HomeLifestyleHealth & FitnessSudden dizziness: these are the triggers and when to look for help

Sudden dizziness: these are the triggers and when to look for help

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There are many causes of dizziness attacks. Among other things, they can also be psychological. It is all the more important to have yourself examined as soon as possible in order to find the trigger. 

We’ll show you what they are and how you can prevent them.

It pulls the floor from under your feet, everything turns. Such a vertigo attack sometimes lasts hours or even days, but sometimes only a few seconds or minutes. Either way, it’s scary.

According to doctors, dizziness, which can also manifest itself in general unsteadiness to walk and stand and is often associated with nausea and visual disturbances, is one of the most common symptoms of illness.

It does not always have an organic cause. In such cases, the term “psychogenic dizziness” is often used.

Some experts speak of “functional dizziness” instead of “psychogenic dizziness”.

Psychological causes of dizziness

Stress and depression can trigger functional dizziness or persistent dizziness. Many who suffer from an anxiety disorder also have dizzy spells.

With functional dizziness, something is out of balance in life. Those affected often have a serious emotional conflict. For example after the death of a loved one or in stressful situations. In addition, there are sometimes depression or an anxiety disorder.

There are always special situations in which the vertigo attack occurs. This can be while traveling in an elevator, crossing a street or bridge or in the queue at the supermarket checkout. Those affected experience the dizziness situation as so threatening that they subsequently try everything to avoid the situation in which this dizziness occurs.

Let it be clarified at an early stage

“The avoidance attitude means that those affected listen more and more to themselves and become even more insecure,” says Professor Claas Lahmann, who is the medical director of the Clinic for Psychosomatic Medicine and Psychotherapy at the Freiburg University Hospital.

His advice: If you feel dizzy, see a doctor early and have them examined to see whether the seizures have organic causes.

Dizziness can be associated with diseases of the equilibrium organ in the inner ear, such as Meniere’s disease, or inflammation of the equilibrium nerve. It is sometimes a symptom of too low or too high blood pressure or cardiac arrhythmias. Certain drugs or alcohol can also cause dizziness.

Scary but manageable

If organic causes for the attacks can be ruled out and if functional dizziness is present, clarification comes first. You have to make yourself clear that the dizziness may be frightening for you in the respective situation, but you can take countermeasures, says neurologist Professor Frank Erbguth.

Relaxation techniques such as progressive muscle relaxation and autogenic training can help. Physiotherapy and lots of exercise in the fresh air can also help those affected by functional dizziness.

According to experts: “Under no circumstances should you avoid the situations in which the dizziness occurs.” 

Those affected should be aware of the situation. Anyone who has previously had a dizzy spell when crossing a public square and has therefore avoided the square should consciously cross it and be aware: There is absolutely no reason for me to be dizzy now.

Successes don’t necessarily come straight away. But you can work on it and maybe take a trusted person with you to be on the safe side. If such approaches don’t get you anywhere, behavior therapy may be the solution.

Image Credit: Getty

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