Vertigo refers to the feeling that the world around you is moving or spinning. It is often a symptom rather than a condition in itself, and its extent varies from one person to another.
For some, the symptom is barely noticeable, while for others it is so intense that it interferes with one’s daily routine and warrants medical checkup. The period a vertigo attack lasts also varies, with some developing suddenly and disappearing just as fast while others last far much longer.
Other symptoms that often accompany vertigo include dizziness, poor balance, nausea, headache, ringing in the ears and an overall sickly feeling. Vertigo is often caused by disorders that affect the inner ear resulting in the characteristic off-balance feeling.
Sometimes, anxiety and stressful factors trigger vertigo but for the most part, it goes away on its own.There are a number of home remedies however, that speed up the recovery process and reduce the intensity of the symptoms. In severe cases however, it becomes important to seek professional medical help to establish whether there are any underlying conditions.
1. The Epley Maneuver:
Time Required: 30 Min
What You Need: A comfortable place, preferably a bed and a pillow/throw cushion.
The Epley Maneuver is a set of exercises that help get rid of vertigo by targeting the inner ear and helping improve its function. This remedy is easy to use and has minimal associated risk factors that make it an ideal remedy. Follow the set of directions indicated below to help you manage vertigo. You need a comfortable place from where to effect this remedy.
- Sit upright on your bed and put the pillow or throw cushion behind you in such a way that when you lie down, the pillow will fall right under your shoulders.
- The next step is determined by the side affected by the vertigo, that is whether it is the left or the right ear. If you experience the vertigo in the right ear, tilt your head to the right at a right angle. If the vertigo affects your left ear, then tilt your head to the left at a right angle. Follow through with the rest of the directions accordingly.
- Lean back and gently lie down so that your shoulders are on the pillow and your head is tilted back. Maintain this position for about 30 seconds.
- After this, turn your head at a right angle without lifting your head and maintain this position for another 30 minutes.
- While still in this position, turn your entire body at 90 degrees and hold this position for a minute.
- Sit up as slowly as you can all the while restoring your head’s position. Avoid lifting your head suddenly and making jerking movements as this easily worsens the vertigo.
- Repeat this procedure thrice daily until the vertigo attacks are spaced for more than 24 hours. Typically, the condition resolves after about a week or so.
NOTE: The best time to use this remedy is at bedtime and making a follow-up in the morning and during the day.
Time Required: 20 Min
What You Need: 1 Tablespoon of sesame oil, 1 teaspoon each of cardamom and cinnamon powder, cotton wool and warm water bath
To treat vertigo naturally, make use of all the goodness found in ginger and cardamom. Both popular culinary additions, these herbs have a soothing aroma that helps reduce the extent of the vertigo as well as alleviate the associated symptoms of the same. Sesame oil makes for an excellent base medium.
- Warm the sesame oil in a water bath and set aside.
- Mix the two powders well and pour in the powder mixture into the sesame oil.
- Stir the oil so that the powder us well dispersed in it.
- Massage your head gently using this oil mixture.
- Let the oil mixture sit on the skin for a couple of hours.
- Repeat this procedure daily for best results.
3. Lemon Balm:
Time Required: 30 Min
What You Need: 1 Cup of water, 1 tablespoon of dried lemon balm and a strainer.
Lemon balm is believed to have healing properties that help with nervousness and vertigo. This is, in part, attributed to the health effects of the balm on the circulatory and nervous systems. The latter is important because vertigo results from constant sending of nervous signals from the ear. Prepare the remedy as indicated in the procedure below.
- Place the cup of water in a pan and boil.
- Add the lemon balm to the hot water and lower the heat to let it simmer for 10 minutes.
- Pass the tea through a strainer and drink daily to help alleviate the symptoms of vertigo.
- You may also inhale the balm as it simmers.
- Do this for about 5 minutes to allow you to regain some balance and reduce the ‘off-balance’ feeling.
4. Lemongrass Ginger Tea:
Time Required: 20 Min
What You Need: 5 Stalks of fresh lemongrass, 1 cup of water in a pan, a small piece of ginger and honey to sweeten.
Lemongrass has long been used to treat dizziness and nausea, two of the most common symptoms alongside vertigo. By preparing herbal tea using lemongrass, you should be able to alleviate the vertigo with ease. Ginger on the other hand, is an effective treatment for dizziness. Prepare a cup of lemongrass ginger herbal tea to eliminate vertigo and leave you feeling refreshed.
- Chop the fresh lemongrass so that the stalks are able to fit into your mug (particularly effective if you are preparing more than 1 cup).
- Boil the water in a pan before adding the chopped lemongrass stalk and fresh ginger (which you may pound if you like).
- Let the stalks steep in the boiling water for 10 minutes before straining.
- Stir in the honey and drink daily. You may serve the tea hot or cold depending on your preferences.
5. Gingko Biloba Herbal Tea:
Time Required: 20 Min
What You Need: 1 Teaspoon of gingko leaf, 1 cup of water in a pan, honey (natural sweetener) or lemon juice (optional).
Gingko biloba is an ancient Chinese medicine that has been used to treat an array of conditions and help provide relief from the accompanying symptoms. When used to treat vertigo, the herb’s ability to increase the flow of blood to the brain and inner ear goes a long way in reducing the intensity of vertigo. Over time, the feeling of a spinning world is significantly reduced. The best way to enjoy Gingko’s benefits is to prepare herbal tea as indicated in the simple steps below.
