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Vertigo

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Vertigo is the sensation that the surroundings or one’s self is moving Vertigobut there is no actual movement. One may feel as though he/ she is whirling, spinning, falling or tilting. Moreover, there may be trouble walking or standing. Loss of balance is also common in vertigo. Everyone will experience vertigo at one point in their life, but it is usually temporary, and this is common. But if vertigo occurs often, it may indicate problems in the inner ear. Lightheadedness is different from vertigo. Lightheaded refers to another form of dizziness, where one feels that they are about to pass commonly due to drop in blood pressure and shortage of blood flow to the brain.

Types of Vertigo

Vertigo can be classified into two groups

  • Central vertigo
    • Due to injuryto the balance center of the central nervous system, often the cerebellum or brainstem
    • Accompanied by other neurological problems
    • Poor prognosis
    • Peripheral vertigo
      • Disorder in the inner ear
      • Generally good prognosis

Causes of Vertigo

Vertigo causes can either be due to damages in the central nervous system or inner ear. Some of the common causes include:

  • Benign paroxysmal positional vertigo (BPPV)
    • Most common form
    • Commonly due to sudden head movement or movement in a certain direction
    • Seldom serious
    • Labyrinthitis (inflammation of the inner ear)
      • Due to bacterial or viral infection
      • Associated with abrupt onset of manifestation
      • Hearing loss
      • Meniere’s disease
        • Intermittent vertigo
        • Tinnitus (ringing in the ears)
        • Hearing loss
        • Acoustic neuroma
          • Tumor growth of the nerve tissue
          • Multiple sclerosis
          • Head trauma
          • Migraine
          • Dehydration
          • Reduced blood flow to the base of the brain
          • Hemorrhage
          • Epilepsy
          • Common cold and influence
          • Motion sickness
          • Certain medications
          • Complications from other diseases, such as diabetes
          • Riding a Merry-go-round
          • Spinning one’s self round and round

Symptoms of Vertigo

Symptoms will vary depending on the cause. Symptoms associated with vertigo are the following:

  • Spinning sensation
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Difficulty walking or loss of balance
  • Unsteadiness
  • Altered consciousness level
  • Hearing loss
  • Tinnitus
  • Involuntary eye movements
  • Sudden falls

First Aid Management for Vertigo

If there is an underlying cause, make sure to get treatment for this. Medications will be prescribed by a medical practitioner. But for the meantime, first aid can be performed to prevent symptoms from becoming worse and avoid casualties during vertigo attacks. Vertigo will disappear on its own with proper treatment.

  • Keep still. Sit down or lie down. Avoid bending down or extending the neck.
  • Avoid stressful situations to not aggravate symptoms.
  • Also, avoid driving vehicles and handling equipment.
  • If one wants to lie down, elevate the head using two or more pillows. As much as possible, keep the environment calm and quiet, preferably dark.
  • If the person wants to vomit, assist the person to his/ her side.
  • Make sure they stay hydrated by drinking lots of water. Avoid dehydration at all costs to avoid complications.
  • Do not stand up until vertigo completely disappears.

Vertigo should be treated to avoid exacerbating the symptoms. Join in first aid training to learn how to treat people of vertigo and other symptoms involving dizziness.

                Vertigo is the sensation that the surroundings or one’s self is moving but there is no actual movement. One may feel as though he/ she is whirling, spinning, falling or tilting. Moreover, there may be trouble walking or standing. Loss of balance is also common in vertigo. Everyone will experience vertigo at one point in their life, but it is usually temporary, and this is common. But if vertigo occurs often, it may indicate problems in the inner ear. Lightheadedness is different from vertigo. Lightheaded refers to another form of dizziness, where one feels that they are about to pass commonly due to drop in blood pressure and shortage of blood flow to the brain.

Types of Vertigo

                Vertigo can be classified into two groups

§  Central vertigo

o   Due to injuryto the balance center of the central nervous system, often the cerebellum or brainstem

o   Accompanied by other neurological problems

o   Poor prognosis

§  Peripheral vertigo

o   Disorder in the inner ear

o   Generally good prognosis

Causes of Vertigo

                Vertigo causes can either be due to damages in the central nervous system or inner ear. Some of the common causes include:

§  Benign paroxysmal positional vertigo (BPPV)

o   Most common form

o   Commonly due to sudden head movement or movement in a certain direction

o   Seldom serious

§  Labyrinthitis (inflammation of the inner ear)

o   Due to bacterial or viral infection

o   Associated with abrupt onset of manifestation

o   Hearing loss

§  Meniere’s disease

o   Intermittent vertigo

o   Tinnitus (ringing in the ears)

o   Hearing loss

§  Acoustic neuroma

o   Tumor growth of the nerve tissue

§  Multiple sclerosis

§  Head trauma

§  Migraine

§  Dehydration

§  Reduced blood flow to the base of the brain

§  Hemorrhage

§  Epilepsy

§  Common cold and influence

§  Motion sickness

§  Certain medications

§  Complications from other diseases, such as diabetes

§  Riding a Merry-go-round

§  Spinning one’s self round and round

Symptoms of Vertigo

                Symptoms will vary depending on the cause. Symptoms associated with vertigo are the following:

§  Spinning sensation

§  Nausea and vomiting

§  Difficulty walking or loss of balance

§  Unsteadiness

§  Altered consciousness level

§  Hearing loss

§  Tinnitus

§  Involuntary eye movements

§  Sudden falls

First Aid Management for Vertigo

                If there is an underlying cause, make sure to get treatment for this. Medications will be prescribed by a medical practitioner. But for the meantime, first aid can be performed to prevent symptoms from becoming worse and avoid casualties during vertigo attacks. Vertigo will disappear on its own with proper treatment.

§  Keep still. Sit down or lie down. Avoid bending down or extending the neck.

§  Avoid stressful situations to not aggravate symptoms.

§  Also, avoid driving vehicles and handling equipment.

§  If one wants to lie down, elevate the head using two or more pillows. As much as possible, keep the environment calm and quiet, preferably dark.

§  If the person wants to vomit, assist the person to his/ her side.

§  Make sure they stay hydrated by drinking lots of water. Avoid dehydration at all costs to avoid complications.

§  Do not stand up until vertigo completely disappears.

Vertigo should be treated to avoid exacerbating the symptoms. Join in first aid training to learn how to treat people of vertigo and other symptoms involving dizziness.

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