What Is Vertigo?

Vertigo is the sensation of spinning and a specific kind of dizziness. It’s the sense that you or your environment is moving or spinning when in actuality there is no movement. People commonly classify vertigo with other types of dizziness. By pinpointing its causes, you can see how it differentiates from other types of dizziness.

Vertigo is often triggered by a position change of your head. When experiencing vertigo, people often describe it as feeling that they are:

  • Spinning
  • Tilting
  • Swaying
  • Unbalanced
  • Pulling to one direction

There are other symptoms people commonly describe such as nausea, headaches, body sweats, ringing in the ears, hearing loss, or abnormal eye movements. Any of these symptoms can last from a few minutes to few hours and unfortunately come and go.

There are two causes of vertigo. It is brought on by the disturbance in the balance organs of the inner ear, or a disturbance in parts of the brain or sensory nerve pathways. The disturbance in the inner ear brings on peripheral vertigo. Inside the ear are organs that send messages to the brain in response to gravity. We are able to tell our brains when there is movement in the vertical position, allowing us to keep balance. Disturbance or inflammation of these organs produces the sensation that is vertigo. This type of vertigo can be caused by a calcium build-up in the inner ear canals. The build-up could be caused by a trauma to the head.

A disturbance of the central nervous system produces central vertigo. There are two areas involving a disturbance that can cause central vertigo. One area is the parts of the brain that deal with interaction between the senses of vision and balance. The other area is an interruption of sensory messages to and from the thalamus part of the brain.

Fortunately, vertigo can be something that only occurs once. However, if it becomes a recurring instance, you should seek medical treatment by an ear, nose, and throat specialist. It is important to get it checked out because dizziness can be a symptom of a serious brain problem (stroke, brain bleed, etc.). Vertigo treatments can be done by certain prescription medications such as calcium channel blockers or beta blockers. Others can just seek physical therapy treatment where patients are taught a series of exercises that position the head to move particles in the inner ear.

Chattanooga Cold Laser

Are you taking medications to relieve pain? Are these medications truly helping you? It is important to understand that medications are a temporary relief for pain. Why not consider physical therapy and laser therapy? Laser therapy is a non-invasive, drug-free solution for pain.  Laser therapy works by increasing blood flow to the targeted area to allow medical professionals, such as physical therapists, to provide a solution for pain relief and tissue regeneration to their patients.

If you are considering laser therapy, it is crucial to select the right laser applicator. A physical therapist who specialises in laser therapy will begin the procedure by evaluating the type and depth of the condition that needs to be treated. Laser therapy is determined by collimation (spot size/spread of light source or how deep into the muscle tissue the laser must reach to relieve symptoms), wavelength, and power.

Technology is becoming more common in physical therapy practices as it has progressed and become more advanced. Enhanced Physical Therapy has recently added the Vectra Genisys Transport Laser in our office. This device allows us to have a simple way of providing feedback and keeping track of the history of our patients. Each applicator has a specific area that targets the body.

A single emitter laser diode is ideal for knee, wrist, and ankle, whereas the 9 Diode Cluster is ideal for neck and shoulder. If a patient is experiencing pain in the thigh, shoulder, or back, the 13 Diode Cluster is the best to use. If large body areas are inflicted with pain, the 33 Diode Cluster is the way to go. Your physical therapist will be able to provide you with the information and a recommendation for which laser to use for your specific injury or condition.

Laser therapy uses different sources of light and each has its own use and characteristics. The Laser Diode, for example, targets areas where problems are deeper into the body but are perfectly capable in treating superficial conditions. Another example is the Super Luminous Diode, which is more common for treating superficial conditions. The Light Emitting Diodes, which target a few millimeters into the body’s tissue, is best used when conditions are very close to the surface.

Laser therapy has many benefits. The first is providing relief to symptoms including minor muscle and joint aches, pain, and stiffness. Laser therapy also increases blood circulation to provide the appropriate flow of oxygen in the blood to localized areas and can sooth and relieve muscle spasms by relaxing the muscles.