Are you suddenly feeling dizzy? As if everything around you is rotating? Does it seem like you will fall or faint due to the feeling of lightheadedness?
Why does it happen? Why do we feel dizzy sometimes?
Dizziness is a more casual term to refer a feeling of imbalance. Vertigo is the more technical (medical!) term to describe the feeling of imbalance or spinning. Know more about these in our post here.
Let’s analyse the effects, cause and treatment options for dizziness.
What is dizziness by the way?
Dizziness or disequilibrium of the body is a result of a health condition that needs treatment. Since the medical condition affects the balancing function of the body, we feel dizzy or unsteady. So, practically, we should look and treat the pathological issue that is causing us giddiness.
Nature of dizziness:
The degree of dizziness varies significantly from person to person. Some feel dizzy once in a while, and some feel continuous spinning sensation. For some, their dizzy spell may last for few seconds, and in worst cases, some suffer for days, months and years!
The frequency, intensity, discomfort, and the cause of a vertigo episode- differ from person to person.
When feeling unsteady, we risk a fall, an injury, loss of confidence and may restrict our movement altogether.
Effects of dizziness:
Physically, one may experience any of these indications accompanying a vertigo attack:
- Visual disturbance or difficulty in focusing during head movement.
- A recurrent Headache
- Reduced or loss of hearing ability
- Involuntary eye movements
- Tinnitus or ringing in the ear
- Motion sickness
- Pressure or pain in the ear
The effects of dizziness go beyond physical. It has far outreaching psychological implications.
- Loss of confidence
- Loss of interest in life
- Restriction of movements
- Reduced cognitive faculty
- Inability to focus on thoughts or activities
- Feeling helpless
- Feeling depressed
However mild the dizzy spell is, you must let a medical practitioner evaluate your health situation thoroughly and conduct tests to diagnose the problem.
Causes of dizziness:
It is astonishing when you realise that literally, anything can cause dizziness! Dizziness may be caused by innocuous everyday things for reasons which are more sinister and dangerous. Hence it is important to diagnose the cause at the earliest so that the condition is controlled.
- Side effect of medication
- Hot water bath
- Jerky movements
- Loud noises
- Low BP
- Low blood sugar
- Nerve compression in the neck / spinal chord/brain/ inner ear
- Viral infection
- Genetic disorder
- Vestibular problems
- Issues in the central nervous system
- Psychogenic concerns
The list is not exhaustive. Among all the reasons two are most prominently observed; they are Vestibular problem and Brain (or central nervous system) issues.
Vestibular Issues leading to dizziness or vertigo
The inner ear is responsible for 2 functions – hearing & maintaining the balance of the body. The vestibular region is in the inner ear that helps the body to maintain its balance by assessing the gravitational force and transmits signals to the brain. The vestibular region is a complex network of sensory nerves, blood vessels, fluid, and movement detecting otoliths. Any problem arising in the inner ear leads to balance disorders and causes dizziness.
Some of the medical conditions affecting vestibular region that cause vertigo are
- Meniere’s disease
- Vestibular neuritis
- Vestibular migraine
- Vestibular paroxysmia
- Perilymph fistula
Some of the medical conditions affecting brain or central nervous system that lead to vertigo are
- Multiple Sclerosis
- Low BP
- Low blood sugar
- Respiratory issues
Keep a close watch or maintain a journal describing the nature and frequency of your dizzy spells for a week or two and discuss with your doctor. It is better to give more information to the doctor about the time and nature of your vertigo episodes to help him diagnose the cause correctly.
Depending on the cause, dizziness treatment can be followed.
Vestibular rehabilitation therapy and vertigo exercises work wonders to control vertigo attacks and restore balance.
Vertigo suppressant medications are available and recommended by the doctors if your dizzy symptoms are severe.
Surgery and other medical procedures are conducted depending on the severity and complexity of the medical condition.
Quick insights on how to deal with dizziness
- Seek medical intervention if you are experiencing repeated vertigo episodes accompanied by headache/nausea/fatigue/ unconsciousness/twitching or numbness in any part of the body or any other unusual signs.
- Provide as many details as possible to the doctor to arrive at a correct diagnosis of your dizziness problem.
- Make suitable lifestyle changes
- Make proper dietary changes after consulting the doctor.
- Include more water, fresh fruits and vegetables in your daily intake.
- Don’t take drugs or alcohol. They worsen your condition.
Consult our vertigo treatment experts to understand how to deal with a sudden dizzy bout and get appropriate treatment.