Is dizziness a symptom of menopause?
Menopause takes place when periods have stopped and happens gradually over time; eventually getting pregnant will no longer be possible. This happens naturally to anyone born with female genitalia and normally occurs during middle age. It isn’t an illness or disease, but can cause symptoms due to the falling hormone levels in the body that occur at this time.
Dizziness around the time of the menopause is common. It may be related to problems that can occur around the menopause (such as hot flushes, anxiety or fatigue) or other medical problems such as ear or heart conditions. It’s a feeling that everything is spinning, a loss of balance or feeling as if you’re going to faint.
Symptoms of the menopause – including dizziness – may not require any treatment but if it’s needed then lifestyle changes and hormone therapy are sometimes helpful. There are also specific medical treatments available to help you deal with dizziness if required during the menopause.
What causes dizziness during the menopause?
Many of the causes of dizziness in the menopause are linked to the hormonal changes that happen in people with ovaries at this time. For up to several years before and just after menopause, levels of the hormones oestrogen and progesterone start to fall so that periods become irregular, and symptoms (such as hot flushes and dizziness) occur.
These hormone changes may trigger dizzy spells by affecting:
Your inner ear
The balance system of the body is found deep in your ears and hormone changes can affect this, causing a condition called benign paroxysmal positional
(BPPV). This causes intense dizziness (short episodes of vertigo) when you move your head in certain directions. It’s different from other causes of dizziness, such as inflammation of the inner ear, problems with the heart rhythm or rate, and panic attacks or anxiety.
How well you sleep
can wake you up at night and so disturb your sleep, but the menopause can also affect the quality of your sleep in general without having hot flushes. This may make it more likely that you then feel tired or exhausted the next day, with dizziness arising as a result.
Hot flushes can make sleep difficult, and if you don’t sleep well this can cause fatigue and dizziness during the day. There may also be other associated symptoms such as sweating or
and depression are common features of the menopause and may lead to severe stress and panic which can then cause dizziness. They may also cause severe tiredness that may make you feel dizzy.
Your blood sugar level
Because the hormone oestrogen plays a part in helping the body break down food into glucose (sugar), when levels of oestrogen vary the blood sugar levels alter. This means the body doesn’t receive a steady supply of energy and this may then cause tiredness and dizziness. Dizziness can also be a sign of
with other common symptoms being feeling thirsty all the time, peeing a lot, tiredness, losing weight and having repeated infections. If you have such symptoms, seek medical attention from your doctor.
This type of headache becomes more common during the menopause
and there’s a link between migraine and dizziness. If you get migraines before the menopause this may mean you’re likely to have them more frequently during it, including feeling dizzy more often. Vestibular migraines are a type of migraine where you experience a combination of vertigo, dizziness or balance problems, along with other migraine symptoms such as
or being sick, and sensitivity to light, sound or movement
Other possible causes of dizziness and the menopause include problems with both low and high blood pressure.
Find useful information on other areas of menopause with our complete Guide
When to see a doctor about dizziness
If you’re menopausal and experiencing dizziness regularly but have no other symptoms, you should speak with your doctor for advice about this. They may want to examine you and check your blood pressure, pulse, ears and neck to see if movement – or your body position – affects your dizziness. They may also refer you to a doctor who is an expert in ear problems.
Call an ambulance or see your doctor immediately if you’ve recently suffered trauma to your head or neck, or if you have other symptoms linked to dizziness such as:
- severe headache, neck pain or a high temperature – these can be symptoms of meningitis
- blurred or double vision, difficulty speaking or slurred speech, numbness or tingling of the face or other part of the body, drooping of the eye or mouth, or altered consciousness – these can all be symptoms of a
stroke(Video) Can menopause cause dizziness and light-headedness?
- chest pain, which can be a sign of angina or a , or a
- loss of hearing
- blacking out or fainting, which can occur as a result of conditions such as or aortic stenosis
low blood pressure
If any of these symptoms happen very suddenly seek immediate medical advice as they can be a sign of these or other conditions such as a cerebellar stroke.
