Lightheadedness and Vertigo – Understanding the Different Between the Two

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Vertigo

One of the common reasons most adults visit doctors is Dizziness. Frequent dizziness attacks can keep you away from doing much of the things. The condition can be life-threatening if the attacks are regular and last longer. Dizziness treatment depends on the root cause of this problem.

However, the major reason for lightheadedness is when your brain is not receiving enough blood supply.

Difference between Vertigo and Lightheadedness

Lightheadedness

Lightheadedness is the condition when you are about to pass out or faint. You might feel slightly dizzy, but the condition is not so severe and does not make you feel that your surroundings are moving. Usually, lightheadedness goes away when you lie down. If the condition gets worse, then this could lead to fainting spell or almost fainting. Also, you might feel vomit or nauseated when you are lightheaded.

Lightheadedness is a much common feeling that may occur from time to time. It is not caused by any serious problem. It is mainly caused by a sudden drop in blood pressure and obstruction of blood flow to your head. This can occur when you get up suddenly.

This condition can be a symptom of the more severe condition, like a heart problem or stroke, internal bleeding, or a sudden shock. But this does not imply that you experience the problem every time you get up quickly. If you are experiencing any such conditions, you are less likely to have more dominant symptoms such as racing heart, chest pain, loss of speech, or change in vision.

Vertigo

Vertigo is a sensational feeling that you experience when your surroundings are moving when there is no real movement of surroundings. It is a condition when you feel like your head is whirling, spinning, tilting, or falling.

A person feeling severe vertigo would experience vomit or nauseated. In this situation he experiences trouble standing or walking and may even lose the balance. If the condition persists, then it can lead to falling.

Vertigo is mainly caused by inner ear problem. It arises when there is an imbalance in the vestibular system controlling our balance. The situation is caused when the brain is not receiving the correct instructions from the inner ear on how to balance the body. Know more here.

Causes of Dizziness

There can be two types of dizziness causes. Sometimes, this condition occurs due to an ear condition. More details here.

One simple way through which your doctor differentiates between dizziness if when you are lying down or in an upright position. If dizziness occurs when you are upright, then it is not occurring because of ear problem. But if the condition is caused when you are lying down, then the cause is a problem in ear condition.

Other common causes of Dizziness

  • Low levels of blood sugar level, which is mainly witnessed in diabetic patients.
  • A sudden reduction in blood pressure when you suddenly stand up or sit. This condition is known as postural hypotension and is highly common in elderlies.
  • Heat exhaustion or dehydration that can be because of drinking less water, or intense exercising, or any illness.
  • Consuming certain medicines, like antidepressants
  • A heart problem, like atrial fibrillation, or irregular heartbeat
  • Poisoning because of carbon monoxide

Causes of Lightheadedness

Some of the common causes of lightheadedness are:

  • Allergies
  • Diarrhea, vomiting, fever, and other diseases causing dehydration
  • Ailments like colds or flu
  • Stress and anxiety
  • Rapid breathing
  • Using alcohol, tobacco, or consuming illegal drugs
  • Condition when you hyperventilate
  • A migraine

Understanding the difference between the two conditions is of utmost importance before you seek medical assistance. It is because if you understand the difference completely, then only you would be able to avail adequate assistance and treatment.

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