Over the course of their lifetime, some people may experience issues with vertigo, dizziness, instability, and other balance-related symptoms. These can be signs of other conditions, so it’s important to see a professional as soon as you experience any of these problems. The balance system is part of the inner ear, and as a result balance issues can sometimes be linked to hearing difficulty. A hearing screening is an important first step in the process of a balance evaluation, and can give your healthcare providers valuable information to help treat a potential balance disorder. If you’re experiencing vertigo, dizziness, or unsteadiness, contact our office to schedule a hearing screening.
What Is Causing My Unsteadiness?
Other causes of balance issues may include a head injury or ear infection. Low blood pressure can also lead to a feeling of dizziness if you stand up too quickly. Arthritis and eye muscle imbalances are also known to cause balance problems. Advancing age and even certain medications are other common causes of dizziness and balance problems.
How Are Balance Problems Treated?
First, we need to determine the cause of your balance issues, then we can recommend a treatment method.
For example, your balance issues may require a therapist to create a treatment plan especially for you. The plan would include balance retraining exercises to strengthen your balance, increase your energy levels and reduce stress.
There are also positioning procedures – specific head and neck movements that clear the inner ear canal and often improve balance issues.
Diet and lifestyle changes may also improve your balance problems. This includes quitting smoking, as well as reducing salt, caffeine, alcohol, nicotine and chocolate. Simple exercises, including walking and low-impact aerobics, may help, as well.
There are anti-vertigo and anti-nausea medications available to relieve balance disorders. The antibiotic gentamicin, or even corticosteroids, can be injected behind the eardrum for those with severe balance problems.
Surgery may be required to alleviate your balance problems if you have Meniere’s disease or another medical issue that can’t be remedied using less invasive methods.