Those who experience vertigo describe it as feeling like they are spinning, or that the environment around them is spinning. They usually will explain the sensation as dizziness or being off balance. However, dizziness and vertigo are not the same. Vertigo can often feel like objects are tilting, spinning, floating, or swaying around you. This condition is common, and it can last anywhere between a few minutes to months.
There are two types of vertigo that are caused by different conditions. Peripheral vertigo is caused by problems within the inner ear, and it is the most common cause. This happens when small calcium particles become dislodged. Central vertigo happens from infection, brain tumors, traumatic brain injury or stroke. Other causes include excessive alcohol consumption, fever, and migraines.
In Acupuncture and Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), vertigo is commonly caused by weakness in certain organs, and disharmony within the qi, blood, and body fluids of the body. The use of needles and herbal medicine can restore the capacity for these organs to function optimally. By using the traditional tools of diagnosis (observation of the tongue and pulse) your practitioner can discern the pattern of disharmony that is causing vertigo and other symptoms. In some cases, patients experience immediate improvement after the first treatment. The onset of vertigo in TCM can be several factors including unbalanced emotions which can affect certain organ systems and can upset the balance of yin and yang. Aging and deficiencies with organ systems such as in Liver Yin Deficiency, Kidney Yin Deficiency, and Blood stasis due to injury. There are several factors that may affect this condition but the key to understanding each individual patient’s needs and diagnosis according to TCM is through tongue observation, questions through the initial intake, and pulse diagnosis to get an accurate view and treatment strategy for each patient. Several patients may have the diagnosis of Vertigo yet under the TCM banner one patient may have vertigo due to kidney deficiency, another due to liver yang rising, another blood stasis, and so on.
Come and visit Dr. Tony Willcox at Acupuncture Zen in Delray Beach and see how acupuncture and TCM can help you!
Along with feeling out of balance, vertigo can also show up with: