Dizziness

South Valley Neurology

Neurologists and Pediatric Neurologist located in Morgan Hill, CA & San Jose, CA

Dizziness and vertigo occur in people of all ages, affecting up to 18% of children and 35% of adults. While a single bout of dizziness may not represent an underlying medical problem, recurrent, severe, or ongoing dizziness should be evaluated by the experienced team at South Valley Neurology. With their expertise and onsite diagnostic technology, you’ll receive a timely diagnosis and customized treatment to relieve your dizziness. Request an appointment online or call the office in San Jose, California, for pediatric care or the office in Morgan Hill, California, for older children and adult appointments.

Dizziness Q & A

What is the difference between vertigo and dizziness?

Dizziness is a general term referring to sensations such as feeling faint or lightheaded, loss of balance, disorientation, and vertigo. Vertigo is a type of dizziness that gives you the sense that you or your surroundings are spinning around.

What causes dizziness?

To maintain your balance, your body relies on multiple body systems, such as your muscles, inner ear, and sensors throughout your body. Problems in any of these systems, as well as systemic health conditions, can cause dizziness.

Some conditions that lead to dizziness are:

  • Inner ear infection
  • Ear disorders
  • Migraine
  • Neurological conditions
  • Certain medications
  • Traumatic brain injury
  • Low blood sugar
  • Irregular heart rhythm

You can also become dizzy if you’re dehydrated or overheated when you’re outside on a hot day.

What causes vertigo?

Vertigo develops due to problems in your ear or central nervous system. An ear infection or inner ear disorder may cause vertigo. Benign paroxysmal positional vertigo (BPPV) is the most common ear problem responsible for vertigo.

BPPV occurs when small calcium crystals in your inner ear break away and end up floating in the fluid-filled semicircular canals. The semicircular canals normally maintain your balance. When the crystals affect fluid movement, you develop vertigo.

Vertigo that begins in the central nervous system may be caused by:

  • Migraines
  • Concussion
  • Stroke
  • Multiple sclerosis
  • Acoustic neuroma 

Neurodegenerative disorders such as dementia and Parkinson’s disease can also lead to vertigo.

Does vertigo cause other symptoms?

The sensation that you or your surroundings are spinning is the primary symptom of vertigo. However, you may also experience:

  • Headaches
  • Ringing in your ears
  • Feeling disoriented
  • Balance problems
  • Involuntary eye movements

Vertigo is often triggered by rapid head movement, such as rolling over in bed.

How are dizziness and vertigo treated?

After learning about your symptoms, reviewing your medical history, and performing a thorough examination, your South Valley Neurology provider may perform diagnostic testing. South Valley Neurology is equipped with the latest technology so you can get advanced testing onsite, including computerized dynamic posturography.

The best treatment for your dizziness or vertigo depends on the underlying cause of the problem. The list of possible treatments is long due to the numerous possible causes. As one example, BPPV is often treated by putting your body through controlled movements that force the crystals out of the fluid.

If you develop dizziness or vertigo, expert treatment is available at South Valley Neurology. Call or schedule an appointment online today.