by Joon Nah
updated July 17, 2020
Dizziness is one of the most common reasons why people see their doctors, and the odds certainly increase as you age. But is it a normal part of aging? Not quite.
One of the main areas that help us sense motion and position is located in our head and is called the vestibular system. This consists of the inner ear organ, the vestibular nerve and the centres in our brain that convert the nerve signals into useful information. Problems with any of these parts can cause dizziness.
Common vestibular causes include:
- Benign Paroxysmal Positional Vertigo (BPPV), which involves displaced calcium carbonate crystals that interfere with the normal movement of inner ear fluid.
- Vestibular Neuritis or Labyrinthitis, where the inner ear nerve is damaged from inflammation, typically due to a viral infection.
- Meniere’s disease, which results from abnormal inner ear fluid production and pressure and causes dizziness and hearing changes
- among dozens of other causes
Though these causes of dizziness can increase with age, they certainly do not affect everyone. Most of those affected can be treated successfully with full recovery. So, can dizziness increase as you get older? Absolutely. Is it a permanent problem that you have to live with? Absolutely not!
Joon Nah BScPT
Joon is a well-repsected physiotherapist in the Toronto and Burlington area. He has extensive experience in orthopaedics, vestibular rehabilitation and concussion therapy. He particularly enjoys trouble-shooting complex patient cases and his role as a mentor to other physiotherapists.
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