There are many parts of your body that work together to help you balance, including your eyes, inner ears, brain and the nerves in your feet and spine. When one of these body parts malfunctions, it can make you feel dizzy. It’s important to see a doctor for unexplained dizzy spells right away, as they can sometimes be a sign of a serious underlying condition.
During an exam, the doctor will review your symptoms and take your medical history. They may then order a variety of tests to determine the underlying cause. Some of the most common causes of dizziness are listed below.
Benign paroxysmal positional vertigo (BPPV) causes the sensation that you or the room around you is spinning. This usually worsens when you move your head.
Within the inner ears is a complicated system of canals filled with fluid. As you move your body, the fluid also moves, and signals are sent to the brain about how you’re oriented in space. If you have BPPV, it means that tiny calcium crystals have become dislodged and are floating around these canals, triggering incorrect signals about movement and orientation.
BPPV can be cured with a series of body movements called the Epley maneuver. The doctor will first walk you through these steps in their office, which can be repeated at home if your symptoms return.
Meniere’s disease is a condition that is not very well understood, but is suspected to be the result of fluid buildup in the inner ears. This triggers intense episodes of hearing loss, tinnitus (ringing in the ears), dizziness, nausea and ear pain. These episodes often leave people feeling exhausted.
Unfortunately, there is no cure for Meniere’s disease, though there are methods to manage symptoms. Your doctor may recommend hearing aids to treat hearing loss, white noise therapy to treat tinnitus and anti-nausea meds to help with dizziness. Lifestyle changes like a low-sodium diet can sometimes reduce symptoms.
There are many medications that list dizziness as a possible side effect, the most common of which include:
- Anti-seizure medications
- Blood pressure medicine
Talk to your doctor to weigh the pros and cons of your medication if it causes you to experience dizziness.
For more information or to schedule an appointment, call the experts at Pinnacle ENT Associates today.