Balance Disorder- A Balance Disorder is a medical condition in which an individual has a sensation of lightheadedness or dizziness along with a sensation that the legs are about to give away and he/she is about to fall. There are various causes which may cause Balance Disorder like certain medications, underlying pathological conditions, or an inner ear dysfunction.
What Is Balance Disorder?
Balance Disorder as stated is a pathological condition in which there is a sensation of dizziness as if a person is about to fall. There may also be a room spinning sensation as if a person is in a moving boat even though the individual may be standing still. Balance Disorders are usually caused by some pathological conditions, medications, or an inner ear dysfunction called labyrinthitis.
What Are The Causes Of Balance Disorder?
Balance Disorders can be caused by certain viral or bacterial infections affecting the ears. They can also be caused due to head injuries or circulation abnormalities affecting the inner ear or brain. Balance Disorders also tends to develop with age. Certain medications can also case Balance Disorders. Medical conditions like arthritis or an eye muscle imbalance can also cause Balance Disorders; however, sometimes Balance Disorders can present themselves without any obvious cause.
What Are The Different Forms Of Balance Disorder?
Some Of The Forms Of Balance Disorders Are:
How Is Balance Disorders Diagnosed?
Balance Disorders are difficult to diagnose as they can be caused due to different reasons. To identify the root cause of a Balance Disorder, the affected individual needs to consult with an ENT physician. The ENT physician will conduct a series of tests like audiology testing to look for ear dysfunction, blood tests, ENG or Electronystagmogram test to look for any abnormality in eye muscle movements along with imaging studies of the brain. There is another test conducted for Balance Disorders called Posturography in which the patient is made to stand on a moving platform in front of a screen and the physician observes the movement of the patient's body with respect to the moving platform or the screen.
What Are Some Of The Symptoms Of Balance Disorder?
Some Of The Symptoms Observed For Balance Disorders Are:
- Sensation of the legs giving way and falling
- Fainting sensation
- Sensation as if in a boat
- Blurry vision
- Nausea or vomiting
- Alterations in blood pressure and heart rate
- Anxiety and panic attacks
What Are Treatments For Balance Disorder?
To begin treatment, it is imperative to find out the root cause of a patient's Balance Disorder like whether it is caused by a medication or an underlying pathological condition, so that the offending medication can be changed and the underlying condition can be treated. Some treatment options include use of medications, vestibular therapy to include head; body; and eye exercises, and in case if Balance Disorder is longstanding then alterations in home like fixing handrails etc.
How To Identify Balance Problem Or Balance Disorder?
In order to identify if an individual has a Balance Problem or Balance Disorder requiring medical attention, the answer to either one of the below mentioned questions should be a "yes."
- Is there a feeling of unsteadiness?
- Is there is a room spinning sensation?
- Is there a feeling as if sitting on a boat
- Is there a feeling as if one is about to fall
- Is there blurred vision?
- Is there a sensation of being about to pass out?