Overall, living a healthier lifestyle decreases our chances of developing illnesses and health problems. Sleep, exercise, and diet are all areas of focus. But a lesser-discussed area of general lifestyle health is our connection to nature. Specifically, grounding our bodies to the natural world.
In layman’s terms, grounding is simply taking off your socks and shoes and walking on the Earth barefoot. You don’t need to go full hippie mode and walk around the grocery store without any shoes on. Rather, going to a park, a beach, or anywhere without concrete or asphalt and walking around barefoot.
Studies have shown that grounding reduces inflammation, improves circulation, regulates the sleep cycle, boosts the immune response to sickness and illness, and reduces stress.
That’s quite a bit of benefit from simply kicking off the shoes and walking in the grass. Who wouldn’t spend 30-60 minutes a day barefoot outdoors if it meant that it greatly improved our general health?
How Does Grounding Affect Dizziness?
While there isn’t any research directly studying the relationship between grounding and the vestibular system, we can make a few conclusions by logical connection.
Stress is a major trigger for vestibular issues. For example, a 2016 study found that people with anxiety disorders were about two times more likely to develop benign paroxysmal positional vertigo (BPPV) than people without anxiety disorders. Furthermore, one of the top five triggers for both Vestibular Migraine and Meniere’s Disease is stress.
Our vestibular (balance) system is deeply connected to other body systems. Therefore, in periods of stress, our bodies are in this heightened state of fight or flight which impacts how the rest of the body functions. Our balance system receives mixed input from the rest of the body telling us to panic; something is wrong.
Because grounding reduces cortisol (the stress hormone), we can logically say that grounding reduces stress-triggered dizziness episodes.
Additionally, sleep quality affects vestibular function. Sleep is our time for recovery. Thus, if we aren’t sleeping right then, our bodies aren’t recovering right. Without the right recovery, we’re more prone to the effects of our health dysfunctions. In particular, this study found that Vestibular Migraine is most impacted by sleep disturbances.
Because grounding improves oxygen circulation in our blood, this helps us fall asleep quicker and maintain deep sleep. Therefore, we can connect grounding to reducing our dizziness triggers.
Spending time in nature is one of the most overlooked health practices. But the data is showing that finding even just half an hour to get outdoors and put your bare feet on the Earth can greatly improve overall health.
Connecting with nature makes us feel better. And when we feel better, we live better.
Getting the Help You Need
We want to clarify that grounding is not going to cure you of your balance disorder. This is just one tool in the arsenal of lifestyle modifications that can make a difference in your dizziness.
But when lifestyle modifications like grounding are made in addition to a well-rounded Vestibular Rehabilitation Therapy program, that’s when we can make strides in eliminating your dizziness symptoms.
If you feel lost and are unsure why you are dizzy, then please reach out to us.
The Dizzy & Vertigo Institute specializes in all things vestibular-related. We have the proper equipment and Vestibular Audiologists who pinpoint and treat the source of your problems.
You can reach us at (310) 683-4679 or by filling out our contact form.
We look forward to helping you back to a dizzy-free life!