What is dizziness?

Dizziness is a condition, where one feels off balance or that the surroundings are spinning. It is a common symptom that becomes more frequent with age. Around a third of people at age 65 and above experience dizziness from time to time. Dizziness if often accompanied by nausea and a sensation of fainting.


What are the symptoms of dizziness?

There are numerous diseases that has dizziness as a symptom. These are the most common:

  • Virus on the vestibulocochlear nerve: Sudden dizziness, where it feels as if the one’s surroundings are in motion. The condition is often accompanied by nausea and vomiting and can persist for several days
  • Position-dependant dizziness: Certain positions trigger dizziness, due to a disturbance in the inner ear
  • Meniere’s disease: Bouts of dizziness, accompanied by a weakened ability to hear, tinnitus, nausea, and vomiting, persisting for 1-2 hours
  • Psychological causes: Anxiety, tension headache, and other psychological causes can trigger dizziness
  • Heart disease: Arrhythmia can trigger dizziness, due to a reduced supply of oxygen to the brain
  • Anaemia: Causes dizziness, tiredness, weakness, shortness of breath, and arrhythmia during light physical activity
  • Alcohol: Alcohol affect the centre of balance in the inner ear, causing one to feel dizzy
  • Medicine: Certain types of medication can have dizziness as a side effect
  • Low blood pressure
  • Old age: For example, weakened sight, changes in blood pressure, disturbance of the centre of balance in the ear


What are the causes of dizziness?

Dizziness can be caused by a myriad of conditions. The sense of balance is predicated on three senses: the vestibular system in the inner ear and cerebellum, spatial awareness (proprioception), and our sight. When one or more of these senses are weakened, it is possible that the sense of balance is similarly weakened. This is, among other things, the reason why it is more difficult balancing on one leg with our eyes closes, since the sense of sight has been removed.


What are the treatment options for dizziness?

Dizziness is treated by treating the underlying cause for the condition. In every instance, one should avoid alcohol since this can exacerbate the symptoms. If you are suffering from acute onset of dizziness, persistent dizziness, or is bothered by dizziness in your everyday life, it is recommended that you contact your physician to discover the source. When the physician has determined the cause of your dizziness, the physician can counsel you on how best to treat the condition. If a specific type of medication you are receiving for another ailment is causing dizziness, it might be possible to substitute it for another type of medication, which does not trigger dizziness.

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