The cause of Meniere’s is not well understood. But the effects are difficult to ignore. Some prevalent symptoms of this disorder are dizziness, vertigo, ringing in the ears, and hearing loss. Experts 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 here’s the question: if something doesn’t have a discernible cause, how can it be managed? The answer is, well, complex.
Exactly what is Meniere’s disease?
There’s a persistent condition that affects the inner ear and it’s known as Meniere’s disease. Symptoms of Meniere’s will grow as time passes, for many individuals, because it’s a progressive condition. Those symptoms may include:
Unpredictable bouts of vertigo: Unfortunately, there’s no way to tell when these episodes of vertigo may occur or how long they will last.
Tinnitus: The severity of this tinnitus may ebb and flow, but it’s not unusual for those with Meniere’s Disease to have ringing in their ears.
Fullness in the ear: This symptom is medically referred to as aural fullness, the sensation of pressure in your ear.
Hearing loss: Meniere’s disease can lead to hearing loss over time.
It’s important that you get an accurate diagnosis if you’re experiencing these symptoms. Symptoms of Meniere’s disease can come and go for many individuals. But over time, symptoms may become more consistent and obvious.
How is Meniere’s disease treated?
Meniere’s disease is a progressive and persistent condition which has no known cure. But there are some ways to deal with the symptoms.
The following are some of those treatments:
- Rehabilitation: There are rehabilitation and physical therapy techniques that can help you preserve balance when Meniere’s disease is acting up. This approach may be a useful strategy if you’re experiencing regular dizziness or vertigo.
- Steroid shots: Injections of certain kinds of steroids can temporarily help relieve some Meniere’s symptoms, especially in regards to vertigo.
- Diuretic: Another type of medication that your physician could prescribe is a diuretic. The idea is that reducing the retention of fluids might help minimize pressure on your inner ear. This is a long-term medication that you’d use instead of one to minimize acute symptoms.
- Hearing aid: As Meniere’s disease advances and your hearing loss grows worse, you may want to get a hearing aid. Normally, a hearing aid won’t necessarily impede the progress of your hearing loss. But it can help keep you socially active which can give a boost to your mental health. Hearing aids can also help you control the symptoms of tinnitus in numerous ways.
- Positive pressure therapy: There’s a non-invasive technique used when Meniere’s is particularly challenging to manage. Positive pressure therapy is the medical name for this treatment. This therapy involves exposing the inner ear to positive pressure in order to limit fluid buildup. Peer review has not, as of yet, confirmed the long-term benefits of this approach but it does seem encouraging.
- Surgery: Occasionally, Meniere’s disease can be addressed with surgery. However, these surgical techniques will normally only impact the vertigo side of symptoms. It won’t affect the other symptoms.
- Medications: Anti-nausea and anti-dizziness medications can be prescribed by your doctor in some cases. This can be helpful when those particular symptoms occur. For instance, medications designed to help with motion sickness may help you feel less dizzy when a bout of vertigo takes place.
Get the correct treatment for you
You should get an exam if suspect you might have Meniere’s disease. The advancement of Meniere’s disease may be slowed down by these treatments. More frequently, however, they reduce the effect that Meniere’s will have on your daily life.