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Avoiding Cervicogenic Dizziness with MS

November 29, 2016

Cervical Vertigo (also called cervicogenic dizziness) can be defined as vertigo due to a neck disorder. At its most aggressive, cervicogenic dizziness can be quite disabling, with symptoms including postural unsteadiness , difficulty swallowing, joint pain, neuropathy of the arms and hands, and debilitating fatigue–as well as anxiety and difficulty concentrating.

A relatively new classification in medical literature, diagnosis of cervicogenic dizziness frequently leaves patients wondering how the neck can possibly cause dizziness. Neck muscles and joints contain tiny receptors whose job it is to continuously send signals to the brain, eyes, and inner about head orientation: specifically, where the head is in relationship to the rest of the body. Should any aspect of this system malfunction, inaccurate information is sent to the brain, causing sensory confusion; the physiological condition we refer to as “dizziness” or “light-headedness.”

There are a few things patients can do to try and minimize the sensation:

Good Posture: Keep your screens (TV, Phone, Computer) at eye-level. Keep your body moving, stand up to walk around and stretch as opposed to sitting in the same spot for a prolonged period. Be sure to sit straight with shoulders back.

Stretching: I alluded to this before but it bears repeating. Gentle neck stretches are key when trying to loosen neck muscles. Yoga and Pilates can be useful when done correctly. If you are a beginner, attend classes first until you can get the correct form down pat. Have a heat pack ready as well!

Professional Support: Massage Therapy, Chiropractic Care, Physical & Occupational Therapy have all been considered useful by patients in the same boat. Treatment involving Baclofen has been known to help as well.

Vitamins, Minerals & Supplements:
Calcium & Magnesium taken together have been known to relieve muscle spasms as well as working potassium into your diet.