You may feel light-headed, unsteady, woozy, or like the floor is moving. Dizziness is frequently described differently by those who suffer from it. That’s not surprising, since dizziness doesn’t emerge from a single cause.
Vertigo is sometimes thought of as a synonym of dizziness, though vertigo’s characteristic symptom is a sensation of spinning, as though the world is moving around you. You may feel dizzy when you have vertigo, and you can also feel dizzy without it.
While occasional, short-duration dizziness is normal, frequent or constant episodes may be a symptom of another disorder. When you’re experiencing an unexplained issue with dizziness or vertigo, or if your symptoms interfere with daily living, schedule a visit to Lawrence Otolaryngology Associates for an evaluation.
Reasons behind your dizziness
When your dizziness includes spinning sensations and indicates vertigo, the most common reason is a disorder called benign paroxysmal positional vertigo (BPPV). This can arise from a bump to the head, whiplash, or other sudden movement of your head, but in many cases, a cause may not be identified.
Vertigo can also accompany Ménière’s disease, a chronic condition affecting fluid buildup in the inner ear. Benign tumors called acoustic neuromas that surround the auditory nerve can also cause dizziness with vertigo.
It’s possible to feel dizzy but without the accompanying spinning sensation that defines vertigo. Blood circulation can be associated with dizziness. A rapid decrease in blood pressure could cause feelings of faintness or lightheadedness. This is usually temporary and isolated, such as after you get up too quickly.
If you have chronically poor circulation, related dizziness may also be a chronic issue.
Medications are sometimes behind dizziness. When you’re taking medications to lower your blood pressure, you could experience dizziness as a result of the drug, perhaps a sign that it’s lowering blood pressure too much. Other drugs that can create dizziness as a side effect include:
- Anti-seizure medications
Dizziness could be a sign of low blood sugar, particularly if you use insulin to control diabetes. Low iron levels, called anemia, could cause dizziness as well as pale skin and fatigue.
Simply getting older can increase the frequency of dizziness, which can also be a symptom of neurological conditions, such as multiple sclerosis and Parkinson’s disease. Patients who suffer from some anxiety disorders may feature dizziness among their symptoms.
Overheating and dehydration could be a cause of dizziness, particularly in the summer months when both conditions can sneak up on you.
Complications of dizziness
Though dizziness and vertigo rarely result from life-threatening conditions, loss of control or balance can be a direct threat to your health from falls or other accidents. Driving or operating heavy equipment could be hazardous if your symptoms come on without warning.
Dizziness often traces back to your vestibular system and the balance organs within your inner ear. That makes the specialists at Lawrence Otolaryngology Associates your best choice for examination and treatment.
Contact the most convenient office in Lawrence or Ottawa by phone to schedule a personal consultation. Both dizziness and vertigo can be treated to reduce or eliminate their effects on your life. Call for an appointment today.