The cause of Meniere’s isn’t really understood. But it’s hard to dismiss its effects. Ringing in the ears, vertigo, dizziness, and hearing loss are all common symptoms of this disease. Symptoms of Meniere’s disease appear to come from a buildup of fluid in the inner ear, but scientists aren’t really sure what causes that buildup to begin with.
So here’s the question: how can you treat something that doesn’t seem to have a discernible cause? It’s a complicated answer.
What exactly is Meniere’s disease?
Meniere’s disease is a persistent disorder that impacts the inner ear. Symptoms of Meniere’s will get worse over time, for many individuals, because it’s a progressive disease. Those symptoms could include:
Unpredictable spells of vertigo: Sadly, when these bouts of vertigo will occur and how long they may last can’t be predicted.
Tinnitus: It’s fairly common for people with Meniere’s disease to have ringing in the ears or tinnitus, which can range from mild to severe.
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 lead to hearing loss over time.
It’s critical that you get an accurate diagnosis if you’re experiencing these symptoms. For many individuals with Meniere’s, symptoms are irregular. But as the disease progresses, the symptoms will likely become more consistent.
Treatment for Menier’s disease
Meniere’s disease is a progressive and persistent condition which has no known cure. But that doesn’t mean there aren’t any treatments.
Some of the most prevalent treatments include the following:
- Surgery: In some cases, Meniere’s disease can be addressed with surgery. Typically, however, only the vertigo part of the disease is affected by this surgery. It won’t affect the other symptoms.
- Steroid shots: Some symptoms of Meniere’s, particularly vertigo, can be temporarily alleviated with injections of specific steroids.
- Diuretic: A diuretic is another medication option that may be prescribed by your physician. The idea is that reducing the retention of fluids could help minimize pressure on your inner ear. This is a long-term medication that you’d take instead of one to decrease severe symptoms.
- Medications: Anti-nausea and anti-dizziness medications can be prescribed by your physician in some cases. This can help when those specific symptoms manifest. So, when a bout of dizziness happens, medication for motion sickness can help alleviate that dizziness.
- Positive pressure therapy: There’s a non-invasive approach employed when Meniere’s is particularly difficult to treat. It’s called positive pressure therapy. This treatment involves exposing the inner ear to positive pressure as a way to limit fluid accumulation. While positive pressure therapy is encouraging, the long-term benefits of this method have not been borne out by peer-reviewed studies.
- Rehabilitation: When Meniere’s disease is acting up, You can utilize certain physical therapies that can help with balance. This approach could be a practical strategy if you’re experiencing regular dizziness or vertigo.
- Hearing aid: It might be time to get 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 benefit your mental health by keeping you socially engaged. There are also numerous ways hearing aids can help treat tinnitus.
The key is finding the treatment that’s best for you
You should get an exam if think you might have Meniere’s disease. Treatments for Meniere’s can sometimes reduce the progression of your condition. But these treatments more frequently help you have a better quality of life despite your condition.