The cause of Meniere’s is not well understood. But it’s hard to ignore its effects. Ringing in the ears, dizziness, vertigo, and hearing loss are all common symptoms of this disorder. Researchers aren’t really sure why, but for some reason, fluid can accumulate in the ears and this appears to be the underlying cause of Meniere’s disease.
So the question is: if a condition doesn’t have a discernible cause, how can it be treated? The answer is, well, complex.
What exactly is Meniere’s disease?
There’s a chronic condition that impacts the inner ear and it’s known as Meniere’s disease. Symptoms of Meniere’s will get worse as time passes, for many people, because it’s a progressive disease. Those symptoms may include:
Unpredictable bouts of vertigo: Unfortunately, there’s no way to tell when these episodes of vertigo will strike 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 manifests as a sensation of pressure in your ears and is medically known as aural fullness.
Hearing loss: In the long run, Meniere’s disease can cause a loss of hearing.
If you notice these symptoms, it’s crucial to receive a definitive diagnosis. For many people with Meniere’s, symptoms are intermittent. But as time passes, symptoms may become more regular and obvious.
Treatment for Menier’s disease
There is no known cure for Menier’s disease which is chronic and progressive. But that doesn’t mean there isn’t any way to treat it.
Some of the most common treatments include the following:
- Positive pressure therapy: There’s a non-invasive approach used when Meniere’s is particularly difficult to treat. It’s known as positive pressure therapy. In order to limit fluid accumulation, the inner ear is subjected to positive pressure. While positive pressure therapy is promising, the long-term benefits of this method have not been backed up by peer-reviewed research.
- Surgery: Sometimes, Meniere’s disease can be addressed with surgery. Normally, however, only the vertigo part of the disease is impacted by this surgery. Other Meniere’s symptoms will remain.
- Hearing aid: It might be time to try hearing aids if Meniere’s disease is progressing to the point where your ability to hear is failing. The advancement of your hearing loss won’t necessarily be slowed down by hearing aids. But it can help keep you socially active which can improve your mental health. Hearing aids can also help you control the symptoms of tinnitus in a number of ways.
- Rehabilitation: There are rehabilitation and physical therapy techniques that can help you maintain balance when Meniere’s disease is acting up. If you’re regularly dizzy or dealing with vertigo, this strategy may be warranted.
- Diuretic: Another kind of medication that your physician might prescribe is a diuretic. The idea is that reducing the retention of fluids could help minimize pressure on your inner ear. This medication is not used to treat extreme symptoms but instead is taken long-term.
- Steroid shots: Injections of specific kinds of steroids can temporarily help alleviate some Meniere’s symptoms, especially in regards to vertigo.
- Medications: Anti-nausea and anti-dizziness medications can be prescribed by your physician in some situations. If those particular symptoms manifest, this can be helpful. So, when a bout of dizziness occurs, medication for motion sickness can help alleviate that dizziness.
Find the best treatment for you
You should get an exam if think you may have Meniere’s disease. The development of Meniere’s disease might be slowed by these treatments. More frequently, however, they reduce the effect that Meniere’s will have on your day-to-day life.