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Vertigo & Dizziness

West Shore ENT & Allergy

Otolaryngology & Allergy Specialists located in Norton Shores, Muskegon, Grand Haven, Fremont, & Ludington, MI

Episodes of vertigo and dizziness are normally brief and go away on their own. If they return or they’re severe enough to make you fall, it’s time to see the exceptional team at West Shore ENT & Allergy. They determine the reason for your vertigo and dizziness and develop customized treatment for the underlying problem. To schedule an appointment, call one of the five conveniently situated offices in Norton Shores, Grand Haven, Fremont, Ludington, and Muskegon, Michigan, or use the online booking feature.

Vertigo & Dizziness Q & A

What is the difference between vertigo and dizziness?

Dizziness refers to the sensations of lightheadedness, loss of balance, and disorientation. When you have vertigo, you feel as though you or your surroundings are spinning. Vertigo is a type of dizziness, but the two conditions are caused by different things.

What causes dizziness?

Several parts of your body work together to maintain your balance. Problems in any part can lead to dizziness, but a few of the top causes include:

  • Inner ear infections
  • Ear disorders
  • Migraines
  • Allergies
  • Irregular heart rhythm
  • Low blood sugar
  • Medications

Everyday things like stress and dehydration can also make you dizzy.

What causes vertigo?

The spinning sensation of vertigo is triggered by head movement and is often accompanied by other symptoms like:

  • Headache
  • Ringing in your ears
  • Feeling disoriented
  • Involuntary eye movements
  • Loss of balance

The two types of vertigo each has its own cause:

Peripheral vertigo

Peripheral vertigo develops from a problem with your vestibular nerve or inner ear. The most common type of vertigo — benign paroxysmal positional vertigo (BPPV) — is caused by loose calcium crystals floating in the fluid-filled tubes in your ears that are responsible for your balance. The crystals affect the fluid’s movement, which leads to vertigo.

Central vertigo

Central vertigo starts in your central nervous system when a disease or injury affects the area of your brain that regulates balance. Patients with central vertigo can also experience difficulty swallowing and double vision (diplopia).

How are dizziness and vertigo treated?

The doctors at West Shore ENT & Allergy do diagnostic tests like balance tests to determine the cause of your dizziness or vertigo. When they have a diagnosis, the first step is to treat any underlying health condition that’s contributing to your dizziness and vertigo.

Your West Shore ENT & Allergy doctor develops a treatment plan that can include one or more treatments, depending on the cause of dizziness or vertigo. 

The Epley maneuver is the first line of treatment for BPPV. You could need medications to reduce symptoms or to suppress inner ear activity. Many patients also benefit from balance therapy or vestibular rehab.

If your symptoms don’t improve with treatment, you might need a procedure to disable the balance function in the affected ear. Following this procedure, the healthy ear takes over to restore normal balance.

If your dizziness or vertigo keep coming back or get worse, call West Shore ENT & Allergy or schedule an appointment online.