Dizziness is a condition that describes a range of sensations, including feeling faint, lightheaded, weak, woozy, or generally unsteady. Dizziness is characterized by a false sense of the surroundings spinning or moving, even when they are perfectly still. Dizziness, as a stand-alone condition, troubles many people, & is one of the primary reasons people visit doctors on a regular basis. Although dizziness doesn’t significantly affect a patient’s life & isn’t a life-threatening condition, it does cause a lot of problems with a patient’s everyday life. It’s also important to note that dizziness isn’t a condition in itself, but a symptom of some underlying condition. In this article, we are providing the top 10 signs of Dizziness.
Dizziness treatment depends on the exact underlying cause of the illness & the detailed diagnosis carried out by your doctor. Dizziness is also one of the many signs of Vertigo, & is one of the most common Vertigo markers in patients who are yet undiagnosed.
Vertigo patients feel a variety of sensations, & may use the following phrases to describe their symptoms:
- A sense of motion or spinning even when there is none
- A feeling of lightheadedness or feeling faint
- Feeling unsteady or experiencing a loss of balance
- A floating feeling, wooziness, or feeling heavy-headed
Dizziness patients might also notice that these symptoms worsen with changes in the position of their head & any movements of the body. The dizziness experienced by patients may also be extremely intense that they need to lie down immediately, or at other times, occur along with nausea. Depending on the exact condition that causes the dizziness, your dizziness symptoms may come & go, or last for a longer time period.
However, if you experience dizziness along with any of the following symptoms, then you need to consult your doctor immediately:
- A Sudden, severe headache
- Chest pain
- Difficulty in breathing
- A sensation of numbness or paralysis in the arms or legs
- Fainting, especially if it occurs frequently
- Double vision; seeing two or more while you’re experiencing dizziness
- A Rapid or irregular heartbeat
- Confusion about everyday things &/or slurred speech
- Stumbling or difficulty walking; inability to keep a straight face
- Ongoing vomiting, severe nausea along with dizziness
- Sudden Seizures
- A sudden change in hearing or temporary hearing loss
- Facial numbness or weakness in the facial muscles
Causes & reasons for dizziness
Dizziness has multiple causes that include a variety of conditions such as inner ear issues & disturbances, motion sickness, & any medication effects. Certain underlying health conditions like poor blood circulation, any injuries, or ongoing infection, can also be the reasons for dizziness. Dizziness is extremely subjective to the patient dealing with it, & the specific way it makes you feel coupled with your specific triggers can provide a more exact reason for your dizziness.
Inner ear issues that can be the reasons for dizziness:
The body’s balance system is an intricately put together mirage of senses working together in coordination to achieve perfect balance.
These senses include:
- Eyes, that help determine your exact position in space & keeps a check on your movement,
- Sensory nerves, which help transport information regarding your position & body movements to the brain through a system of nerve endings,
- Inner ear, which has a variety of sensors that detect gravity & any back-and-forth motion
Vertigo is the feeling of a false sensation of spinning or moving even when your surroundings are perfectly still. It is caused by issues in the Vestibular system that leads the sensory receptors to send out conflicting signals to the brain about your position in space & any accompanying movements. This inconsistency in the perceived signals & the actual ones creates the dizzy, nauseous, & lightheaded feeling that Vertigo patients often feel.
- Benign Paroxysmal Positional Vertigo (BPPV): BPPV is the most common type of Vertigo that causes short periods of intense dizziness, nausea, motion sickness, & lightheadedness. BPPV symptoms are one of the earliest signs of Vertigo, & are triggered by any sudden changes in the position of your head or body. These triggers could be any sudden head movement, turning over in bed, or rolling to one side. Any sudden blow to the head can also be a trigger for BPPV Vertigo.
- Infections: When the Vestibular Nerve gets infected by a virus or a bacteria, it leads to Vestibular Neuritis, which causes sudden, intense dizziness symptoms which are constant in nature. If you also experience sudden hearing loss along with dizziness, then your symptoms can be a sign of labyrinthitis.
- Meniere’s Disease: Meniere’s Disease is caused by an excessive amount of fluid buildup in the ear, causing a feeling of pressure & fullness in the ears. It causes sudden, long-lasting signs of Vertigo, & is one of the many reasons for dizziness.
- Migraine: Migraines are related to sudden episodes of severe Vertigo & intense dizziness, causing signs of dizziness & Vertigo. Migraine patients may feel chronically dizzy, lightheaded, & nauseous, & may also experience light & sound sensitivity.
Aside from these common reasons for dizziness, there are other causes of dizziness too. Certain circulation problems that can lead to dizziness are a sudden drop in blood pressure & poor blood circulation.
Besides these signs of dizziness, there are other dizziness causes too. These include:
- Neurological problems like Parkinson’s Disease & Multiple Sclerosis
- Certain medications like antidepressants, anti-seizure drugs, sedatives, & tranquilizers, etc.
- Anxiety issues
- Low iron levels, also called Anemia
- Low blood sugar, also called hypoglycemia
- Carbon Monoxide poisoning
- Excessive exposure to heat & dehydration
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Although dizziness usually goes away on its own, certain cases might warrant special attention & remedy for dizziness. Dizziness treatment usually depends on the exact condition which is causing it. Depending on your exact diagnosis, your dizziness treatment may include medicines for dizziness & home remedies for dizziness.
Medications for dizziness
Medicines for dizziness might include:
- Water Pills: For the treatment of Meniere’s Disease, your doctor might prescribe certain water pills or diuretic pills to reduce the amount of fluid buildup in your inner ear. Water Pills lead to feelings of pressure inside the ear, thus causing signs of dizziness & Vertigo. Diuretic pills help reduce this fluid buildup thus relieving the patient of their symptoms.
- Anti-Nausea & anti-dizziness medicines: Certain medicines for dizziness help relieve the patient of their nausea & dizziness. These drugs include prescription medicines for dizziness like antihistamines & anticholinergics. However, many of these medications have dizziness as a side effect.
- Anti-anxiety medications: Certain anti-anxiety medicines for anxiety Diazepam(Valium) & alprazolam(Xanax) help reduce dizziness.
- Preventive medicines for dizziness: Certain medicines may prevent dizziness as an effect.
Therapies for dizziness
Certain head positions for Vertigo include:
- Head position maneuvers: Canalith repositioning maneuvers help train the body’s vestibular system to make up for the loss of balance experienced by the Vertigo symptoms. It includes exercises like the well known Epley Maneuver, which includes various head movements that target the misplaced particles inside the semicircular canal, & place them inside their original position inside the inner ear.
- Balance therapy: Your healthcare provider might make you practice certain balance exercises to train your body to be less responsive to the various movement stimulations. These therapies & exercises are grouped together as a part of Vestibular Rehabilitation. It is used for treating Vertigo caused by Vestibular Neuritis.
Certain lifestyle changes & home remedies for dizziness that help provide relief to the patients include avoiding using caffeine, alcohol, eating healthy, drinking enough fluids, getting enough sleep, & avoiding stress.
For certain unmanageable cases of Vertigo & dizziness, surgical procedures might be needed to help the patient get relief from their Vertigo.