The cause of Meniere’s is not well understood. But it’s difficult to dismiss its effects. Ringing in the ears, vertigo, dizziness, and hearing loss are all typical symptoms of this disease. Researchers aren’t really sure why, but for some reason, fluid can build up in the ears and this appears to be the root cause of Meniere’s disease.
So the question is: how can you address something that doesn’t appear to have an identifiable cause? The answer is, well, complicated.
What exactly is Meniere’s disease?
Meniere’s disease is a persistent disorder that affects the inner ear. Symptoms of Meniere’s will get worse as time passes, for many individuals, because it’s a progressive disease. Those symptoms may include:
Unpredictable bouts of vertigo: Regrettably, there’s no way to know when these episodes of vertigo will strike or how long they could last.
Tinnitus: The degree of this tinnitus may ebb and flow, but it’s not uncommon for those with Meniere’s Disease to have ringing in their ears.
Fullness in the ear: This is experienced as a sensation of pressure in your ears and is medically referred to as aural fullness.
Hearing loss: Meniere’s disease can cause hearing loss over time.
It’s critical 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 eventually, symptoms may become more regular and obvious.
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 common treatments include the following:
- Steroid shots: Injections of specific kinds of steroids can temporarily help relieve some Meniere’s symptoms, particularly when it comes to vertigo.
- Positive pressure therapy: There’s a non-invasive approach used when Meniere’s is particularly hard to manage. It’s called positive pressure therapy. As a way to minimize fluid buildup, the inner ear is exposed to positive pressure. Peer review has not, as of yet, confirmed the long-term advantages of this approach but it does seem encouraging.
- Surgery: In some cases, surgery is used to treat Meniere’s. Normally, however, only the vertigo side of the disease is impacted by this surgery. It won’t affect the other symptoms.
- Rehabilitation: When Meniere’s disease is flaring up, You can utilize certain physical therapies that can help with balance. This approach may be a practical strategy if you’re experiencing regular dizziness or vertigo.
- Medications: In some cases, your doctor will be able to prescribe anti-dizziness and anti-nausea medications. If those specific symptoms manifest, this can be helpful. For example, medications designed to help with motion sickness may help you feel less dizzy when an episode of vertigo takes place.
- Hearing aid: It might be time to try hearing aids if Meniere’s disease is advancing to the point where your ability to hear is faltering. The progression of your hearing loss won’t necessarily be slowed down by hearing aids. But it can help keep you socially engaged which can give a boost to your mental health. Hearing aids can also help you deal with the symptoms of tinnitus in numerous ways.
- Diuretic: Another form of medication that your physician may prescribe is a diuretic. The concept here is that the pressure in the inner ear can be minimized by decreasing retention of fluid. This is a long-term medication that you’d take rather than one to decrease acute symptoms.
Find the best treatment for you
You should get checked out if suspect you might have Meniere’s disease. Treatments for Meniere’s can sometimes reduce the advancement of your condition. More frequently, however, they reduce the impact that Meniere’s will have on your daily life.