbate vertigo symptoms.

Recommended dosage: 200-400 mg per day, although individual needs may vary.
Precautions: High doses of magnesium supplements can cause diarrhea, so start with a lower dose and gradually increase if needed.

  • B Vitamins

B vitamins, including B6, B9 (folate), and B12, play a crucial role in supporting nerve function and maintaining a healthy nervous system.

Recommended dosage: Varies depending on the specific B vitamin and individual needs.
A B-complex supplement typically provides adequate amounts of each B vitamin (ad).
Precautions: Some people may experience mild digestive upset when taking B vitamins, but this is generally rare.

  • Turmeric/Curcumin

Turmeric contains curcumin, a potent anti-inflammatory and antioxidant compound that may help reduce inflammation in the cervical spine.

Recommended dosage: 500-2,000 mg of curcumin extract per day, depending on the product’s concentration (ad).
Precautions: Curcumin supplements may interact with certain medications, such as blood thinners and anti-inflammatory drugs, so consult with a healthcare provider if you’re taking these medications.

  • Ginger

Ginger boasts anti-inflammatory properties and may help reduce muscle soreness and inflammation in the neck and cervical spine.

Recommended dosage: 500-2,000 mg of ginger extract per day, or consuming fresh ginger in culinary preparations.
Precautions: Ginger supplements may cause mild digestive discomfort in some individuals, but this is generally well-tolerated.

  • Probiotics

Probiotic supplements support gut health, which indirectly influences inflammation levels and overall immune function (ad).

Recommended dosage: Follow the manufacturer’s instructions, as dosages may vary depending on the specific probiotic strain.
Precautions: Probiotics are generally safe for most people, but those with compromised immune systems or certain medical conditions should consult with a healthcare provider before taking probiotic supplements.

dizziness cervical

Cervical vertigo exercises

Physical therapy exercises tailored to strengthen neck muscles, improve posture, and enhance balance can be beneficial.
These exercises aim to alleviate muscle tension, improve range of motion in the cervical spine, and enhance proprioception to reduce vertigo triggers.

  • Brandt-Daroff exercise

This specific exercise involves a series of head and body movements designed to desensitize the vestibular system and reduce vertigo symptoms.
By repeatedly moving from a seated to lying position and vice versa, you can gradually habituate to vertigo-inducing movements and experience symptom relief.

  • Neck turn

Gently rotating the neck from side to side can help improve range of motion and alleviate muscle tension in the cervical spine.
This simple exercise promotes flexibility and strengthens neck muscles, reducing the likelihood of vertigo triggers.

  • Head tilt

Tilting the head forward, backward, and sideways can help stretch and strengthen neck muscles, promoting better posture and reducing strain on the cervical spine.
This exercise also improves proprioception and spatial awareness, contributing to overall balance and stability.

Nutritional strategies for cervical vertigo management

Healthy diet

A balanced diet with a variety of nutrient-rich foods is vital for overall health and well-being, and it can significantly impact the management of neck-induced vertigo symptoms.

Fruits and vegetables, abundant in vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants, play a crucial role in reducing inflammation throughout the body.
These anti-inflammatory properties can help alleviate symptoms associated with cervical vertigo by mitigating any underlying inflammation in the cervical spine or surrounding tissues.

Whole grains provide essential carbohydrates for energy while also offering fiber to support digestive health and maintain stable blood sugar levels.

Lean proteins, such as poultry, fish, beans, and tofu, are important for muscle repair and growth, aiding in the maintenance of proper posture and reducing strain on the neck muscles.

Additionally, incorporating sources of omega-3 fatty acids, such as fatty fish, flaxseeds, and walnuts, may further enhance the anti-inflammatory effects of the diet, potentially alleviating symptoms of cervical vertigo.

Dietary awareness

Avoiding heavy meals or alcohol consumption before bedtime can help minimize vertigo triggers and promote better sleep quality.
Being mindful of your choices and their potential impact on cervical vertigo symptoms can contribute to better management of the condition and improved overall well-being.

