Dizziness can hit you at any time and be temporary or last for days to weeks. The feeling is like you're on a boat that is spinning out of control. It's hard to keep your balance and you may even feel like you're going to pass out. You may have also heard this called “vertigo.” It isn't an uncommon complaint heard by doctors and they find themselves often having to prescribe medicine for dizziness.
If you are suffering from dizziness on a frequent basis and you find it affecting your daily activities, there are things you can do. This article explains more about dizziness, the symptoms and helpful treatments. While medication can help the symptoms, people often find it to be an ongoing issue. Read on for more information.
List of Best Medicine for Dizziness by Causes
Dizziness can be caused by a number of things, some serious. This is why it is important to visit your doctor for a full evaluation. Some of the possible causes and medications include:
Labyrinthitis occurs from inflammation in the inner ear. The most common causes are an ear infection or seasonal allergies. Symptoms include dizziness, spinning sensation, nausea, vomiting, hearing loss, and ringing in your ears. Medications for this condition include:
Compazine is an anti-nausea medication and works by blocking the dopamine receptors in the body to help relax the nervous system. This can relax the nerves in the inner ear until the inflammation subsides.
- Dosage and Instructions: 5 mg three times daily and may increase gradually up to 30 mg daily. Do not take with alcohol. Do not drive while on this medication if it makes you sleepy.
- Side-Effects and Precautions: Side-effects include drowsiness, dry mouth, stuffy nose, weight gain, trouble urinating, constipation, agitation, insomnia, and high blood pressure. Ask your pharmacist for a full list of side-effects.
Antivert is an antihistamine medication that depresses the central nervous system, blocks dopamine, and helps reduce allergic reactions by blocking H1 histamine.
- Dosage and Instructions: 25 mg to 100mg total daily dosage in divided doses. You can take this medication with or without food.
- Side-Effects and Precautions: Side-effects include feeling tired, dry mouth, fast heartbeat, and problems urinating. Avoid driving if this medication makes you sleepy.
Prednisone is a steroid that can help relieve inflammation in the inner ear that leads to dizziness.
- Dosage and Instructions: 20 mg per day tapered down over 6 days. Take with food to prevent stomach upset.
- Side-Effects and Precautions: Side-effects include excess hunger, swelling, increased blood sugar, osteoporosis, decreased adrenal function. Do not stop taking suddenly, medication must be tapered to prevent complications with adrenal glands.
Hypotension is another name for low blood pressure. When your blood pressure drops you can feel faint or dizzy. Medicine for dizziness caused by low blood pressure usually treats the underlying blood pressure issue and not the actual dizziness. Here are some medications used for this:
The drug Midodrine helps to relieve dizziness from low blood pressure by stiffening the walls of the arteries and blood vessels to raise the blood pressure.
- Dosage and Instructions: 10 mg three times daily while awake. Drug should only be used during awake, daytime hours. Do not take after 6 p.m.
- Side-Effects and Precautions: Side-effects include tingling of fingers, trouble urinating, rash, headache, flushing, and confusion. Monitor blood pressure while on this medication.
Fludrocortisone is a steroid that works on the adrenal glands above the kidneys and can help raise low blood pressure.
- Dosage and Instructions: 0.1 mg daily. It is advised to increase salt intake and fluids to help increase blood pressure.
- Side-Effects and Precautions: Side-effects include acne breakouts, increased blood sugar, osteoporosis, weight gain, and possible seizures. Do not get live vaccines while on this medication due to immune suppression.
This drug increases norepinephrine in the body to constrict the blood vessels and raise blood pressure. It is a new FDA approved prescription medicine for dizziness caused by dysautonomia or feeling like you will pass out when standing up.
- Dosage and Instructions: 100 mg three times daily. Last dose must be taken at least 3 hours prior to bedtime to prevent hypertension during sleep.
- Side-Effects and Precautions: Side-effects include hypertension during sleep or laying down, feeling hot, confusion, congestive heart failure, and allergic reactions. Use with caution in patients that take medications for Parkinson's.
3. Meniere's Disease
This is a mysterious disease of the inner ear that causes dizziness. It is thought to be autoimmune or genetic and comes on suddenly anytime between age 20 to 50 years. There is no cure but it is treatable.
This medication blocks the nerve in the middle ear or vestibular canal to prevent dizziness from fluid build-up. It can help relieve the symptoms of Meniere's disease.
- Dosage and Instructions: 25 mg to 100 mg daily every six to twelve hours.
- Side-Effects and Precautions: Side-effects include; constipation, fatigue, dry mouth, and headache. Caution should be used if you have trouble urinating or asthma.
Researchers have found a role with sodium in the body and Meniere's. This diuretic blocks the sodium channels in the kidneys and helps lower fluid pressure in the vestibular canal.
- Dosage and Instructions: 12.5 mg to 50 mg once a day.
- Side-Effects and Precautions: Side-effects include high blood calcium, low blood pressure, low potassium, fatigue, and headache. Do not use if allergic to sulfa drugs.
4. Heart Attack
A heart attack with dizziness is a medical emergency. If you think you are having a heart attack and experiencing dizziness, call 9-1-1 right away. Once you have been evaluated by a physician, some of the medicine for dizziness with heart attack include:
Dizziness with a heart attack can be caused by lack of blood flow. Aspirin helps thin the blood and open up blood vessels.
- Dosage and Instructions: 81 mg daily to keep blood thin. Take with food to avoid upset stomach.
- Side-Effects and Precautions: Side-effects include easy bruising, headache, stomach upset, asthma attacks, and easy bleeding. Do not use with other blood thinning agents unless directed by a physician.
Opens up blood vessels to increase blood flow to the heart and body. Lowers blood pressure.
- Dosage and Instructions: 75 mg to 150 mg daily.
- Side-Effects and Precautions: Side-effects include increased dizziness, diarrhea, fatigue, and upset stomach. Use with caution if you have dehydration.
Dizziness with a stroke is usually caused by reduced blood flow to the brain. A stroke is a medical emergency. If you think you may be having a stroke, call 9-1-1 right away. Once you are evaluated and given emergency treatment, the doctor may use the following medicine for dizziness:
The effects of stroke can cause a fair amount of anxiety and dizziness due to changes in the brain. Valium can depress the central nervous system to help relieve these symptoms.
- Dosage and Instructions: 2 mg to 10 mg every 6 to 12 hours.
- Side-Effects and Precautions: Side-effects include weakness, fatigue, lowered blood pressure, headache, and depression. Caution in patients with respiratory disorders, sleep apnea, and seizure disorders. Do not stop taking suddenly.