- Place the gingko leaf in the pan.
- Boil the water or 5 minutes and switch off the heat to allow the leaf to steep for about 10 minutes.
- Strain the gingko tea into a cup and add honey as a natural sweetener.
- You may also stir in the lemon juice if you love to.
- Drink this tea on a daily basis until you are able to get rid of the vertigo.
6. Water Therapy – Stay Hydrated:
Time Required: Varied throughout the day
What You Need: Adequate drinking water and a handful of ice cubes (optional).
One of the easiest and most effective ways to deal with vertigo is to stay hydrated. The simple reason for this is that dehydration is closely related to dizziness, which in turn predisposes you to vertigo. By staying hydrated, you should be able to keep the accompanying symptoms of vertigo at bay. Add ice-cubes for a more pronounced effect and for greater relief.
- Add a few ice cubes to the water and drink.
- Do this severally during the day to prevent dehydration.
- Secondly, take a cold shower to cool your body. Alternatively, pour cold water on your head and at the nape of your neck.
- This remedy provides instant relief, and is most effective when used immediately the vertigo sets in.
NOTE: Resist the temptation to use the ice cubes directly on the skin as this easily damages the skin with the formation of frost bites.
7. Head Massage Therapy:
Time Required: 30 Min
What You Need: Massage techniques and preferred massage oil.
Head massage therapy is effective in the management of vertigo as it focuses on specific trigger points located in the neck region. This not only improves circulation, it also works to reduce the dizziness and relieve neck stiffness. By relaxing the relevant muscles in the neck, you are less prone to vertigo. You may massage your head, or opt for a professional massage therapist for a more intense session.
- Massage your head and neck in gentle circular motions, focusing on muscles found in the back of the neck.
- Use your choice massage oil for to prevent friction.
- Regular massage prevents frequent vertigo attacks and helps you resume your daily activities.
8. Peppermint Oil:
Time Required: 15 Min
What You Need: 5 Drops of peppermint oil and cotton wool. You may use cypress oil in place of peppermint oil. Aromatherapy diffuser
Peppermint oil is one of the quickest ways to get rid of vertigo naturally. A popular essential oil, peppermint is loved for its special aroma and health benefits. The oil is rich in a compound known as ismenthol which goes a long way in getting rid of dizziness and reduces the spinning sensation. Cypress oil is an excellent substitute as it enhances oxygen circulation to the brain while reducing dizziness. Use this remedy on the go by either applying it topically or inhalation as indicated below.
- Place a few drops of peppermint oil on your forefingers and massage your forehead in circular motions.
- Extend this massage to the nape of the neck and repeat whenever the need arises.
- Alternatively, soak a cotton ball with peppermint oil and inhale the aroma whenever the vertigo strikes.
NOTE: If you get frequent vertigo attacks, you may pt to incest in an aromatherapy diffuser that spreads the oil into your immediate surrounding so that it is easier to inhale.
9. Frankincense Oil
Time Required: 10 Min
What You Need: A few drops of frankincense oil.
Unlike peppermint/ cypress oils that are applied topically to help treat vertigo, frankincense oil is used internally by placing it under the tongue. Granted, the oil’s taste takes some getting used to, but is effective in treating vertigo. Follow the simple directions outlined below to use this oil.
- Place a few drops of the frankincense oil under the tongue and wait at least 5 minutes for the vertigo to subsides.
10. Hydrogen Peroxide:
Time Required: 20 Min
What You Need: 1/4 Cup of hydrogen peroxide (available at your local chemist) and cotton wool.
One of the causes of vertigo is the blockage of the inner ear as a result of formation of crystal deposits inside. One of the most effective remedies for this is the use of Hydrogen peroxide, a colorless liquid that is made up of hydrogen and oxygen molecules. When a few drops of hydrogen peroxide are added to the ear, they help loosen the crystals formed in the ear. This eases the vertigo and provides much needed relief. Use this remedy as follows.
- Soak the cotton wool in the hydrogen peroxide for a few minutes.
- Lay on your side so that the affected ear faces upwards.
- Squeeze the excess hydrogen peroxide and let a few drops of the solution drip into the ear. This is usually accompanied by a popping sound with which there is quick relief.
- Remain in this position for 10 minutes before sitting up.
- Repeat this procedure twice daily.
11. Additional Tips for Managing Vertigo:
- Get a good night’s rest everyday to avoid dizziness. Remember to use a proper pillow.
- Take a healthy diet to provide your body with adequate nutrients.
- If you get severe vertigo attacks, it is advisable to avoid driving and handling heavy machinery as this poses great risk to your safety. In addition to this, you may want to use a cane for stability.
- Avoid sudden jerking movements as this can easily act as a trigger for vertigo.
- The same applies to immediate exposure to bright lights, loud sounds and intense smells.
- Lastly, sit down immediately vertigo sets in to maintain your balance.
These timeless remedies have been used to treat vertigo naturally, and go a long way in getting rid of the discomfort that accompanies this symptom. If you get frequent attacks, or vertigo interferes with your work routine and family life, do not hesitate to see a medical doctor.