Are can and could be the same

Psychiatry, Psychosomatics & Psychotherapy

Vestibular system

The information that our sense of balance receives and processes from the optical, proprioceptive and vestibular system in the central nervous system (CNS) is supplied to it, among other things, by the organs of balance (vestibular organ), which are located in the inner ear in the temporal bone, one on the right and one on the left. It is a small "apparatus" with a large and a small vestibule and three arched corridors. These are partly filled with lymph fluid and are each at right angles to one another - much like the three sides of a cube that meet in one of its corners. On the inner walls there are highly sensitive tactile or sensory hairs, each of which is connected to a nerve. With every change of position of the head, no matter how small, the fluid moves in the semicircular canals. This stimulates the sensory hairs, which pass these stimuli on to the center of balance and the cerebellum. These semicircular canals are responsible for the perception of rotational movements of the head (or the body including the head) in space. If a person rotates around their own axis for a long time and suddenly stops, the fluid in the organ of equilibrium continues to rotate for a while, creating the impression of an opposite rotation.

Optical system

The information provided by the vestibular system is supplemented or compared with the stimuli that the eyes pick up and send to the brain.

Proprioceptive System

In addition, the receptors of the joints and muscles continuously transmit information about the position of the arms and legs, but also all other parts of the body, and thus help to regulate the statics of our body. Part of this proprioceptive system are also the pressure sensors in the skin, which tell our brain what posture we are in, what surface and at what speed we are moving.

Problems such as dizziness arise when the information arriving in the CNS is or appears to be contradictory and therefore does not match properly. Of course, they also arise when correct information arrives and the central switching point in the brain cannot process it properly due to functional disorders. The former can happen, for example, when someone sits under the deck of a ship in wind force seven and reads a book that they are holding in their hands. The organs of balance and the sense of touch constantly report that the body is swaying in time with the waves. The eyes, however, have fixed the pages of the book, which appears motionless because it moves synchronously with the body, and as a result reports to the brain: everything is calm. This is where contradicting statements come together that cannot be correctly interpreted.

Vegetative complaints with dizziness

It is no coincidence that disturbed sensory perception and physical complaints are so closely linked and sometimes difficult to distinguish. Because the nuclei of the equilibrium nerve are located in the brain stem next to the nuclei of the vagus nerve. The latter supplies, among other things, the stomach, heart and lungs. How close the connections are between the vagus nerve and the equilibrium nerve is shown by the fact that nausea is a regular result of vertigo, but that conversely, nausea emanating from the stomach can also cause dizziness. The same applies to other vegetative complaints.