If you have ever suddenly developed an intense headache, nausea, change in vision or sensitivity to light, you most likely experienced a common neurological disorder called a migraine. In addition to being very disruptive, they may be linked to ear-related issues.
Understanding Vestibular Migraines
According to experts, about 40% of all migraines include feelings of dizziness or being off-balance. Known as vestibular syndrome, these symptoms can be triggered by:
- Certain foods.
- Hormonal fluctuations.
- Barometric pressure changes.
- Sleep disturbance.
The Hearing Loss Link
While migraines and hearing loss are both common, experts are unsure if their overlap means that one causes the other or if their apparent comorbidity is just a coincidence.
Some propose that the connection lies in the vestibular system. Located within the inner ear, the vestibular system is responsible for providing your brain with information about where your body is in space. In addition to helping you balance, the inner ear also plays an important role in hearing. Within the inner ear are delicate hair cells that convert sound vibrations into electrical impulses. This information is then sent through the auditory nerve to the brain to be processed as sound. If there is an issue with the inner ear, that could be the cause for balance issues and trouble hearing.
Experts may be unable to confirm the connection between migraines and hearing loss, but that does not mean they are never related. There are a few medical conditions that are occasionally misdiagnosed as a migraine and also include hearing loss on their list of symptoms.
Idiopathic intracranial hypotension occurs when there is too much fluid around the brain and spinal cord. Excess cerebrospinal fluid can cause headaches, tinnitus and loss of vision.
Meniere’s disease occurs when there is a too much fluid within the inner ear. Common symptoms of this complex disorder include vertigo, headaches, hearing and tinnitus.
Seeking Professional Help
Feeling dizzy and off-balance after riding Batman, the Ride at Six Flags Over Texas is normal. Having this feeling accompanied by a fever, chills, vomiting and hearing loss is not. If you experience this combination of symptoms, you should seek medical attention immediately as it may be the sign of something serious.
To learn more about conditions that can cause hearing loss or schedule an appointment with a hearing professional, contact Sharp Hearing today.