Balance problems or dizziness are certainly life-altering conditions. These often stem from issues with the inner ear in what is called the vestibular system. Other reasons for dizziness include head injuries, severe headaches or migraines, heart disease, or blood pressure problems.
Balance Issues and Dizziness:
- Vestibular disorders
- Severe headaches and migraines
- Hypersensitivity to light and sound
Vestibular System Disorders and Vertigo
No one with a vestibular condition is alone. It has been estimated that in the United States, more than 69 million Americans over the age of 40 have some type of difficulty related to the vestibular system, the part of the inner ear and brain that help control balance and eye movement. Symptoms can include a spinning sensation known as vertigo, problems with coordination and balance, dizziness or lightheadedness, and visual and hearing disturbances. Regardless of the cause, any of these symptoms can severely limit activities of daily living.
Vestibular Migraines and Hypersensitivity to Light or Sound
Migraines are the third most common illness in the world, but they can also be a cause or symptom of vestibular dysfunction. If a headache affects balance, causes vertigo (frequently along with nausea and vomiting), blurred vision, or sensitivity to light or sound, it may be what is known as a vestibular migraine. Previously it was thought that migraines were merely vascular related, but now it has been recognized that there is a neural component as well.