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symptom

Dizziness

Symptom

Remember as a kid when you used to spin really fast to make yourself dizzy on purpose? Those days are long gone. Now, if you’re dizzy—meaning the room’s spinning, or you feel faint, lightheaded, woozy, or like you’re floating—you probably want that feeling to stop as soon as possible. These sensations can happen when you walk, stand up, or move your head. Or they can just appear out of nowhere, without any identifiable trigger. Dizziness is pretty common. In fact, 4 in 10 people will visit their doctor because they're freaked out about a dizzy spell. Fortunately, dizziness can be no big deal. Or it can be caused by any number of conditions, including inner ear problems, neurological disorders, anxiety disorders, anemia (too few red blood cells), low blood sugar (aka hypoglycemia), or even overheating or dehydration. Autoimmune diseases, such as lupus, Sjogren’s syndrome, and rheumatoid arthritis (RA), can impact the inner ear and cause dizziness. It also shows up in the later stages of Lyme or with mold exposure. It’s a good idea to tell your practitioner if you experience dizziness regularly—or even occasionally. Get emergency medical care if you are suddenly dizzy and also have other symptoms, such as chest pain, difficulty breathing, numbness in your face, arms, or legs, or rapid heartbeat. These symptoms might signal a stroke or a heart attack. If your dizziness is mild, one trick is to sit down as soon as you feel an episode coming on. Also, stay hydrated and avoid caffeine, alcohol, tobacco, and excess salt. Practicing certain balance exercises—in particular, ones that make your body less sensitive to motion—can also help. And remember, when you’re dizzy, it’s okay to slow down. Yes, we all live busy lives, but dizziness doesn’t care about your hustle, and tagging out is often the fastest way to feeling better!

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