Vertigo is not the usual form of dizziness or motion sickness. Vertigo is a health problem that involves inaccurate sense of the environment that makes it seem as if you or the surroundings are spinning or moving.
- If you feel as if you're moving, it's called subjective vertigo.
- If it's the environment that spins around, it's called objective vertigo.
This condition is caused by problems in the inner ear or the brain. Inflammation within the inner ear due to viral or bacterial infection can bring about vertigo.
Decreased blood flow to the brain, bleeding into the back of the brain, head trauma, neck injury, and intense headache such as migraine are other causes of vertigo.
It can also be a sign of an underlying medical condition like the Meniere's disease, which is an inner ear disorder that affects balance and hearing.
Acoustic neuroma is a tumor of the nerve tissue that can cause vertigo as well as hearing loss and ringing in one of the ears.
- loss of balance
- dizziness with sudden head movements or body motions
- excessive sweating
- abnormal eye movements
Often, a person with vertigo will also have trouble staying in balance while walking or standing. These symptoms can last from a few minutes to few hours. They can also be either constant or episodic.
If you have vertigo, it's imperative to watch out for falls, slips, and other accidents that can happen due to loss of balance. Here are some of the safety precautions that you need to take to avoid vertigo-related injuries.
• At Home
The home is the first place to practice safety precautions as this is where you spend most of your time.
- Night lights should be installed and used so that your paths will be properly illumined even at nighttime.
- Household items should be kept in low shelves that are easy to reach.
- Walkways and floors should always be free of clutter and wetness.
- Install handle bars in the bathroom to avoid slippage.
- If you use throw rugs, replace them with nonskid mats.
- If you're driving or biking, pull over if you feel that you're about to have an attack.
- Always put on a helmet when you engage in physical activities and sports like biking, motorcycling, basketball, etc.
- It would be best to avoid high places to prevent falling in case you lose your balance.
- Don't use devices or machinery that can pose danger if your vertigo attacks.
- Always wear flat shoes with non-slippery soles.
• During Vertigo Attack
When you feel yourself or the world around you spinning or swirling, here are what you should do:
- Lie down and use two or more pillows to elevate your head.
- If you must get up, get up slowly and sit down first before you stand up.
- Keep sitting down if you still feel dizzy.
- Don't tip the head back up or down.
- Don't turn you head or lie flat on your back without the pillows.
- Call for help if it doesn't stop after a while.