A feeling of everything spinning around for a moment is how most people describe their dizziness experience. Feeling lightheaded and dizzy at times may be just a momentary feeling that passes away with a little rest, or could be an indication of an onset of serious illness. If you are experiencing momentary dizziness frequently, it would be best to make a note about its occurrence, time, duration, and after which activity it occurred. It would become easier for your doctor to understand the symptoms, and prescribe diagnostic tests and treatment accordingly.
Dizziness is a feeling that one experiences just before one is either about to faint or lose balance. Our sense of balance is controlled by the information processed by the brain, after it receives inputs from eyes, inner ears, and the nervous system. When this transmission does not occur smoothly, as is seen in inner ear infection, one experiences some disturbance, and tends to lose balance. Dizzy spells can be roughly categorized into lightheadedness and vertigo. Lightheadedness is momentary and the condition improves upon lying down or sipping on some cooling beverage. Vertigo on the other hand is a fainting spell, where one experiences spinning, whirling, or falling, generally accompanied by feelings of nausea and/or vomiting.
Although there are many causes of dizzy spells, symptoms are quite alike for all these causes. The symptoms include:
- Slight ringing in the ears
- Sensation of floating or swimming (heavy-headedness)
- Blurred vision
- Severe headache
- Severe and persistent dizzy spells and headaches combined
- Fainting, unsteadiness, spaciness, loss of balance
- A momentary drop in blood pressure
- Vertigo (false sense of spinning motion)
- Lightheadedness (the feeling of near fainting)
These spells are triggered by a momentary drop in blood pressure and blood flow to the brain. There are many causes of dizziness, and as to why we may experience lightheadedness or vertigo. Some of them have been listed below.
- Old Age
- Anxiety and stress
- Vomiting or diarrhea
- Very high fever
- Weakness and fatigue
- Viral infections that affect the air passages in the head or the inner ear.
- Over dosages of blood pressure medications
- Severe migraine
- Excessive smoking, drinking, and intake of illegal drugs
- Substance withdrawal symptoms
- Carbon monoxide poisoning or exposure to poisonous gases
- Abnormal heart rhythms, cardiac arrhythmia
- Rapid breathing, hyperventilation
- Too much exposure to heat or humidity
- Bleeding, internal or external
- Bleeding in the digestive tract
- Extremely heavy and frequent menstrual bleeding
- Low blood sugar or high blood pressure
- Sudden jerky movement like getting up quickly from a seated or lying position, orthostatic hypotension
- Injury to the head
- Inner ear disorders, benign paroxysmal positional vertigo (BPPV), Meniere's disease, labyrinthitis, etc.
- Visionary senses being impaired
- Cancerous growth behind the eardrum, or in the brain.
- Insufficient blood supply to the brain, due to a blood clot
Disclaimer: The information provided in this article is solely for educating the reader. It is not intended to be a substitute for the advice of a medical expert.