Adequate hydration

Proper hydration is essential for optimal bodily function and may play a significant role in managing cervical spine-related dizziness symptoms.
Drinking an adequate amount of water throughout the day helps maintain spinal disc hydration, ensuring the flexibility and shock-absorbing capabilities of the spine.

Dehydration can exacerbate symptoms of cervical vertigo by reducing blood flow to the brain and increasing muscle tension in the neck and shoulders.
By staying hydrated, individuals can support proper circulation, ensuring that essential nutrients reach the affected areas of the cervical spine.
Additionally, adequate hydration supports overall cellular function and metabolism, promoting overall well-being and potentially reducing the severity of vertigo episodes.

Lifestyle modifications for managing cervicogenic dizziness

In addition to natural remedies, lifestyle modifications play a crucial role in managing neck-associated vertigo and improving overall well-being.

Incorporating ergonomic adjustments into daily activities, such as maintaining proper posture while sitting, standing, and sleeping, can help alleviate strain on the neck and reduce vertigo triggers.

Avoiding activities that exacerbate symptoms, such as sudden neck movements or prolonged periods of sitting, can also minimize vertigo episodes.

Furthermore, implementing stress-reduction techniques, such as mindfulness meditation, yoga, or tai chi, may help alleviate tension in the neck muscles and reduce feelings of anxiety or dizziness.

Engaging in regular physical activity tailored to individual abilities, such as gentle stretching exercises or low-impact aerobic activities, can promote spinal health, enhance balance, and reduce the frequency and severity of cervical vertigo symptoms.

And finally, maintaining a consistent sleep schedule and prioritizing adequate rest can support overall vestibular function and improve symptom management.

How to treat cervical vertigo?

In the journey to overcome cervical vertigo, knowledge and empowerment emerge as invaluable allies.

By adopting a comprehensive approach that blends medical insight, tailored therapies, natural remedies, and mindful lifestyle adjustments, you can regain control over your vertigo symptoms and enrich your overall well-being.

Though cervical vertigo may cast shadows of uncertainty, it does not extinguish the hope for a brighter tomorrow.

Frequently asked questions about neck-associated vertigo

What worsens cervical vertigo?

Cervical vertigo can be exacerbated by certain factors such as poor posture, neck strain from prolonged sitting or standing, sudden head movements, stress, and underlying cervical spine issues like degenerative disc disease or cervical osteoarthritis.

How should I sleep if I have cervical vertigo?

It’s recommended to sleep on a firm mattress with a supportive pillow that keeps the neck in a neutral position. Avoid sleeping on your stomach, as this can strain the neck. Instead, try sleeping on your back or side with proper neck support to alleviate pressure on the cervical spine.

Can I exercise with cervical vertigo?

Exercise can be beneficial for cervical vertigo as long as it’s gentle and doesn’t exacerbate symptoms. Focus on low-impact activities such as walking, swimming, or tai chi, and avoid high-impact exercises or activities that involve sudden neck movements. Consult with a healthcare professional before starting any exercise regimen.

Which vitamin deficiency causes vertigo?

Vertigo can be associated with deficiencies in certain vitamins, particularly vitamin D and B vitamins such as B12. Vitamin D deficiency is linked to balance and vestibular dysfunction, while B12 deficiency can affect nerve function, leading to vertigo symptoms.

Is walking beneficial for cervical vertigo?

Walking is generally considered beneficial for cervical vertigo as it promotes blood circulation, improves balance, and strengthens muscles without putting excessive strain on the neck. Start with short walks and gradually increase intensity as tolerated. However, consult with a healthcare professional before starting any exercise program.

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Natural health is paramount to me, natural remedies have always been part of my life. Whatever the problem, I make sure to find natural solutions that can often be associated with traditional medicine. Everything I write here allows me to share them with you.

The content of this article is not intended to replace medical advice or any treatment.
Keep in mind that you should contact your doctor or any qualified healthcare professional to determine if you can add a supplement to your treatment or change your diet.

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