11 Effective Home Remedies for Vertigo

By Sabina Rebis, MD
Medically reviewed checkmarkMedically reviewed
August 19, 2022

Vertigo is a feeling of dizziness that happens when you’re still.

It’s not a condition itself but is a symptom of dysfunction in how the body processes sensory information. 

Some people may experience vertigo once or for a short period of time, while others may have it chronically.

Vertigo can occur from a dislocation of deposits that build up in the inner ear, head or neck injuries, Meniere’s disease, stroke, or vestibular neuritis. 

It can also be a symptom of neurological disorders or neurodegenerative disease.

Depending on the cause, vertigo responds to many types of home remedies. 

In this article, we’ll discuss 11 effective ways to treat vertigo at home, as well as when to see a medical provider.

Epley Maneuver

Sometimes called the Canalith repositioning maneuver, the Epley maneuver is a go-to strategy for most types of vertigo. 

It is especially useful for vertigo caused by benign paroxysmal positional vertigo (BPPV).

To do the Epley maneuver on your own:

  • Sit upright on a flat surface with a pillow behind you (ready to lie down on) and your legs stretched out in front of you.
  • Tilt your head 45º to the right and quickly recline and lay your head on the pillow.
  • Remain in this position for 30 seconds.
  • Slowly turn your head 90º to the left without raising your neck from the pillow.
  • Turn your body so you are completely on your left side.
  • Slowly return to the starting position.

You can repeat this three times in a row. 

It is natural to feel dizzy with each movement.

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Semont-Toupet Maneuver

The Semont-Toupet maneuver is not as well known or widely used as the Epley maneuver, but studies show that it might be just as effective

This maneuver may be better for people with reduced neck flexibility or stiff neck.

Here is how to perform the Semont-Toupet maneuver:

  • Sit upright on a flat surface with a pillow behind you (ready to lie down on) and your legs stretched out in front of you.
  • Lie down on your back, turning to your right. Turn your head to look to your left side, looking upward.
  • Quickly sit upright and turn to the left side, your head still facing the left. Your face is now looking at the ground.
  • Slowly return to the starting position.

Repeat up to 3 times as needed.

Foster Maneuver

The Foster maneuver is sometimes called the half-somersault. 

People find this less complicated to learn than the Epley or Semont-Toupet maneuvers.

Here’s how to do it:

  • Kneel and look up at the ceiling for a few seconds.
  • Tuck your chin so your head goes toward your knees until it rests on the floor. Stay in this position for about 30 seconds or until the feelings of vertigo stop.
  • Turn your head toward the direction of the ear most affected by the feelings of dizziness. Wait another 30 seconds.
  • While on your hands and knees, quickly raise your head to level with your back. Keep your head in the 45º tilt position. Remain in this position for 30 seconds.
  • Now quickly raise your head so that it is fully upright but still turned toward the side with the dizzy feelings.
  • Slowly stand up.

Rest for 15 minutes before trying the maneuver again. 

You may need to do it a few times before you find relief.

Brandt-Daroff Exercise

The Brandt-Daroff exercise is easy to do at home for vertigo and can be done alone, but do not plan on driving or being active for a while after performing it because it can temporarily increase the feelings of dizziness.

To do this exercise:

  • Sit on a flat surface (like a bed), with your legs dangling.
  • Turn your head as far to the left as it can comfortably go. Lay your head and torso down toward the right (so you are looking away from the spot where you lie down). Your legs should remain still. Stay in that position for at least 30 seconds.
  • Sit up and turn your head back to the center.
  • Repeat the exercise on the opposite side by turning your head as far to the right as you can, then lying down on the left side.

You can do five repetitions of this exercise at a time. 

Repeat it up to three times per day, twice a week.

Ginkgo Biloba

Gingko biloba extract is an herbal supplement. 

Research in 160 patients with vertigo found that it was as effective as an antihistamine medication used to treat the condition, but gingko biloba was more tolerated and had fewer side effects.

Gingko biloba is available at health food stores and online. 

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) does not regulate dietary or herbal supplements like gingko biloba for efficacy, which means it does not conduct trials to prove how effectively they work. 