How to deal with dizziness during menopause
This depends on the cause of the dizziness. If it’s caused by low hormone levels, Hormone Replacement Therapy (HRT) may be prescribed for you. Anxiety or depression can be treated with counselling or antidepressant treatment, blood pressure problems can be treated with medication to keep it stable, and inner ear disease can be treated using anti-dizziness tablets. If your doctor refers you to a dizziness specialist they may arrange tests such as an MRI scan, or ultrasound blood flow tests of the head and neck.
Several lifestyle tips may help reduce dizziness in the menopause. These include drinking plenty of water to prevent
, eating regular healthy meals to keep your blood sugar levels steady, speaking with family and friends about any anxiety and stress you may have, and standing up slowly after sleeping or sitting to avoid big changes in your blood pressure. Try to get enough sleep as this can help to reduce stress and worry, and activities such as
can improve your day-to-day balance.
If you have Benign Paroxysmal Positional Vertigo (BPPV) your doctor may try doing the Epley manoeuvre – a series of four movements of the head where, after each movement, the head is held in the same place for 30 seconds. This can be very effective but if it doesn’t work, your doctor may show you some exercises to do at home called Brandt-Daroff movements that involve a different way of moving the head.
What’s the outlook if I have dizziness in the menopause?
Symptoms linked to the menopause can improve after hormones settle down or if hormone replacement therapy is used. However, dizziness as a symptom in general tends to become more common with increasing age, and with the onset of other health problems that aren’t related to the menopause. This means that if you get dizziness that’s affecting your quality of life, or if it continues after the menopause, speak with your doctor about it.
Your health questions answered
What type of food should I eat to help prevent dizziness in the menopause?
Answered by:Dr Roger Henderson
To help keep your blood sugar levels steady and reduce dizziness, eat regular balanced meals made from lean protein, healthy fats, and complex carbohydrates such as vegetables and whole grains. Try to avoid snacks that are high in fat and sugar (such as biscuits and crisps) and eat fruit, nuts or protein-based snacks instead. Remember to always drink plenty of water during and between meals to prevent dehydration as well. It can also be helpful to keep a journal of when you feel dizzy to see if your symptoms are linked to eating.(Video) Nausea and dizziness during peri-menopause and menopause
- menopause isn’t an illness, it’s a normal event and may not cause any symptoms that affect your life
- if symptoms do occur, these are caused by the falling level of hormones in the body that happen at this time
- dizziness is one of the symptoms linked to the menopause
- simple lifestyle changes during the menopause can lessen or stop dizziness symptoms at this time
- hormone Replacement Therapy (HRT) can be very effective at reducing or preventing menopause symptoms, including dizziness
It's a feeling that everything is spinning, a loss of balance or feeling as if you're going to faint. Symptoms of the menopause – including dizziness – may not require any treatment but if it's needed then lifestyle changes and hormone therapy are sometimes helpful.How do you stop hormonal dizziness? ›
- drinking plenty of water.
- getting enough sleep.
- regular exercise.
- eating a balanced diet.
Women who are in the menopausal transition and postmenopausal periods are affected by a variety of symptoms, such as hot flashes, night sweats, vaginal dryness, depression, anxiety, and insomnia. Non-specific somatic symptoms are also common, including muscle and joint pain, tiredness, and dizziness.How long does dizziness last during menopause? ›
Menopause and mood swings
From start to finish, the process can take 2-10 years. During this process, a person is perimenopausal. According to the North American Menopause Society (NAMS), close to 23% of peri- and postmenopausal people go through mood swings.
- Snack between meals to keep your blood sugar levels stable. ...
- Drink plenty of water to prevent dehydration. ...
- Stand up slowly after you've been sitting or lying down. ...
- Reduce your daily stress.
Age-related degeneration of the inner ears and neck are key causes of dizziness in older people (1). Unfortunately, the increased risk for dizziness coincides with reduced function of the balance and postural muscles, so older people who have dizziness symptoms are more likely to fall than a younger person.Does menopause make head feel funny? ›
Headaches are more common around menopause due to fluctuating hormone levels. If you have had headaches in the past – especially if you get migraines – you may notice menopause headaches are more frequent or more severe.How do you know if dizziness is serious? ›
- Sudden, severe headache.
