No one’s quite sure what causes Meniere’s disease. But it’s difficult to overlook its impact. Some prevalent symptoms of this affliction are dizziness, vertigo, ringing in the ears, and hearing loss. Scientists aren’t really sure why, but for some reason, fluid can build up in the ears and this seems to be the root cause of Meniere’s disease.
So the question is: how can you deal with something that doesn’t seem to have an identifiable cause? The answer is, well, complex.
What exactly is Meniere’s disease?
There’s a persistent affliction that affects the inner ear and it’s called Meniere’s disease. For many individuals, Meniere’s disease is progressive, meaning symptoms will get worse over time. Here are some of those symptoms:
Unpredictable bouts of vertigo: Sadly, when these episodes will strike and how long they may last can’t be predicted.
Tinnitus: It’s relatively common for individuals with Meniere’s disease to have ringing in the ears or tinnitus, which can range from mild to severe.
Fullness in the ear: This symptom is medically called aural fullness, the feeling of pressure in your ear.
Hearing loss: Eventually, Meniere’s disease can cause a loss of hearing.
If you experience these symptoms, it’s necessary to get an accurate diagnosis. For many individuals with Meniere’s, symptoms are irregular. But as the disease advances, the symptoms will most likely become more consistent.
How is Meniere’s disease treated?
There is no known cure for Menier’s disease which is persistent and progressive. But that doesn’t mean there aren’t any treatments.
Some of the most prevalent treatments include the following:
- Positive pressure therapy: When Meniere’s disease is especially challenging to manage, this non-invasive method can be employed. Positive pressure therapy is the medical term for this therapy. This treatment entails subjecting the inner ear to positive pressure in order to limit fluid buildup. Peer review has not, so far, confirmed the long-term benefits of this approach but it does seem promising.
- Diuretic: Another type of medication that your physician may prescribe is a diuretic. The idea is that reducing the retention of fluids could help minimize pressure on your inner ear. This is a long-term medication that you’d take instead of one to decrease severe symptoms.
- Hearing aid: As Meniere’s disease advances and your hearing loss gets worse, you might want to try a hearing aid. Generally, a hearing aid won’t necessarily impede the progress of your hearing loss. But it can help keep you socially engaged which can give a boost to your mental health. There are also a number of ways hearing aids can help treat tinnitus.
- Surgery: In some cases, surgery is used to treat Meniere’s. Normally, however, only the vertigo part of the disease is impacted by this surgery. It won’t affect the other symptoms.
- Steroid shots: Injections of specific types of steroids can temporarily help relieve some Meniere’s symptoms, especially when it comes to vertigo.
- Medications: Anti-nausea and anti-dizziness medications can be prescribed by your doctor in some situations. If those particular symptoms appear, this can be helpful. So, when an episode of dizziness happens, medication for motion sickness can help alleviate that dizziness.
- Rehabilitation: When Meniere’s disease is acting up, You can employ certain physical therapies that can help with balance. If you’re constantly dizzy or dealing with vertigo, this strategy might be warranted.
The key is getting the treatment that’s right for you
If you suspect you have Meniere’s disease, you should get evaluated. Treatments for Meniere’s can sometimes slow the progression of your condition. But these treatments more frequently help you have a better quality of life despite your condition.