The cause of Meniere’s is not well understood. But it’s difficult to ignore its impact. Some common symptoms of this affliction are vertigo, dizziness, ringing in the ears, and hearing loss. Experts aren’t really certain 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 seem to have a discernible cause? The answer is, well, complicated.
What exactly is Meniere’s disease?
Meniere’s disease is a persistent disorder that affects the inner ear. For many patients, Meniere’s disease is progressive, meaning symptoms will grow worse over time. Those symptoms could include:
Unpredictable bouts of vertigo: Unfortunately, there’s no way to determine when these episodes of vertigo will occur or how long they will last.
Tinnitus: The intensity 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 known as aural fullness, the feeling of pressure in your ear.
Hearing loss: Eventually, Meniere’s disease can lead to a loss of hearing.
It’s important that you get the proper diagnosis if you’re experiencing these symptoms. Symptoms of Meniere’s disease can come and go for many people. But as time passes, symptoms can 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 manage the symptoms.
The following are some of those treatments:
- Diuretic: A diuretic is another medication alternative that may be prescribed by your physician. The idea here is that the pressure in the inner ear can be minimized by decreasing fluid retention. This medication isn’t used to manage acute symptoms but instead is taken long-term.
- Hearing aid: As Meniere’s disease progresses and your hearing loss grows worse, you might want to get a hearing aid. Typically, a hearing aid won’t necessarily impede the progress of your hearing loss. But it can benefit your mental health by keeping you socially active. Hearing aids can also help you deal with the symptoms of tinnitus in numerous ways.
- Steroid shots: Injections of specific types of steroids can temporarily help alleviate some Meniere’s symptoms, especially when it comes to vertigo.
- Positive pressure therapy: When Meniere’s disease is particularly hard to manage, this non-invasive strategy can be utilized. It’s called positive pressure therapy. This treatment entails subjecting the inner ear to positive pressure as a way to limit fluid accumulation. Peer review has not, so far, verified the long-term advantages of this approach but it does seem promising.
- Rehabilitation: When Meniere’s disease is flaring up, You can apply certain physical therapies that can help with balance. If you’re perpetually dizzy or experiencing vertigo, this strategy may be warranted.
- Surgery: Sometimes, Meniere’s disease can be addressed with surgery. However, these surgical techniques will typically only affect the vertigo side of symptoms. Other Meniere’s symptoms will remain.
- Medications: In some instances, your doctor will be able to prescribe anti-dizziness and anti-nausea medications. This can be helpful when those specific symptoms occur. For example, medications created to help with motion sickness may help you feel less dizzy when an episode of vertigo occurs.
Find the best treatment for you
You should get an exam if suspect you may have Meniere’s disease. The advancement of Meniere’s disease may be slowed by these treatments. More often, however, they reduce the effect that Meniere’s will have on your everyday life.