- Chest pain.
- Difficulty breathing.
- Numbness or paralysis of arms or legs.
- Double vision.
- Rapid or irregular heartbeat.
- Confusion or slurred speech.
- Neurological conditions. Some neurological disorders — such as Parkinson's disease and multiple sclerosis — can lead to progressive loss of balance.
- Medications. ...
- Anxiety disorders. ...
- Low iron levels (anemia). ...
- Low blood sugar (hypoglycemia). ...
- Carbon monoxide poisoning. ...
- Overheating and dehydration.
Vertigo is commonly caused by a problem with the way balance works in the inner ear, although it can also be caused by problems in certain parts of the brain. Causes of vertigo may include: benign paroxysmal positional vertigo (BPPV) – where certain head movements trigger vertigo. migraines – severe headaches.
With menopause, you expect hot flashes and night sweats. But lower hormone levels and other age-related changes may result in a host of more unusual symptoms as well. Menopause can cause surprising symptoms that include dry, itchy skin and a metallic taste in the mouth.Can hormones being off cause dizziness? ›
Huge. At a certain point in your life, your ovaries stop producing eggs. This causes the body to slow down the production of estrogen and progesterone. It's the lesser amount of these two hormones that lead to all kinds of menopausal symptoms, possibly including dizziness.
Postmenopause is the time after you've been without a menstrual period for 12 months. During this stage, menopausal symptoms, such as hot flashes, get milder or go away. People in postmenopause are at increased risk for osteoporosis and heart disease.Will my dizziness ever go away? ›
Dizziness often gets better without treatment. Within a couple of weeks, the body usually adapts to whatever is causing it. If you seek treatment, your doctor will base it on the cause of your condition and your symptoms. It may include medications and balance exercises.How do I know if my dizziness is heart related? ›
In most cases, dizziness associated with heart problems is accompanied by other symptoms. These may include shortness of breath, swollen extremities, frequent fatigue or chest pain. In the event heart disease is suspected, you will undergo one or more tests to get to the root of your problem.What is dizziness The most common symptom of? ›
Inner ear disorders are frequently the cause of feeling dizzy. The most common causes include benign paroxysmal positional vertigo (BPPV), Meniere's syndrome and ear infections. Benign paroxysmal positional vertigo (BPPV) makes you dizzy when you change your head or body position (like bending over).Is dizziness a symptom of high blood pressure? ›
Dizziness : While dizziness can be a side effect of some blood pressure medications, it is not caused by high blood pressure.Can menopause cause pressure in head? ›
Oestrogen is thought to cause blood vessels to dilate, while progesterone causes them to tighten. As the level of these hormones fluctuate, the blood vessels are constantly expanding and contracting. This causes pressure changes in the head, resulting in painful headaches.Can menopause make you feel weak and shaky? ›
Yes, menopause can make you feel weak, shaky and dizzy at times. This can result from various different symptoms that – either on their own or combined – can affect your health. For example, night sweats can stop you from sleeping and leave you feeling tired and irritable.Why do I feel like I'm losing my mind during menopause? ›
Changes in your hormones during menopause can impact your mental health as well as your physical health. You may experience feelings of anxiety, stress or even depression. Menopausal symptoms may include: anger and irritability.
“Red flag” symptoms should alert you to a non-vestibular cause: persistent, worsening vertigo or dysequilibrium; atypical “non-peripheral” vertigo, such as vertical movement; severe headache, especially early in the morning; diplopia; cranial nerve palsies; dysarthria, ataxia, or other cerebellar signs; and ...What are the 2 symptoms we felt when suffering dizziness? ›
Dizziness and vertigo often result from disorders that affect the inner ear or the parts of the brain involved in balance or from use of certain prescription drugs. Symptoms may include faintness, loss of balance, vertigo, difficult-to-describe light-headed or swimming sensations, or a combination.What health issues can cause dizziness? ›
Inner ear problems
Benign paroxysmal positional vertigo (BPPV) Ear infection (middle ear) Meniere's disease. Migraine.
