Managing Dizziness

Description
Even after a thorough medical evaluation and a well developed treatment plan, dizziness can be a persistent and/or recurrent problem. You must have a clear understanding from your doctor or medical provider as to what to expect and when to seek further help. Make sure you know how to use the medications prescribed for this problem and what the expected side effects are. The following are helpful tips in learning how to live with your dizziness.

Helpful tips

  • Make sure you are keeping up with adequate fluid intake. You know you are well hydrated when you are drinking enough fluids to have to empty a full bladder at least 4-6 times a day.
  • Eat small, frequent meals. A bland diet may be helpful so that it does not aggravate commonly associated symptoms of nausea. If you are a diabetic you should monitor your blood sugar.
  • Change positions slowly. If you are lying in bed, sit up in bed slowly and keep your legs on the bed. When the dizziness resolves, then swing your feet over the edge of the bed and wait for 5 minutes. If you are still dizzy, wait longer or have someone assist you. Stand up next to the bed and hold onto something or sit back down if dizziness gets worse. When you feel steady enough to walk, then proceed to your planned destination.
  • If your gait is unsteady, obtain an assist device such as a cane, a four legged cane, a walker, or a wheelchair. Do not take any unnecessary risks which may result in falls.
  • Always ask for assistance if you are unable to walk by yourself even with the use of an assistive device.
  • If your dizziness occurs with movements of the head or eyes, make sure you are lying or sitting down when these episodes occur. Sometimes closing your eyes and holding your head still will help these episodes to resolve quicker. Keep a basin nearby in case you have nausea and vomiting.
  • Keep the room cool, dark, and quiet.
  • Take your medications as prescribed. If nausea or vomiting prevents you from taking your usual medications, seek medical assistance.

Discussion
You should have a clear understanding of the cause of your dizziness and your treatment plan after your initial visit with your medical provider. If your symptoms persist, are recurrent, become more frequent, or become more severe in intensity, you should make a follow-up appointment with your physician or medical provider.

Related topics
Discussing dizziness with your physician or medical provider
Moving from wheelchair to bed
Moving from bed to wheelchair