Causes of Dizziness
Vertigo is a symptom that you are suffering from dizziness. It starts from a sudden or temporary change in the “vestibular system”. The vestibular system is the balance structures in your inner ear. These structures sense the movement and changes in your head position.
So you have vertigo due to your vestibular system being affected.
And how is vertigo caused? The following are the possible causes:
- Inflammation in the inner ear: Due to inflammation you will have the feeling on constant vertigo that may last for several days. You may also experience nausea, vomiting and difficulty in maintaining balance.
- Meniere’s disease: This is when there is an en excessive build- up of fluid in the inner ear. Vertigo is triggered by it, along with fluctuating hearing loss, ringing and a feeling of fullness in the affected ear.
- Vestibular migraine: A migraine is more than a simple headache disorder. And vestibular migraines often trigger episodes of vertigo and other types of dizziness.
- Benign paroxysmal positional vertigo (BPPV): This is the most common cause of vertigo. It is difficult to identify the trigger of BPPV. Most of the time BPPV is association with a minor blow to the head.
- Acoustic neuroma: This is a non-cancerous growth on the vestibular nerve. This never is the connection between your inner ear and the brain. Symptoms general include hearing loss, dizziness and imbalance.
Feeling of faintness may be caused by:
- A drop in blood pressure
- Insufficient blood flow from the heart
Loss of Balance may be caused by the following:
- Problems related to your inner ear (vestibular system)
- Sensory disorders which affect your vision and nerve damage in your legs.
- From joint and muscle problems. For example osteoarthritis.
- Neurological conditions like Parkinson’s disease.
- Side effects of medicines. Anti-seizure drugs, tranquilizers and sedatives may possibly induce a loss of balance.
There are 2 types of dizziness causes
Causes of dizziness sometimes related with an ear condition. A simple way for your doctor to distinguish between ear-related dizziness and dizziness due to other causes is to ask if it occurs only when you are upright, or even when you’re lying down:
• If the dizziness only happens when you’re upright, the cause is probably not related to the ear.
• If the dizziness sometimes happens when you’re lying down, the cause is usually an ear condition.
It’s a good idea to keep a diary of your dizziness, recording when and where you experience the problem.
Lightheadedness has many causes, including:
• Illnesses such as the flu or colds. Home treatment of your flu and cold symptoms usually will relieve lightheadedness.
• Vomiting, diarrhea, fevers, and other illnesses that cause dehydration.
• Very deep or rapid breathing (hyperventilation).
• Anxiety and stress.
• The use of tobacco, alcohol, or illegal drugs.
• A viral illness that affects the ear – this can cause a severe form of dizziness called vertigo
• Migraine (dizziness may come on before, after or even without the headache)
• Stress or anxiety, especially if you tend to hyperventilate (over-breathe)
Less common causes of dizziness
• A low blood sugar level, which is usually seen in people with diabetes
• A sudden fall in blood pressure when you suddenly sit or stand up, which goes away after lying down – this is know as postural hypotension and is more common in older people
• Dehydration or heat exhaustion – dehydration could be due to not drinking enough during exercise, or illness that causes vomiting, diarrhoea or fever
• Decreased blood flow in the back of the brain, called vertebrobasilar insufficiency – the blood vessels leading to the brain from the heart may be blocked (known as atherosclerosis)
• any severe illness or disease that affects the whole body
• recreational drugs or excess alcohol (either binge drinking, or long-term alcohol misuse)
• certain types of prescription medicine, such as antidepressants or blood pressure medication
• a heart rhythm problem, such as atrial fibrillation (a fast, irregular heartbeat)
• carbon monoxide poisoning
A more serious cause of lightheadedness is bleeding. Most of the time, the location of the bleeding and the need to seek medical care are obvious. But sometimes bleeding is not obvious (occult bleeding). You may have small amounts of bleeding in your digestive tract over days or weeks without noticing the bleeding. When this happens, lightheadedness and fatigue may be the first noticeable symptoms that you are losing blood. Heavy menstrual bleeding also can cause this type of lightheadedness.
An uncommon cause of lightheadedness is an abnormal heart rhythm (arrhythmia), which can cause fainting spells (syncope). Unexplained fainting spells need to be evaluated by a doctor. You can check your heart rate by taking your pulse .
Many prescription and nonprescription medicines can cause lightheadedness or vertigo. The degree of lightheadedness or vertigo that a medicine causes will vary.