Dizziness Can Be a Symptom of an Anxiety Disorder
Your breathing changes – when you feel anxious, you typically start to take in quick, deep breaths. This reduces the levels of carbon dioxide in your blood, which can cause dizziness as well as light-headedness, nausea and tingling in your hands and/or feet.
While these words are often used interchangeably, they describe different sensations. Dizziness is the feeling of being lightheaded, foggy or unsteady. Vertigo, which is less common than dizziness, is an overall spinning sensation.What are the 3 types of vertigo? ›
There are two types of vertigo, peripheral and central vertigo.What cures vertigo fast? ›
- Start in a sitting position.
- Rapidly lie down toward the affected side and hold for one to two minutes.
- Turn your head quickly 45 degrees toward the ceiling and hold for two minutes.
- Sit back upright.
Hot flashes or flushes are, by far, the most common symptom of menopause. About 75% of all women have these sudden, brief, periodic increases in their body temperature. Usually hot flashes start before a woman's last period. For 80% of women, hot flashes occur for 2 years or less.What are the worse symptoms of the menopause? ›
Hot flashes and vaginal dryness are the two symptoms most frequently linked with menopause. Other symptoms associated with menopause include sleep disturbances, urinary complaints, sexual dysfunction, mood changes, and quality of life.How do I know if it's menopause or something else? ›
Menopause is defined as the time when the ovaries stop making eggs. It is typically confirmed when a person has not had a menstrual period for 12 consecutive months (with no other obvious causes). Menopause will typically occur in the late 40s or early 50s, and the average age for menopause is 51.
Dizziness, Feeling Of Being Detached From Reality, Forgetfulness And Lightheadedness. This combination of symptoms can have many different causes. You could be having a problem with your brain and nervous system, inner ear, circulation, an imbalance of hormones or minerals in your body, or a mental health issue.Can HRT help with dizziness? ›
If the dizziness is related to the menopause alone and you have other symptoms of the menopause, you may want to try Hormone Replacement Therapy (HRT), after weighing up the benefits and small risks with your GP.What are the symptoms of low estrogen? ›
- Dry skin.
- Tender breasts.
- Weak or brittle bones.
- Trouble concentrating.
- Moodiness and irritability.
- Vaginal dryness or atrophy.
- Hot flashes and night sweats.
- Irregular periods or no periods (amenorrhea).
It's defined as the final menstrual period and is confirmed when a woman has not had her period for 12 consecutive months. Women in North America will likely experience natural menopause between ages 40 and 58, averaging around age 51. Some women, however, reach this phase in their 30s, others in their 60s.Does menopause eventually end? ›
While menopause symptoms will disappear for most women four to five years after their last cycle, symptoms can occasionally surface many years later in a mild form. Hot flashes are one of the most common menopause symptoms that women experience years after the disappearance of most of them.What are the 5 stages of menopause? ›
- Pre-Menopause Stage. During the pre-menopause stage of life, a woman is having her regular menstrual cycle, is in her prime childbearing years, and has no noticeable symptoms of menopause. ...
- Perimenopause Stage. ...
- Menopause Stage. ...
- Post-Menopause Stage. ...
- Menopause Treatment in Baton Rouge.
Blood Work A blood test can reveal problems that could be to blame for your dizziness complaints. Your doctor might check your blood cell count, thyroid function, blood sugar levels, electrolytes, and more. Allergy Tests Sometimes allergies are the culprit for vertigo symptoms.What can cause dizziness for months? ›
Low blood pressure and low blood sugar are two common causes of dizziness and fatigue, but they are usually temporary conditions. However, unmanaged diabetes, malnutrition, anemia, and obstructive breathing disorders (e.g. sleep apnea, emphysema) can cause persistent dizziness and fatigue.Can menopause cause severe vertigo? ›
Many investigations have found common occurrences of benign paroxysmal positional vertigo (BPPV) in women, and clinical experience has shown that BPPV can develop due to increased hormonal fluctuations, especially during menopause.