Feeling dizzy can be caused by several different reasons. Sometimes the cause can be a serious underlying problem or simple trauma to the head. In the case where the cause is an underlying problem, it may be necessary to treat the cause in order to stop the episodes. Some common causes include old age, stroke, and trauma to the head. The first diagnostic step that will be done is to perform a CT or MRI scan.
The doctor will ask the patient to describe the symptoms they are getting on the first meeting with the patient. It would be hard to know what to say if one does not keep a record of the symptoms. Thus, one should maintain a record of symptoms and their subsequent triggers. The first time of the feeling to appear should also be noted together with its progress.
It is important to note any kinds of medication that one has used in the past to treat the problem. After gathering this information, the doctor will perform a physical examination. The examination will involve checking how the patient walks and maintains balance. The doctor will also examine if the nerves of the central nervous system are working properly. Hearing and balance tests may be administered for further diagnosis.
Some of the diagnostic tests that will be performed include eye movement testing, head movement testing, posturography, and rotary-chair testing. In eye movement testing, the path of the eyes is observed when one is tracking a moving object. Eye motion test may also be administered. This test involves placement of warm or cold air or water in the ear canal.
A head movement test is administered if dizziness is caused by benign paroxysmal positional vertigo. This head movement test is called Dix-Hallpike maneuver. It is performed to verify diagnosis. Posturography is done in order to determine the part of balance system is affected. One has to stand on a platform bare foot so that their ability to maintain balance under different conditions is tested.
There are several treatments for dizziness, including water pills, anti-nausea medications, migraine preventive medicine, anti-anxiety medications, and medications for reducing dizziness. Water pills are given to patients with Meniere disease, and they are usually coupled with low-salt diet. This combination should reduce frequency and severity of episodes.
Several therapeutic options are also available for treating this condition. They include head position maneuvers, balance therapy, and psychotherapy. Balance therapy is comprised of various exercises that assist with making the balance system less sensitive to motion. Psychotherapy is more useful to individuals who experience dizziness because of anxiety disorder.
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