The neck is becoming increasingly more acknowledged as a potential source of dizziness. There is emerging evidence suggesting the upper neck can drive dizziness. This has come to be known as cervicogenic dizziness.


How do you identify it?

Cervicogenic dizziness is characterised by a vertigo type of dizziness. That is, the room spins or feels like it’s moving, rather than symptoms such as light headedness. Secondly, there should be a clear relationship to the upper neck – normally either stiff or tender to touch.


The challenging thing about dizziness/vertigo is there are many potential causes, such as issues with brain or inner ear. Generally speaking, the neck should be viewed as a diagnosis of exclusion. That is, you want to exclude these other more common sources first. An initial visit to the GP is optimal to manage these sources, while a physio assessment can also assist with ruling other potential sources (such as special inner ear problems).


So it’s coming from my neck. What now?

The next step is to undergo physiotherapy treatment. This will generally take the form of manual therapy designed to improve the mobility of the upper neck. There will also potentially be exercise involved to improve posture, strength, and flexibility in the area.


Posture and our habits are often a key driver that leads to aggravation in the neck. In particular, the ‘forward head posture’, where our neck protrudes forwards is a classic position that overloads the upper neck.Teaching the body to offload these areas by improving our posture is often a key component to fix the condition.


If you think this applies to you, please contact us to arrange an assessment.


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