Supplement manufacturers are responsible for doing safety testing and ensuring that the products contain what they say they do, but this is not always the case. 

A medical provider can recommend a trustworthy supplement brand.

Sleep

A lack of sleep can trigger feelings of vertigo

Sleeplessness and stress can be a cause of a first time episode of vertigo. 

If you are having an episode of vertigo, taking a nap may be beneficial.

Ensuring that you get adequate sleep on a regular basis is also important to prevent episodes of vertigo.

Fluids

Dehydration can trigger vertigo. 

Drink 6-10 glasses of water daily to ensure adequate hydration levels. 

You may need more fluids if it is extra hot or humid or you sweat a lot. 

Electrolyte beverages can also help ensure that your electrolyte minerals are balanced.

Vitamin D

Inadequate vitamin D levels can be associated with BPPV, the most common type of vertigo.

Not many foods contain high levels of vitamin D, so if your levels are low or deficient, you may need a dietary supplement. 

A medical provider can check your levels with a simple blood test.

Smaller amounts of vitamin D are also found in foods like fortified milk, fortified orange juice, canned tuna, and egg yolks.

With no sunscreen, you can get vitamin D from the sun, but only when you are outside (not through a window). 

You also have to have enough skin exposed to direct sunlight for the body to make vitamin D. 

Because of skin cancer risks, it is not advisable to try to get all of your vitamin D from sun exposure. 

Additionally, the sun’s rays are only direct enough for most of the U.S. latitude from May through September. 

People with more melanin in their skin may also not make vitamin D as efficiently. 

Other factors, like age, body weight, and genetics that control vitamin D receptors in the gut can play a role in a person’s vitamin D status.

Acupuncture

Research shows that acupuncture can also help with vertigo and dizziness

While the benefits of acupuncture appear promising, much of the evidence is low quality, so larger, better-designed studies are needed to further understand its effects.

Regular Exercise

Regular physical activity helps the body in many ways, including in how it translates sensory information. 

Physical fitness  can also improve posture and balance. 

Getting regular exercise can improve weak muscles and may have an impact on vertigo symptoms.

People who treat vertigo often recommend yoga as a therapeutic exercise since it naturally focuses on and improves balance and core strength. 

Tai chi is another activity that can help with vertigo since it involves steady movements that strengthen balance and flexibility.

Herbal Remedies

In addition to gingko biloba, anti inflammatory properties of ginger may help reduce the dizzying effects of vertigo.

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When to See a Medical Provider

Vertigo can be an upsetting symptom, but in most cases, it resolves on its own without treatment.

If you have frequent episodes of vertigo or it is a new symptom that does not seem to be related to a common cause, such as sleep deprivation , see a doctor or medical provider. 

In most cases, the underlying cause is not serious, but vertigo that does not resolve can sometimes be a sign of a neurological or neurodegenerative problem.

How K Health Can Help

Did you know you can get affordable primary care with the K Health app?

Download K to check your symptoms, explore conditions and treatments, and if needed text with a healthcare provider in minutes. 

K Health’s AI-powered app is HIPAA compliant and based on 20 years of clinical data.

Frequently Asked Questions

How do you get rid of vertigo fast?
Vertigo can happen for many reasons, but in many cases, you can help get rid of the dizzying symptoms by doing some simple at-home exercises. The Epley and the Foster maneuvers are two positioning exercises that can help reset the brain’s perception of balance.
What is the best home remedy for vertigo?
There are many home remedies available to treat vertigo, including positioning or stretching, taking a nap, and being properly hydrated. If you experience vertigo for the first time, see a medical provider who can recommend the best course of action for fast relief.
What can I drink to get rid of vertigo?
Dehydration can contribute to vertigo, so be sure to drink enough water. Consuming warm ginger tea may also help address symptoms.
K Health articles are all written and reviewed by MDs, PhDs, NPs, or PharmDs and are for informational purposes only. This information does not constitute and should not be relied on for professional medical advice. Always talk to your doctor about the risks and benefits of any treatment.

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Sabina Rebis, MD

Dr. Sabina Rebis is a board certified family medicine physician with over 5 years of primary care and urgent care experience.