If it wasn’t for your natural balance system, you wouldn’t be able to move without falling over. A series of signals passing to your brain from your eyes, inner ear, skin and muscles dictate balance.
If you begin to experience sudden loss or balance to dizziness go to see your doctor. You will need emergency medical care if you experience:
- Pains in your chest
- Tingling or numbness in your face or limbs
- Problems walking
- Weakness in your arms or legs
- Falling over
- Slurred speech
- Blurred vision
- Severe stiffness in your neck
- Sudden loss of hearing
- Head trauma
- High fever
Often dizziness and balance difficulties have other causes. It is important to find out what these are. Your physician should check you over. He or she will pay particular attention to problems associated with balance issues. In some cases, you will need medical or surgical treatment. In other cases you may need balance rehab.
What is Dizziness?
Millions of American adults bouts of dizziness experience. It is one of the most common complaints for seeking medical advice. If you are suffering from loss of balance it can make you feel weak and disoriented. It may seem as though the room is spinning. This sensation is vertigo. You may not be able to stand. You may also feel nauseous, anxious or faint.
Causes of Dizziness
Dizziness has several causes including:
- A bacterial or viral infection
- A foreign object in your ear
- Sudden blood pressure changes
- Heart problems
- A perforated ear drum
- Ménière’s disease
- Head injury
- Multiple sclerosis
- Certain medications
- Visual disorders
What is Vertigo?
Vertigo is a form of dizziness that causes a sensation of spinning. Sudden movements can make it worse. It can sometimes make you feel nauseous or make you vomit. If you are experiencing vertigo, your doctor may recommend balance testing. This determines where in the body the balance system is disrupted. It will also show what changes are happening to balance functions. You can get these tests at your doctor’s office. You’ll need to visit an audiology office or clinic for other testing.
Some Common Dizziness Disorders
Benign Paroxysmal Positional Vertigo (BPPV): This causes a rapid, intense bout of vertigo. It comes on when you suddenly move your head. You can experience it when you turn over in bed, or stand up quickly. You may also experience it when looking up. The cause is not known. It may be linked to head injury, ear infection or aging.
Ménière’s disease: This is a disorder in the inner ear’s fluid balance. It causes dizziness and ringing in the ears. Ears may also feel blocked. The cause is not known.
Labyrinthitis: This is inflammation of the inner ear causing dizziness.
Vestibular neuronitis: This is a viral infection of the vestibular nerve.
Postural hypertension: Low blood pressure can cause dizziness when you change positions. It is more common in seniors. It may also cause fainting, blurred vision and nausea.
Anxiety: Panic disorders are a common cause of dizziness.
How you Can Help Your Doctor Make a Diagnosis
If you suffer from dizziness, go to see your doctor. Take these with you to help him or her work out your treatment plan.
- Write a list of symptoms for your doctor.
- Bring any copies of reports of previous hearing or balance tests.
- Bring a list of any medications you are currently taking.
- Describe exactly how and when you experience dizziness.
What is Balance Rehabilitation Therapy?
Epley and the Semont Maneuvers involve physical motions to improve symptoms. Your doctor will move your head and neck to remove debris from your ear canal. Patients also suffering from emotional disorders, may also undergo cognitive behavioral therapy.